The Vonets VAP11G-300 is an example of a low cost Wi-Fi bridge that connects to the Speedway’s Ethernet port and powers off the Speedway’s USB port.
The Vonets bridge is presented because of its: Compact size (90 x 45 x 15 mm), ruggedness, powered by Speedway USB (avoids additional AC power source, mobile friendly), 802.11b/g/n support, security support, and it is economical. The bridge is available for around US$20 online by vendors such as www.amazon.com.
How to install the Vonets VAP11G-300
Step 1: Follow the Installation Manual Instructions
Follow the VAP11G-300 installation manual provided on how to configure the VAP11G-300 into “Intelligent Wi-Fi bridge mode.”
Notes that may help while following the installation manual:
- You will have the option to configure the VAP11G-300 over your PC's Wi-Fi or Ethernet adapter. Wi-Fi was an easy option.
- Performing a factory reset by pressing the reset button down with a paperclip for more than 5 seconds is a quick way to start over if ever needed.
- We used the PC to power the VAP11G-300 over USB during the configuration phase.
- When the instructions ask to turn off and reboot VAP11G-300 after entering the SID and WPA2 password (see below), we performed this by unplugging the VAP11G-300 from the USB and re-plugging it back in.
Step 2: Connect Speedway to the Vonets VAP11G-300
Once the VAP11G-300 is configured, connect it to your Speedway by powering it from the USB host port and connecting the Ethernet cable as shown in the photo at the top of this article.
Step 3: Find IP address of Speedway
With the Wi-Fi bridge now communicating with your access point, you will need to find the IP address assigned to the Speedway. I used the Web UI on my ASUS RT-N66W Dual-Band Wireless-N900 Gigabit Router, see image below. 192.168.1.21 is the IP for my Speedway, 192.168.1.103 is the IP for my PC, and 192.168.1.251 was assigned to the VAP11G-300.
Step: 4: Best Practice, Map the Speedway MAC address to a static address
Manually assigning an IP address to the Speedway will allow you to consistently access your reader with the same IP. The image below from the ASUS access point UI shows how to instruct its DHCP Server to map the Speedway's MAC address to the static IP 192.168.1.21.
Further Comments and Recommendations
- This article serves as an example. Other Wi-Fi bridge options are available that can be configured in a similar manner.
- We separated the Access Point with the VAP11G-300 by about 80 feet (25 meters) in our typical office environment which is a large room with cubicles, desks, and chairs. Throughput was more than adaquate to read tags at over 1,100 reads per second.
- Use the keepalive and link monitor facilities shown in the "Keepalives" Octane SDK and ReaderConnectivity example. You will want to monitor the TCP/IP based LLRP connection, reconnecting whenever there is a network hiccup.
- The" Scan Hotspots" tab will let you select and connect to a Wi-Fi network to connect to regardless of the authentication type. After, you will need to enter a passcode. See below: