- via a single convergence device commonly called the wireless ADSL modem router (like the 2Wire 2700HGV2) which combines the functions of ADSL modem cum wireless access point (WAP) cum router features (some include VoIP features as well)
- via three separate devices; a ADSL modem, a network switch and a wireless router (which essentially is a WAP cum router cum 4 port LAN switch).
In the first configuration, you plug both the phone line and the set-top box (and other wired PCs if any) to the ADSL modem router and you are done. Pictorially, it looks something like this:
phone <> wireless ADSL <> set-top box
line modem router <> PC
Simple and convenient. Will probably sit well with non-techie home users who want minimum fuss.
However, if you are fussy over which modem/router/WAP to use or if you already have one or more of those devices and do not wish to junk them, then option 2 appears to be the only way to go. In this configuration, the telephone line goes to the ADSL modem, the modem then gets connected to the switch together with the set-top box and wireless router and finally, your wired PCs to the end of the router. The connection diagram will look something like this:
phone <> ADSL <> network <> set-top box
line modem switch <> wireless router <> PC
Pretty complicated and you have to waste a network switch (which usually comes in minimum four ports but you never use more than two) in between.
The good news is that there is now a third option that gets rid of the network switch. You simply need to get a wireless router that is capable of customising one of the LAN ports to become a switched WAN port. With it, the connection diagram becomes:
phone <> ADSL <> wireless <> set-top box
line modem router <> PC
Here's my setup that supports this configuration.
- Get a wireless router (i.e. Buffalo WHR-HP-G54) that supports this configuration
- Change the stock firmware to DD-WRT
- Connect up all the devices as shown above (make a note on which LAN port the set-top box is connected to, in my case, it was port no 4)
- telnet into wireless router
- run the following command sequence (take note where no 4 appears)
nvram set vlan0ports="1 2 3 5*"
nvram set vlan1ports="0 4 5"
- If you are not using port 4 to connect to your set-top box, you will need to change the numbers accordingly. e.g. if you are using port 3, then the commands become:
nvram set vlan0ports="1 2 4 5*"
nvram set vlan1ports="0 3 5"
- And you are done!