On Wed, 2 Oct 2019 at 07:35, Patrick O'Callaghan <pocallaghan@gmail.com> wrote:
On Tue, 2019-10-01 at 16:04 -0700, Samuel Sieb wrote:
> > Powerline Ethernet (usually called Homeplug -
> > https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HomePlug) is my standard answer for
> > people who want to extend their home network. Very easy to install and
> > much cheaper than the alternatives (not counting wireless "extenders"
> > which are basically a kludge). The downside is that unlike mesh systems
> > they don't tend to merge everything into one network, relying on your
> > WiFi device to hop from one to another.
> If you have your access points all configured with the same SSID and
> password, there is no difference with a mesh system other than better
> speed.

Powerline Ethernet has the advantage in cases were there are lots of
wifi routers (e.g., high density urban settings).  I've heard of cases where
home wifi works well during the day when most nearby residents are at
school or work, but becomes unusable during peak evening hours.  I 
assume this stems from a combination of wifi and WAN conjestion.  
Powerline Ethernet can help when you have older hardware (e.g., printer) 
that lacks wifi and the ethernet jack is on the "wrong" side of the room.  

I know that's true in theory, but in practice I've had problems with
it. I assume this is one difference between consumer-grade APs and
"managed" devices intended for corporate networks.

Consumer grade AP's handle the easy cases, fall down when conditions are
far from ideal.  There are also differences in the signal pattern and MIMO
support that affect the ease of moving around with portable devices.   Some
people end up rearranging the furniture so the ipad has a signal in their
favored chair.  

There may be "pro-sumer" wifi gear that steals features from managed 
devices for home and small business applications, but then you have to
consider long-term viability and support.   If history is any guide there will
be multiple offerings but only a few that remain viable for more than a 
couple years.

George N. White III