Possible to create VLANs without Switches?

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Possible to create VLANs without Switches?

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Possible to create VLANs without Switches?
Possible to create VLANs without Switches?
2021-07-14 21:33:06 - last edited 2021-07-15 07:28:08
Model: EAP245  
Hardware Version: V3
Firmware Version:

Hello everyone,

I am trying to optimize my network which has around 30 wifi clients connected to one EAP245 (plus about 5 LAN devices connected to the router).

 

The problem is that most wifi clients are in fact smart home devices and I would like to put them into their own VLAN to stop them from crowding the network.

 

Since they are all connected to the same EAP as all other clients, is it possible to separate my normal clients (notebooks, phones etc.) from my smart home devices via VLANs?

Since no switches are involved, basically the EAP would need to create and manage the VLANs. Is this possible?

 

Alternatively I have Raspberry Pi 4 8GB running Raspberry OS and I have a basic switch lying around (without layer 2/VLAN capabilities).

 

Thank you for your help.

 

Best regards

Alex

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Re:Possible to create VLANs without Switches?-Solution
2021-07-15 02:34:43 - last edited 2021-07-15 07:28:08

@AleXSR700 

Hi Alex!

You can't get rid of the switch if you want to create SSID VLANs, because different SSID VLANs only receive packets with their unique VLAN tag, while untagged packets will be dropped. If you have some basic network knowledge, you should know, in this case, your router also needs to be able to deal with tagged packets.

 

And I don't think VLAN can help you significantly improve your wireless network performance. Usually wireless performance is still affected by your network environment, like channel and channel width, interference, the number of client devices, and so on. No matter how many VLANs you create, the EAP has to deal with the traffic from all VLANs, so the total amount of client devices doesn't decrease, that is, the total traffic doesn't reduce. And VLANs can't divide wireless channels. All devices will still use the same wireless channel, so that crowding still exists.

 

To avoid crowding network, what you should do is to divide channels for different clients, not set SSID VLANs. Most smart home devices use 2.4G, so you can create an SSID with only 2.4G enabled for your smart home devices, and then create another SSID with only 5G enabled for your normal devices.

 

Hope my answer gives you some insights!

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Re:Possible to create VLANs without Switches?-Solution
2021-07-15 02:34:43 - last edited 2021-07-15 07:28:08

@AleXSR700 

Hi Alex!

You can't get rid of the switch if you want to create SSID VLANs, because different SSID VLANs only receive packets with their unique VLAN tag, while untagged packets will be dropped. If you have some basic network knowledge, you should know, in this case, your router also needs to be able to deal with tagged packets.

 

And I don't think VLAN can help you significantly improve your wireless network performance. Usually wireless performance is still affected by your network environment, like channel and channel width, interference, the number of client devices, and so on. No matter how many VLANs you create, the EAP has to deal with the traffic from all VLANs, so the total amount of client devices doesn't decrease, that is, the total traffic doesn't reduce. And VLANs can't divide wireless channels. All devices will still use the same wireless channel, so that crowding still exists.

 

To avoid crowding network, what you should do is to divide channels for different clients, not set SSID VLANs. Most smart home devices use 2.4G, so you can create an SSID with only 2.4G enabled for your smart home devices, and then create another SSID with only 5G enabled for your normal devices.

 

Hope my answer gives you some insights!

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Re:Possible to create VLANs without Switches?
2021-07-15 05:05:01 - last edited 2021-07-15 05:06:22

@Somnus 

thank you for your feedback, it does help a lot.

 

I do own a simple AVM AP that I could use to create a dedicated 2.4 Ghz AP (with its own SSID) just for the home automation devices.

Then put the EAP245 on channel 1 for 2.4 Ghz (I need 2.4 Ghz also for non home automation devices) and the AVM AP on channel 6 or 11. Would that help?

 

Or is the problem that the router has to handle all the traffic from the many devices? I read that broadcasting is one of the issues and that this is fixed by VLANs. That's why I was thinking about those.

 

Best regards

Alex

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Re:Possible to create VLANs without Switches?
2021-07-15 07:09:59

@AleXSR700 

Hey

 

I think it will work. They are both on 2.4G, but they use different channels, which can avoid crowding traffic.

 

Obviously, all traffic have to be handled by the router if you need internet, which is the core of your network. But what we can do is to try our best to make these traffic pass through in a more orderly fashion. Router limits your total bandwidth. By optimizing the channel and channel width, we can make the best possible use of the bandwidth.

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Re:Possible to create VLANs without Switches?
2021-07-15 08:28:25

@Somnus 

Which channel combination would be best in this case? 1&6 or 1&11?

 

One thing I don't quite understand:

If all home automation devices are wireless and are only allowed to communicate with each other (so other wireless devices), why do I need a switch to put them in a VLAN? basically what I would like to do is have the AP block all communication outside of this group of devices, thereby freeing up the rest of the network from useless chatter.

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