Feasability information - WIfi status light

Hello..

I am an absolute complete beginner who doesn't even own an Arduino, but with your help, I think I might be able to use one for a project.

I help maintain a Wifi access point in a neighboring apartment. This means that from time to time, the access point needs to be physically restarted, or the cables need to be put back in, if someone has been playing with it.

I have a different wifi network in my department, but I can connect to the (slower) other connection..

I have no indication in my apartment that the other wifi is currently working, unless I take the time to disconnect from my wifi, log in to the other one, and test it. My only other indicator is the neighbor, (my customer) banging on my door at all hours, asking me to fix it again..

I am looking for a very inexpensive system that can connect to the other Wifi, and tun on some kind of nice big 12 or 240 volt LED to indicate connectivity, and then to turn that light off if the wifi is not working.

This way, I can just walk into a room in my house, and know absolutely if the wifi is working in the other apartment or not.

Is an Arduino suitable for this task, or is there a better solution?

Please indicate level of programming experience (I have absolutely NONE) estimated hardware costs, and feasibility..

And my MANY MANY thanks for your time in responding to a complete beginner.

Obviously you are not referring to a router, so what exactly are you calling a WIFI access point? And to you have some technical information that might help in find a solution to your problem.

Paul

You can configre your accesspoint to restart every X hours. And you can make a program that scans dor the WiFi BSSID and signals if it's absent. You can do thos for your Notebook (if it's linux, is just 10 lines of bash code including comments) or you can use a ESP8266 / ESP32 and use some more lines of code for it.

Paul_KD7HB:
Obviously you are not referring to a router, so what exactly are you calling a WIFI access point? And to you have some technical information that might help in find a solution to your problem.

Paul

Hi, The "access point" is a VERY old Dlan device which is connected to a Lancom router with a LAN cable..

it has only one job, and that is to produce an 80211g wifi signal in an area where the router cannot reach..

certainly there could be better solutions here, but it works quite well, and I am loathed to change it.

i just need some device which can connect to the wifi signal for that network, and give me a visual signal if the wifi is working or not.

THANK YOU for your responses thus far :slight_smile:

I install WiFi in offices, amongst other things. A wireless access point should just work and work and work and not need to be fiddled with every so often. How about fixing the actual problem?

The "access point" is VERY old

So buy a new one then!

"I have no indication in my apartment that the other wifi is currently working, unless I take the time to disconnect from my wifi, log in to the other one, and test it."

Well, if you can connect to the network from your place, then you might get an ESP wifi board and log it into the network. It could send test pings or other similar test procedures, and have it sound an alert if it doesn't get the expected result. Otherwise just fix the originating problem.

Arduino's WiFiNINA library comes with a nice example sketch named "WiFiPing":

This will work with the Nano 33 IoT, MKR WiFi 1010, or [Uno WiFi Rev2[/url.

This sketch could easily be modified to do what you want. In the sketch is this code:

  if (pingResult >= 0) {
    Serial.print("SUCCESS! RTT = ");
    Serial.print(pingResult);
    Serial.println(" ms");
  } else {
    Serial.print("FAILED! Error code: ");
    Serial.println(pingResult);
  }

So all you need to do is use digitalWrite() to change the state of one of your Arduino board's pins depending on whether the ping is successful or fails. You can learn how to use pinMode() and digitalWrite() by studying this tutorial:

and the reference pages:

There is one slightly tricky thing. The WiFiPing sketch only connects to the access point when the board is first powered on. This means that if the access point hardware locks up or has a power outage, after the problem goes away you would need to reset or power cycle the Arduino board to get it to reconnect to the access point. Much better would be to have the Arduino board automatically reconnect. You can do that by calling WiFi.begin() after the ping fails. The code to do that is already in the setup function of the WiFiPing sketch, so it's mostly just a copy/paste job:

  } else {
    Serial.print("FAILED! Error code: ");
    Serial.println(pingResult);
    
    // reconnect to the access point
    status = WL_IDLE_STATUS;
    while ( status != WL_CONNECTED) {
      Serial.print("Attempting to connect to WPA SSID: ");
      Serial.println(ssid);
      // Connect to WPA/WPA2 network:
      status = WiFi.begin(ssid, pass);

      // wait 5 seconds for connection:
      delay(5000);
    }
  }

With a small LED, it's simple to just connect it directly to one of the pins of your Arduino, using a series current limiting resistor. However, you can't directly power a 12 V or 240 V LED from your Arduino board. Unless you have experience working with mains voltages, I would recommend against using 240 V, but you can work safely with 12 V and there is plenty of information available on how to do this.](ARDUINO UNO WiFi REV2 | Arduino Official Store)

zoomkat:
"I have no indication in my apartment that the other wifi is currently working, unless I take the time to disconnect from my wifi, log in to the other one, and test it."

Well, if you can connect to the network from your place, then you might get an ESP wifi board and log it into the network. It could send test pings or other similar test procedures, and have it sound an alert if it doesn't get the expected result. Otherwise just fix the originating problem.

I recently did a project that periodically pings my NAS, Router and Home Assistant plus one external IP (randomly rotated from a pool of sites). If I get a ping response, I light a green LED. Otherwise red. This way, at a glance I can see if my local network, router and the WAN are working.

Could you have an ESP that connects to the other AP and periodically gets the NTP time or pings google. If the wifi connection or NTP/ping fail then either light an LED or maybe connect to your wifi instead and send a message to your phone.