This type of configuration is not supported in Apple's setup instructions....and I would never recommend it, but you might be able to do this if you really want to.
The main reason why you would not want to do this is that you will be setting up a "double hop" wireless connection for backups. Here's what I mean......
When your Mac backs up, the signal must travel all the way back to the main wireless router over wireless and then back again from the wireless router to the Time Capsule. This takes twice as long for the signal to travel and doubles the chances of an error occurring during a backup.
The Ethernet ports are not enabled on the Time Capsule when you set it up this way, so if you want to connect the Mac using Ethernet to the Time Capsule for a large backup to save time, you cannot do this.
Backing up this way will bring new meaning to the word SLOW.
Now that I've tried to convince you to not to do this, do you still want to try do this? (It will be even more difficult if you are using Mountain Lion on your Mac, since you will have to use a workaround to install old AirPort Utility software)
Hi Bob, thanks for the reply.
I should perhaps have been clearer in my original post that I'm not using the Time Capsule as a Time Machine backup drive, I'm simply using it to store some files that I don't need regular access to. Speed therefore is less of an issue in my case.
My issue is mainly how to go about having my Time Capsule join my wireless network without using ethernet. I can't find any options in the Airport Utility settings to enable me to do this, so I'm starting to think it simply isn't possible.
The image attached shows what I see in the configuration sheet. I have 'create' and 'extend' options, but not a 'join' option. I don't wish to create or extend, I just want to 'join'.
- Connect an appropriate cable between the AirPort and the device it will serve.
- Plug the AirPort into a power outlet.
- After the AirPort starts up, select it in the AirPort Utility screen.
- If you are now repurposing the AirPort, first reset it from Base Station in the menu bar and select Restore Default Settings.
- After the AirPort completes the restore process, choose it from the Wi-Fi menu in the upper-left corner.
- Click the Other Options button.
- Select "Add to an existing network".
- CHoose the Wi-Fi network name from the Wireless Network Name menu that you wish to join and click next.
- Enter the password to this network if required.
I can't find any options in the Airport Utility settings to enable me to do this, so I'm starting to think it simply isn't possible.
As I said, this will be even more difficult because you will have to use a workaround to install an older version of AirPort Utlity to be able to try to configure the Time Capsule to do what you want.
Then, you have deal with the fact that Apple "hides" the "Join a wireless network" option in AirPort Utility 5.x versions.
"Double Hop" wireless will affect all connections....not just Time Machine backups. Anything that you transfer to the Time Capsule is going to take a long, long time.
You will likely encounter set up errors if you try to use the version of AirPort Utility that you have now, but the setup suggested above might be worth a try if you do not want to install additional software on your Mac.
If the suggesed setup does not work, and you still want to continue trying, post back to confirm if you are using Mountain Lion....or....Lion on your Mac.
Hi edex67, thanks for the reply and for sharing the KB article earlier.
Unfortunately, the instructions supplied by Apple don't correspond with my base station. Even if I choose 'Add to existing network', the Time Capsule insists on extending it. In other words, there doesn't appear to be a 'client mode'.
I've attached below the screen shots from the AirPort Utility. This is after restoring default settings as described in step 4 of the instructions.
Note how the notes at the bottom say "set up this Time Capsule to join or extend an existing Wi-Fi network", which gives hope that simply joining and not extending might actually be an option...
However on the next sheet the Utility is insistent that the Time Capsule must extend the network. There is no 'join only' option.
The final sheet also gives no option to deviate from the 'extend' option.
Just checked this with my 802.11n Express (used for AirPlay streaming only) and found that actually the KB article is incorrect . You will have to install AirPort Utility 5.6 using this guide as Bob Timmons said:
Then do the following:
- Connect an appropriate cable between the AirPort Express and the device it will serve.
- Plug the AirPort into a power outlet.
- After the AirPort starts up, select it from the Wi-Fi menu, and then use the Setup Assistant in AirPort Utility to set it up.
- If you are now repurposing the AirPort, first reset it from Base Station in the menu bar, by selecting Restore Default Settings.
- Select the AirPort in AirPort Utility, and then click Continue.
- Enter a name and password for the AirPort, and then click Continue.
- Select "I want Time Capsule to join my current network", and then click Continue.
- Select "Join my wireless network," and then click Continue.
- Select your Wi-Fi network name from Wireless Network Name drop-down menu, match the Wireless Security, and then click Continue
- Click Update.
- Allow the AirPort to restart.
Alternatively, you could use Powerline adapters which would be simpler and faster.
I think I understand what you mean - an older version of AirPort Utility is needed to configure a Time Capsule in 'Client Only' mode.
I must admit, it does seem strange to me that this is such a complex scenario, as I would have thought this is how most wireless NAS products work...? In essense all I really need is a wireless hard disk, for storing files that I will very rarely need to access. But anyway...
I am running the latest version of Mountain Lion (10.8.2)
Any help you might be able to offer to enable me to run the Time Capsule in a 'client only' mode would be much appreciated.
Thank you for the link. I have downloaded the dmg file from Apple and the Automator workflow. Dragging the dmg onto the Automator icon begins the workflow - I briefly end up with an 'AirPort Temp' folder on my desktop which after a second or two is moved to the Trash. I don't end up with the 'Old AirPort Utility' icon on my desktop.
My default archive app is The Unarchiver - could that be the issue?
I've never seen that happen (although maybe someone else could shed some light). You could just use the more traditional Pacifist method: http://www.macworld.com/article/1167965/mountain_lion_and_the_ancient_airport_ba se_station.html
Hi edex67 & Bob,
Thank you both for your help with this, it's now working exactly as I intended.
Using Pacifist I was able to extract the older version of AirPort Utility, and set up as below:
Sure enough, on the next sheet the option to not extend the network was there:
Curiously enough, even when I open the newer version of AirPort Utility, it sees this configuration without any issues. If I choose the Time Capsule and select Edit, here is the 'join a wireless network' option that was proving so elusive before!
Thanks again to both of you for your help with this, it is much appreciated.