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Old Dec 16th, 2010, 01:16 PM
sspeed sspeed is offline
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Default SonosNet - how really does it work?

Saw this:

Sonos is not influenced by the wireless security settings on your Router. Since one of the ZonePlayers or ZoneBridges is wired to your Router directly, that wired Zone then creates its own proprietary mesh network called SonosNet. SonosNet is a wireless network in your home, separate from your home wifi, and the two do not communicate with each other. Only Sonos devices can connect to SonosNet, and Sonos devices cannot connect to your home network. This allows you to stream music to all of your ZonePlayers without using your home wifi to do so.


Here is the situation... gigantic house, terrible wireless coverage, 3 ZonePlayer 90s down by the router, one up in the bedroom...

1 ZonePlayer is wired in to the router, the other 3 are on wireless (apparently SonosNet). 2 wireless ZPs sit a foot from the router.

Would it be beneficial to plug those 2 by the router in to the router and get them off wireless? Should I piggyback them or give them each a port on the router?

If the ZonePlayers don't use your wireless and go on the proprietary SonosNet, why do they all pick up an IP address?
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  #2  
Old Dec 16th, 2010, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sspeed View Post
Here is the situation... gigantic house, terrible wireless coverage, 3 ZonePlayer 90s down by the router, one up in the bedroom...

1 ZonePlayer is wired in to the router, the other 3 are on wireless (apparently SonosNet). 2 wireless ZPs sit a foot from the router.

Would it be beneficial to plug those 2 by the router in to the router and get them off wireless? Should I piggyback them or give them each a port on the router?
At the moment they won't be using your wireless at all. These two zoneplayers will be wirelessly connecting to the other Zoneplayer using Sonosnet (as you say).

In geenral, yes it would be beneficial to wire them to the router. A port each or piggyback (daisy-chained), it really doesn't matter.

Of course, will it make a significant difference? Possibly not. It depends on the location of the existing wired Zoneplayer. If that one is close to the other two, then you should already have an excellent wireless signal, in which case you probably won't notice any difference wiring them.

Quote:
If the ZonePlayers don't use your wireless and go on the proprietary SonosNet, why do they all pick up an IP address?
Because they communicate to the router via the wired Zoneplayer using Sonosnet.

Cheers,

Keith
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  #3  
Old Dec 17th, 2010, 07:13 AM
sspeed sspeed is offline
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Thanks, that helps. So when they communicate wirelessly on SonosNet, I assume they are still on the 2.4mhz band, just their own VLAN or something?

In a house of wireless interference I could see that causing some problems?
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Old Dec 17th, 2010, 08:11 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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That'll be 2.4GHz.

The separation between SonosNet and WiFi is at the link level: they use different protocol/encryption schemes which don't intercommunicate. To reduce radio interference they should as a general rule also be separated at the physical level, i.e. put onto different, non-overlapping wireless channels.

In a really congested situation, finding clear spectrum for Sonos might be a challenge, and making a survey with inSSIDer could assist. It's recommended that the local WiFi doesn't use 40MHz/wide channels for 802.11n since this is a spectrum hog.
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Old Dec 17th, 2010, 08:35 AM
sspeed sspeed is offline
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Thanks for all the help, I'm looking at this for a friend and don't know Sonos all that well, so I appreciate the guidance....

So, I'll go from one wired ZonePlayer and 3 wireless ZonePlayers, to 3 wired Zoneplayers and just one left on wireless. I assume the 3 will talk by SonosNet on the wire and the last will do it wirelessly, with the first attached ZonePlayer serving up the wireless?

Do you change the SonosNet wireless channel in the Sonos software?
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Old Dec 17th, 2010, 08:51 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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Originally Posted by sspeed View Post
I assume the 3 will talk by SonosNet on the wire and the last will do it wirelessly, with the first attached ZonePlayer serving up the wireless?
SonosNet is actually the proprietary wireless mesh scheme. They talk via Ethernet on the wire.

You can wire 3 players. The fourth will wirelessly connect via SonosNet to a nearby wired node.

If more than one ZonePlayer is wired directly to a switch/router then that device needs to support STP (Spanning Tree Protocol); Sonos units use STP to detect and avoid network loops. You should be okay, but if you hit problems you can always daisy-chain the players instead.

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Originally Posted by sspeed View Post
Do you change the SonosNet wireless channel in the Sonos software?
Yes. Using a Sonos controller you choose from channels 1, 6 or 11.

HTH
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Old Dec 17th, 2010, 09:05 AM
sspeed sspeed is offline
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So I'll have the normal wireless on channel 1, and then I can put the Sonos controllers on channel 6?

What I'm still not getting though.... the Sonos controllers also connect and pick up an IP address, when I change channel won't they lose their connection? Or do they connect back through the first ZonePlayer to get their IP address vs going over the wireless network?
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Old Dec 17th, 2010, 09:31 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sspeed View Post
So I'll have the normal wireless on channel 1, and then I can put the Sonos controllers on channel 6?
That's a good starting point. Check that your WiFi isn't using 'wide' channels if it's a Wireless N device.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sspeed View Post
What I'm still not getting though.... the Sonos controllers also connect and pick up an IP address, when I change channel won't they lose their connection? Or do they connect back through the first ZonePlayer to get their IP address vs going over the wireless network?
I can understand your confusion. You need to mentally separate what happens at the IP layer (the network layer or layer 3) from what happens at the link layer beneath (layer 2). The IP packets are carried to their destination by whatever link layer they need to use for each segment of their journey.

Ethernet is a link layer. So is WiFi. And so is SonosNet.

If SonosNet changes wireless channel, the IP layer is unaffected. Yes, the controller will reconnect to the nearest Sonos node on a different physical wireless channel, but as long as there's a connection IP traffic doesn't care.
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  #9  
Old Dec 18th, 2010, 05:30 AM
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As ratty point out, you seem to be getting confused between the different "layers" involved in the connectivity.

The model that has been adopted by the IT industry is to build communications systems in "layers" with the commonly referenced model being the OSI model

When people refer to "layer 2" or "layer 3", they are referring to this model.

IP (and, thus, IP addressing) is part of "layer 3" and has absolutely nothing to do with Ethernet, wireless, Sonosnet, or any other layer 2 protocol, other than it can run over the top of any of these.

It could also run over dozens of other "layer 2" connections including Sonet/SDH, Token-ring, and carrier pigeon.

Conversely, any layer 2 network is independent of, and oblivious to what is running over it. IP is only one of the protocols you can run over a layer 2 network. Others include IPX, Appletalk, Netbeui, Banyan Vines, and ICMP.

I will also point out that Ethernet (at layer 2) is independent from layer 1 which is the physical network. The Physical part of the network may be cat5 cable, "thinnet" coaxial, "thicknet" coaxial, 2.4GHz radio, etc.

Obviously in practical applications, these facilities are normally combined. A PC (or a Sonos Zoneplayer) includes specific layer 1, 2, and 3 capabilities:

For wired this typically is:
Layer 3: IP
Layer 2: IEEE 803.2 Ethernet
Layer 1:CAT-5 twisted pair

For wireless this typically is:
Layer 3: IP
Layer 2: IEEE 802.11 wireless or Sonosnet
Layer 1: 2.4GHz Radio

Note that Sonosnet is based on many of the core IEEE 802.11 wireless standards, but with proprietary parts to adapt it to a wireless mesh.

Cheers,

Keith
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I am not affiliated with or representative of Sonos in any way. All opinions expressed are my own!
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  #10  
Old Dec 18th, 2010, 05:43 AM
sspeed sspeed is offline
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Thank you, that helps a LOT!
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