Manuel Kasper, author of m0n0wall, posted the following to the m0n0wall mailing list on December 29, 2004.
If you want to be really happy with your wireless, then by all means buy a real dedicated AP. hostap just never matches the performance and reliability (not even under Linux) of a *good* AP, and is only intended as a solution for people who absolutely need to do everything on one box.
Chris Buechler has this to add:
I have a 2511MP+ in my 4501, though honestly, I don't use it much anymore for anything other than m0n0wall testing. I got a Linksys WRT54G to use for wireless. FreeBSD 4.11's hostap just plain sucks IMO. It's starting to show its age (the 4.x version is several years old). There are many newer cards you just can't get to connect to it no matter what (more than half the b/g and a/b/g cards I've tried), some that require configuration changes to connect, and in general it's just a pain. Given the cost of miniPCI cards, a Linksys or similar is a good alternative for about the same cost - just bridge the wireless over to an OPT port on m0n0wall, as I do. Things should improve very much in the next m0n0wall version, including support for a/b/g cards and none of the pains of 4.11's dated hostap, so you may want to hold off for a few months or so if you can.
Things improved a bit as support for more cards was added, but the fundamental problems remained.
Lee Sharp, the maintainer of SmallWall, also frequently posted to the m0n0wall list his preference for good quality commercial APs over hostap.