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AP Mode

Do these statements have a simple affirmative answer?

 

(1) A wireless router in AP mode merely extends the local network it is connected to (via an ethernet cable) to wireless clients.

(2) The ISP modem at the other end of the cable isn’t aware that some connections include a wireless hop.

(3) The ISP modem needs no special configuration to enable a connected router to operate in AP mode.

 

Still trying to figure out why my Nighthawk RAX35 is a brick in AP mode.  (Curiously, RAX35 is NOT one of the model choices above).

Model: RAX40|Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream WiFi Router
Message 1 of 9
Apprentice

Re: AP Mode

Yes to all.

 

Consider this,

- give the AP a fixed ip eg 192.168.1.2 ( assuming the main router is 192.168.1.1 and there is no overlap with the modems ip, or any other fixed ip device.)

- set the main routers dchp starting address to be above 10 or 100 ( I use 100) so it can never issue that ip to any other device.  I always reserve the 1st 10 ip's for fixed ip devices like access points.  

 

I have 2 active Netgears as AP's and a 3rd powered down (not a Netgear) as a spare, all work without issue.  

 

I connect fhe main router to the WAN port of the AP router, but any port on the AP should also work.

Message 2 of 9

Re: AP Mode

Appreciate your taking the time to respond!

 

When the cable to my ISP modem is plugged into one of the four ethernet ports on the RAX35, the router behaves as if it was a switch; wired and wireless clients are on the local network.  This is the work-around a Gearhead tech ultimately found; every device on one big happy local network.

 

But in this setup, the RAX35 does not appear to have an IP address, and the ISP modem reports the device as off (guessing it recorded the router's MAC address long ago, when first connected out of the box).  Thus I am unable to administer the wireless features of the router.  And the Nighthawk app on my phone reports issues connecting with my wireless network, even though my phone has wireless connectivity. 

 

When the cable is plugged into the Internet port (WAN), no connectivity, wired or wireless.  The Nighthawk app reports no wireless network.

 

So something has gone awry.  

 

Craig

Model: RAX40|Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream WiFi Router
Message 3 of 9
Guru

Re: AP Mode

> Do these statements have a simple affirmative answer?

 

   No.  Everything's complicated.  Especially when the questions are
flawed.

 

> (1) A wireless router in AP mode merely extends the local network it
> is connected to (via an ethernet cable) to wireless clients.

 

   Not "merely".  The LAN Ethernet ports of the router-as-WAP should
work, too.

 

> (2) The ISP modem at the other end of the cable isn't aware that some
> connections include a wireless hop.

 

   The (unspecified) ISP modem+_router_ knows only that more devices are
connected to one of its LAN Ethernet ports.  As if there were a network
switch connected there.  Which there is.

 

> (3) The ISP modem needs no special configuration to enable a connected
> router to operate in AP mode.


   If your (unspecified) "The ISP modem" is really your (unspecified)
"The ISP modem+_router_", then, yes.

 

> Still trying to figure out why my Nighthawk RAX35 is a brick in AP
> mode. [...]

 

   Still trying to guess what "brick" means to you, what you did, and
what happened when you did it.  As usual, showing actual actions
(commands) with their actual results (error messages, LED indicators,
...) can be more helpful than vague descriptions or interpretations
(like, say, "brick").

 

   And, what your (unspecified) ISP modem(+router?) might be.  And if
it really is only a modem, then connecting it to anything other than a
full-function router (like, say, a router-as-WAP) would probably be a
mistake.


   Visit http://netgear.com/support , put in your model number, and look
for Documentation.  Get the User Manual.  Look for "Set up the router as
a WiFi access point".

 

> [...] (Curiously, RAX35 is NOT one of the model choices above).

 

   It might be more likely to appear (someday?) in a different forum:

 

      https://community.netgear.com/t5/x/bd-p/en-home-routers-nighthawk-wifi-ax6

 


> - give the AP a fixed [LAN IP address] [...]

 

   A reserved dynamic address, configured on (the DHCP server on) the
main router ("The ISP modem"?) would probably be the easiest type of
fixed IP address to manage.  (Because then, you wouldn't need to fiddle
around with its DHCP pool...)


> - set the main routers dchp starting address [...]

 

   See above.

 

> [...] 2 active Netgears [...]

 

   Thanks for including those model numbers and firmware versions.

 

> I connect fhe main router to the WAN port of the AP router, but any
> port on the AP should also work.

 

   You've tried that, have you?  I'd tend to follow the documentation,
if/when it exists.  A Netgear router-as-WAP might be expecting that
WAN/Internet interface to be the one which leads to the main LAN
segment.  (DHCP configuration, time server access, ...?)

Message 4 of 9

Re: AP Mode

After many hours troubleshooting, this post was an attempt to articulate the simplest questions I could come up with, to fact check my basic understanding.  Your clarifications corroborate the previous “yes” answers.

 

“Brick” meaning no connectivity, wired or wireless, to internet or between local devices. Power & wireless lights are on. The Nighthawk app reports no wireless network.

 

I’ve read the manual, checked support articles, and bought a short Gearhead contract that’s now about to expire.  Tech was unable to get AP mode functioning correctly. We tried downgrading the current firmware (V1.0.3.80_1.0.1) to (V1.0.3.62_1.0.1) without success.  Here is the work-around we came up with: https://community.netgear.com/t5/Nighthawk-Routers-with-WiFi-6-AX/Nighthawk-AX4-RAX35-nonfunctional-...

 

If AP mode is turned off, all is well, but the RAX35 creates its own, second local network, which is not practical.

 

My ISP-provided modem is a conventional residential modem, ATT BGW210-700.  No issues with it, but location is not optimal; wireless has been disabled to avoid interference.  No one has been able to explain how the ISP modem might matter.

 

Barring a sudden revelation, ready to conclude it’s not fixable, and try another device.

Model: RAX40|Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream WiFi Router
Message 5 of 9
Guru

Re: AP Mode

> [...] no connectivity, wired or wireless, to internet or between local
> devices. [...]

 

   How, exactly, did you configure the RAX35 as a WAP?  Did you follow
the instructions in its User Manual, or some other procedure, or what?
What, exactly, is connected to what, exactly?  (Hint: If a device has
different types of Ethernet ports, then "connected to device" is not
enough detail.)

 

   Using the documented procedure might work only if you use the
WAN/Internet port on the RAX35-as-WAP for its connection to the main
router LAN.  (If you choose the default, "Get dynamically from existing
router", then its DHCP request might be broadcast only on that
interface.)

 

   Does the RAX35-as-WAP appear in an Attached Devices report (or
whatever the ATT BGW210-700 has of that sort)?

 

> I've read the manual, [...]


   That tells me nothing about what you did, other than reading.

 

> Tech was unable [...]

 

   "unable" is not a useful problem description.  It does not say what
you did.  It does not say what happened when you did it.  As usual,
showing actual actions (commands) with their actual results (error
messages, LED indicators, ...) can be more helpful than vague
descriptions or interpretations.

 

> My ISP-provided modem is a conventional residential modem, ATT
> BGW210-700.

 

   That's a "gateway" (modem+router), not a simple modem.

 

> No one has been able to explain how the ISP modem might matter.

 

   What matters is that it's actually a modem+router, not a "modem".  So
long as it is/includes a router, litte else about it should matter much.

 

   I would not be amazed by any particular defect in Netgear router
firmware, but it would be unusual for WAP mode not to work.  If you do a
settings reset, and follow the procedure in the User Manual at "Set up
the router as a WiFi access point", and it doesn't work properly, then
defective firmware would be one explanation.  I don't have an RAX35 in
hand, so I can't test anything.

 

> Here is the work-around we came up with: [...]

 

   For a more detailed procedure (especially regarding the potential
problems with DHCP on the main router), see, for example:

 

      https://community.netgear.com/t5/x/x/m-p/1463500

 

That's written for a Netgear C6300-as-WAP, but the steps are about the
same for any other router (any make/model) which lacks a one-step WAP
option.


   Note that that scheme leaves the WAN/Internet port on the
router-as-WAP unconnected.  (A WAP is all-LAN. A model with the
one-step WAP option effectively reconfigures its WAN/Internet port as
another LAN port.  Without the one-step WAP option, you need to use only
the LAN ports.)

 

> Barring a sudden revelation, ready to conclude it's not fixable, and
> try another device.

 

   If you're doing things properly, and it doesn't work, then it doesn't
work.  Less defective firmware should fix such a problem, but that's not
a do-it-yourself project for most users.  The alternative is to use the
ad-hoc WAP mode scheme (as described above, using a static LAN IP
address on the router-as-WAP, disabling its DHCP server, and using only
its LAN Ethernet ports).

 

   Did you complain to Netgear?

Message 6 of 9
Apprentice

Re: AP Mode

If you do try another device, be aware that the RAX35 is basically the Walmart exclusive of the RAX40 (in case you're thinking of that one and it's just might be that Intel hardware/firmware combo and your ISP gateway that doesn't play well together). 

 

Try a retailer that has no-questions asked return policy, in case whatever you try next still doesn't work.  RAX15/RAX20 (again same, one is exclusive of one retailer) is Broadcom based, or step up to a RAX50, but that is pricier (unless you're in Canada, that one is on sale at BB frequently discounted $50-$100). 

Message 7 of 9

Re: AP Mode

I apologize for omitted relevant details; my post was a sanity check to confirm that AP mode was not uncommon, was relatively straightforward, and should not require complicated configuration.

 

Long story short, Netgear is replacing the RAX-35. (I called gearhead support one last time to request a refund, and after much polite discussion, the agent offered to replace the unit. Point, politeness.)

 

Thank you for taking time to follow up on my post in more detail than I expected.

 

> How, exactly, did you configure the RAX35 as a WAP?  Did you follow
> the instructions in its User Manual, or some other procedure, or what?
> What, exactly, is connected to what, exactly?  (Hint: If a device has
> different types of Ethernet ports, then "connected to device" is not
> enough detail.)

 

Followed the manual instructions scrupulously, connecting it to my ISP modem via the Internet port. Then several more times coached by a gearhead tech.

 

> Does the RAX35-as-WAP appear in an Attached Devices report (or
> whatever the ATT BGW210-700 has of that sort)?

 

The ATT BGW210-700 shows an entry for the MAC address of the RAX35, but its status is off.

 

> "unable" is not a useful problem description…

 

It was a while ago, and I don’t remember all the details of the 2.5 hour session…but tech ran out of ideas; after each try, we had to reset the router to the factory defaults.  You know how long that cycle takes.

 

> That's a "gateway" (modem+router), not a simple modem.

 

Thank you for clarifying the difference between a modem and a router. I meant to say, the typical device residential customers get with their internet service.

 

> For a more detailed procedure (especially regarding the potential
> problems with DHCP on the main router), see, for example:
>  
>       https://community.netgear.com/t5/x/x/m-p/1463500

 

Helpful steps; that describes the workaround gearhead came up with, but unfortunately the RAX35 itself does not appear on the local network. So not a good workaround in this case.

 

> Did you complain to Netgear?

 

I found no obvious link to a bug reporting page! Shortly after describing the bug I wanted to file, the tech today suddenly offered to replace the unit.

Will try again should the new unit exhibit the same behavior.

 

Anyone know if Netgear monitors this community forum for trouble?

Model: RAX40|Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream WiFi Router
Message 8 of 9
Guru

Re: AP Mode

> [...] unfortunately the RAX35 itself does not appear on the local
> network. [...]

 

   When you do what, exactly?  "does not appear" is yet another
non-description.

 

   Given that the RAX35 was working as a router, if you assign a
suitable LAN IP address to it, and connect one of its LAN Ethernet ports
to the main-router LAN, then it seems very unlikely that it would be
unreachable from another system on the LAN.  As always, many things are
possible, especially when Netgear router firmware is involved, but such
behavior would be unusually defective.

 

   The documented WAP-mode scheme might be defective, but the ad-hoc
alternative scheme really is very near failure-proof (on a working
router).

 

> Anyone know if Netgear monitors this community forum for trouble?


   Not reliably.  When it happens, a response might come days/weeks
later.  Creating an actual support case is more reliable, but support
after the 90-day window can be costly.

 

   Of course, your claim that you "followed instructions" is less
helpful than a precise, detailed description of what you actually did,
and what actually happened when you did it.

 

> Will try again should the new unit exhibit the same behavior.

 

   Could be interesting.

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