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Re: wifi routers in series

nalah
Tutor

wifi routers in series

Hi - have an old house with thick walls so to reach some parts of the house I need to set up additional routers.  Have already successfully set up one additional router which works fine (changed the IP address on the 2nd router, disabled the DHCP server and set connection type to 'bridge') Have a direct cable connection between the primary router (with the ADSL line) and the second router.  No problems. can see and connect to the second router and have access to internet.    I have then tried to set up a third router (different IP address to the other 2, DHCP server disabled and connection type bridge) .   However although I can see the WiFI router and can conncect I am not connected to the internet.  I have a direct cable link between the 2nd router and this 3rd router.  What am I doing wrong ?  - does the 3rd router need to be connected to the main router rather than the second router ??

 

thanks

Message 1 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series

It's not entirely clear how you have configured your routers, but you should be setting them up as APs. If the routers have an actual AP mode, then enable it. By default, the AP will use DHCP to obtain an IP address for itself. You can override this and manually assign an IP address to the AP, but make sure the IP address you chose is outside of the DHCP pool managed by the DHCP server but still inside the IP subnet.

 

Most of the newer Netgear routers running in AP mode require you to connect the Internet port in the direction of the primary router. You can wire APs in series. Plug the Internet Port of the 2nd AP into the LAN port of the 1st AP. Or you can connect APs to the main router in a star topology.

 

On older routers that do not have an explicit AP mode, you would disable the DHCP server, as you have done. Enable the DHCP client or statically assign an IP address, following the same rules as above (outside DHCP pool but inside IP subnet). Some models require you to connect the AP to the router via a LAN port instead of the Internet Port. Check your router's instructions. Again, you can still connect APs in series. They would just connect through LAN ports.

Message 2 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

Hi - thanks for the reply (sorry for the time taken have been diverted onto other things).

AP mode doesnt appear to be an option on the older routers.  

 

I did connect the 3rd router directly to the primary router (LAN port to LAN port) and it works fine.  So either secondary router connected directly to the primary router works fine becoming part of the network and accessing the internet.   Only when I connect in series do I loose internet on the router not connected directly to the primary router.    As you indicated the router instructions say connect via LAN port and not via internet port.

 

Can you clarify what you mean by DHCP pool and inside subnet IP?

thanks

Message 3 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series

Frankly, I'm surprised that wiring it in series didn't work. When a router is operating in AP mode, the Internet and WAN ports should operate as if they belong to a single, internal Ethernet switch. Oh well, hopefully connecting the 3rd router directly to the primary router gives you the Wi-Fi coverage that you need.

 

I'll clarify what I meant regarding the DHCP pool and IP subnet.  Suppose your primary router is configured with address 192.168.1.1 and the subnet mask is 255.255.255.0. Its DHCP server is enabled and the starting and ending addresses are 192.168.1.2 and 192.168.1.100, respectively.

 

The IP subnet for this setup is 192.168.1.0. This means that IP addresses between 192.168.1.1 and 192.168.1.254, inclusive, are part of the subnet. Technically, 192.168.1.0 and 196.168.1.255 are part of the subnet but they are traditionally not assigned to devices. 

 

The DHCP pool is the range of addresses that can be assigned by the DHCP server. For this setup, that range is from 192.168.1.2 to 192.168.1.100, inclusive.

 

If you want to statically assign an IP address to a device, you should assign it outside of the DHCP pool. If you don't, the DHCP server can very well assign the address to a different device and cause an IP address assignment conflict. This can sometimes happen even for DHCP address if the DHCP server is rebooted and assigns the same IP address to one device that it gave to another device before the reboot.  

 

Anyway, for this setup, addresses 192.168.1.101 to 192.168.1.254 are outside the DHCP pool and can be used for statically assigned IP addresses.

 

I hope this explains things.

Message 4 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

Hi - well things have gone from bad to worse.   The 2 routers I was trying to use as bridges I can no longer get into their control system to make changes.    I set them up with ip adresses 192.168.1.101 and .102.   Using those addresses I cannot access their systems from my browser.   When I connected each one to a laptop via cable and tried ipconfig there was nothing in the default gateway for either.   Another odd thing is that my primary router which had an IP of 192.168.1.1 now has an IP of 192.168.1.31 certainlky not one I changed.

 

any clues what happened?

 

thanks

 

Message 5 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series

I have no idea why your primary router changed its IP address. That's always statically configured, so someone must have changed it, or else your router is possessed. Smiley Wink

 

As far as connecting to your other 2 routers is concerned, you may have to temporarily assign a static IP address to your laptop, like 192.168.1.103. Then you should be able to log in via cable.

Message 6 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

Hi - the router isnt possesed but my tablet is - on my connected wifi info it shows the IP address to be 192.168.1.31 but when I connected it via cable ......ipconfig shows 192.168.1.1 - phew!

 

Now how do I assign a static address to my laptop ? 

This is going well beyond my level of expertise - but I am persistant and will not be beaten!

thanks

Message 7 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series

If your laptop is running Windows, then follow these steps:

  1. Open the Network and Sharing Center Control Planel
  2. Click on Change Adapter Settings
  3. Double click on the icon for your Ethernet interface
  4. Click on Properties
  5. Click on the line item for IPv4
  6. Click on Configure
  7. Select the option to enter an IP address manually and enter the address and subnet mask
  8. Click OK or Apply to save the changes (You may have to do this to a couple of the open windows)

If your laptop is running OSX, then follow these steps:

  1. Open System Preferences
  2. Click on Network
  3. Click on your Ethernet interface
  4. Click on the pull down menu for Configure IPv4 and select Manually
  5. Enter the IP address and subnet mask
  6. Click Apply

You may also have to unplug and replug the Ethernet cable from your laptop before the change will take effect. Once you are done configuring the two routers, don't forget to go back to your laptop and revert the change so that it obtains an IP address automatically.

Message 8 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

Hi thanks for the help.  
I did recall after I sent my reply how to manually set the IP address.  However need to confirm a couple of things.  The IP address is for the computer and the gateway is the router correct?  So if I want the router to be say 192.168.1.101 that would be entered in the gateway, what would I set the IP to?    Also once I click on manually setting the IP address, the DNS also needs to be set manually what on earth do I set the preferred and alternate DNS server as?
 
Sorry, these are probably very simple questions.
 
Next question assuming I can reset the routers again, and set them in bridge mode with addreses of say 192.168.1.101 and 192.168.1.103 what should I se the start and end range of the primary router to (currently set at start 192.168.1.2 end 192.168.1.254.
 
Thanks again
Message 9 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series


@nalah wrote:
Hi thanks for the help.  
I did recall after I sent my reply how to manually set the IP address.  However need to confirm a couple of things.  The IP address is for the computer and the gateway is the router correct?  

Yes.


 So if I want the router to be say 192.168.1.101 that would be entered in the gateway, what would I set the IP to?

You can use any unused address, so long as it's in the subnet. 192.168.1.200 should work.


Sorry, these are probably very simple questions.
 

No problem.


Next question assuming I can reset the routers again, and set them in bridge mode with addreses of say 192.168.1.101 and 192.168.1.103 what should I se the start and end range of the primary router to (currently set at start 192.168.1.2 end 192.168.1.254.
 

Keep the start as 192.168.1.2. You can change the end to 192.168.1.100. This will reserve 99 IP addresses for use by the DHCP server. 

Message 10 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

excellent info. again thank you.  My question about the DNS settings - unfortunatley when I choose to manually set the IP I also have to manually set the DNS.  Have checked in the main router really dont know what seeting to use for primary and secondary DNS.  What would you recommend?

 

thanks again

Message 11 of 13
TheEther
Guru

Re: wifi routers in series

Sorry, I forgot to answer your question about DNS. You can copy the DNS server addresses from your primary router.

If you can't find them, then you can try searching your ISP's support site for the addresses. Or do a web search for "<myisp> DNS servers". Replace <myisp> with the name of your ISP (e.g. Comcast, AT&T, etc.)

Or you can use Google's servers (8.8.8.8, 8.8.4.4) or OpenDNS's (208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220).
Message 12 of 13
nalah
Tutor

Re: wifi routers in series

Hi - thanks to your help I now have access to both my seconday routers - many thanks!!

I will now go back to my original task of getting them to work in series.   

 

Hopefully with the info. you have provided I will get success.  If not I will unfortunately be back with more questions!

 

thanks again

Message 13 of 13
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