Orbi WiFi 7 RBE973
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[Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

st1led-
Aspirant

[Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

I have a RBR752 with a router/satellite setup in AP mode and the guest wifi enabled (FW version V4.6.11.1). I can't manage to get VPNs to work on devices connected over the guest network, even though VPNs work just fine on devices connected to the main network.

 

For example, if I use the NordVPN Android app while connected on the guest network, I can't really open any page or use any web service. If I switch back to the normal wifi I experience no issue. I tried also with other VPNs (e.g., BlockadaPlus) with similar results.

 

Is there any setting I need to change to make VPNs work over the guest wifi? I tried looking into the router admin page but couldn't really find anything (most options are disabled anyway in AP mode).

Message 1 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Message 2 of 14
st1led-
Aspirant

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Thanks for replying. Can you elaborate a bit? The link doesn't really imply that VPNs are disabled in AP mode, just that some setting about them (maybe directly routing all traffic through the network via the VPN?) is grayed out.

 

I can connect via VPNs just fine in AP mode, just not on the guest network.

Message 3 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

I don't believe any VPN configurations are supported on the Guest Network in any mode. Most home Guest Networks have direct access to the WAN side of the router so any VPN that's needed would just pass thru and any configuration would probably be done on the client device. 

Message 4 of 14
st1led-
Aspirant

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Configuring the VPN on the client device is exactly what I'm doing: I have an Android device connected on the guest network, but can't get to work NordVPN or BlokadaPlus or any other VPN app that proves the client device configuration. I'm not trying to set up a VPN on the router side to tunnel all connected devices connections.

Message 5 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Something to discuss with the Mfr of the VPN application. 

Check the host routers configuration as well. 

If the Orbi is in AP mode, then all it's doing is working as a pass thru or tunnel and would be passing all data thru the pipe to the host router. 

Guest Network should be grayed out in AP mode. 

Message 6 of 14
st1led-
Aspirant

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

I'll try to check this with the ISP. However, Guest Network is not grayed out in AP mode -- and it actually works normally apart from VPN connections.

Message 7 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Can you post a screen capture if the Guest Network here please? 

 

I'll check on this. The list of features in AP mode has the GN not supported. I'll check on this...

Message 8 of 14
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Netgear is not terribly precise at times.  My understanding is:

  • The Guest WiFi SSID/password can be enabled, which allows the owner to grant access to "Guests" without compromising the primary SSID password, but
  • None of the isolation features of Guest WiFi exist.  i.e.
    • Guest devices do not receive IP addresses in a different subnet as they do when the Orbi is in router mode
    • There is no capability to keep Guest devices from communicating with devices on the primary network (or with each other).

I can sign up for a NordVPN account "free trial" and put an RBR50 into Access Point mode to see what happens to WiFi devices that attempt to use a VPN service on Guest WiFi.  However, I do not have a 750 so:

  • If the RBR50 Guest WiFi in AP mode does not allow VPN, that would tend to support the hypothesis that Guest WiFi in some unknown way interferes with VPN.
  • If the RBR50 Guest WiFi in AP mode allows VPN to succeed, that does not prove that the 750 will as well.

More Fun with Orbi!!!

Message 9 of 14
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Experiment a Success!

 

I have a spare RBR50 which is intended to replace the primary RBR50 when (if?) it fails.  The spare is connected to the primary Orbi.  On this spare:

  • I Enabled the Guest WiFi, with no security (because it will be turned off later this afternoon before the Russian hackers drive down my street).
  • Changed spare Orbi from router mode to Access Point (AP) mode.
  • All good.  The spare Orbi now reports having a different IP address (no longer 10.0.0.1).
  • Connected Android Galaxy S6 Lite tablet to the new Guest WiFi.  The tablet is assigned an IP address by the primary router and shows up in both the primary Orbi and spare Orbi Attached Devices display.
  • Went to NordVPN and signed up for "Standard" VPN account (with intentions of cancelling within the 30 day free trial).
  • Loaded NordVPN Android app on the tablet.  I did not sign up for the premium super duper NordVPN that also bakes cookies and corrects spelling.
  • Opened NordVPN and signed in to my new NordVPN account.
  • NordVPN reports my "new public IP address" is something I have never seen before (to be expected).
  • Opened Chrome Browser.  whatsmyip.com reports my public IP address is the same as NordVPN says it is.
  • Opened Amazon Shopping app  All good. (did not buy anything)
  • Opened Google Play App.  All good.

The conclusions are:

  • The RBR50 router supports Guest WiFi in AP mode.
  • The RBR50 router in AP mode supports Android NordVPN.
  • If the RBR750 does not support NordVPN, I have no clue why not.

Any other experiments I should conduct before undoing all this?

 

Message 10 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Apparently past few FW versions on Orbi AX have had GN support enabled in AP mode. 
Passed this on to NG to see what there official stance is vs what there KB says. 

Thanks for confirming the 50 series @CrimpOn 

Message 11 of 14
st1led-
Aspirant

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

A small update: no luck getting in touch with the ISP. They just generically recommend internet access through their native router, rather than "custom" setups like the one I have with my ORBI in AP mode after their branded router (Zyxel EX5501-B0).

 

I temporarily solved this issue by using the ORBI in Router mode, where VPNs work just fine. This screws up the ISP IPTV services with lags and freezes happening all the time (which is exactly why I used the AP setup), but that's another issue I suppose...

Message 12 of 14
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

Be sure to enabled DMZ on the ISP Modem for the RBR if you have the modem in router mode. Disable ALL wifi on the ISP modem a well. Should help with wifi problems. 

Message 13 of 14
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: [Orbi RBR750] VPNs don't work over guest network

DMZ appears to be in section 11.4 of the User Manual for the Zyxel EX5505-B0:

https://www.manualslib.com/manual/1864676/Zyxel-Communications-Ex5501-B0.html?page=180#manual 

Message 14 of 14
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