Orbi WiFi 7 RBE973
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Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

rvirani
Tutor

RBR960 device limits on IoT?

Are there any concurrent device limits on the IoT network on the new RBR960? The spec sheet states the mesh system can handle 200 devices, but I am having challenges connecting all of my IoT devices to the router simultaneously. That 200 figure is also not broken down by main network vs guest network vs IoT network.

 

I have the router and two satellites, which should theoretically cover 9,000 sq ft, placed strategically around my roughly 6,000 sq ft home. My home has about 150-175 connected devices at any given time with about 30 of those being wired devices. I am specifically having trouble connecting 94 recessed lights on the perimeter of my home simultaneously to the IoT network. I haven't tried connecting these to the main network yet, as that would be a pretty heavy lift to update the wi-fi settings on all of these devices. I have the IoT network broadcasting in 2.4ghz only as the majority of these IoT devices are 2.4ghz only. The 94 recessed lights I am having trouble with are definitely 2.4ghz only. 

 

I was thinking about putting my older RB850 mesh system (router with 4 satellites) into AP mode and connecting them to my new RB960 system for added coverage, but I am not sure that the wi-fi signal extending outside is the problem. On the 5ghz and my iPhone is getting 175mbps down at about 60 feet outside of my house. 

 

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Message 1 of 12
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

Page 155 of the User Manual says this:

CrimpOn_0-1669223143471.png

My guess is that 127 is a hard limit and has nothing to do with which SSID the device connects to (primary, guest, IoT). Nor would adding another WiFi system in Access Point (AP) mode help with that limit.

 

The key may depend on the app used to control this brand of lights.

 

With an 850 product on hand, I would experiment with connecting the 850 (as a router):

  • Reduce the power level of the 5G radio to 25% (the lowest possible) to reduce interference with the new 960 system.
  • Set the 2.4G WiFi channel to avoid interference with the 960 system.
  • Connect a smart phone to the 850.
  • Connect one bulb to the 850 system.

Then, see if the smart phone app will control that bulb when the phone is on the 960 system.

 

I have a similar situation where I have KASA smart plugs.  Most are connected to the primary WiFi network, and four are connected to a different router.  No matter which network the phone is connected to, the app can control all of the switches.  (Which makes sense because the app allows control of products installed in different physical locations when the phone is not at physically at any of them.)

 

94 is a substantial number.  One wonders if the products based on Zigbee or other standards can handle this many?

Message 2 of 12
rvirani
Tutor

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

Thank you for your response. How did you arrive at the 127 number? The reason I decided to upgrade to the RB960 system was less about the new 6ghz band and more about the 200 device limit. If the router cannot handle 200 devices or anywhere close to that, then that’s pretty disappointing.
Message 3 of 12
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?


@rvirani wrote:
Thank you for your response. How did you arrive at the 127 number? The reason I decided to upgrade to the RB960 system was less about the new 6ghz band and more about the 200 device limit. If the router cannot handle 200 devices or anywhere close to that, then that’s pretty disappointing.

I just opened the manual and found page 133.  Don't know where the 200 number can be found.  Sounds a lot like Marketing Speak to me (rather than engineering).

 

Since none of us are Netgear employees, we have zero knowledge of what's actually going on inside Netgear.

Message 4 of 12
rizwan
Initiate

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

Yes, I saw that number too, but that is the same number listed in the RB850 and RB750 manuals that I know for sure cannot handle 127 much less 100 and 75 devices that those marketing sheets state respectively.
Message 5 of 12
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

The key factor might be "amount of WiFi network traffic  generated by each node".  On TV streaming 4K video can consume up to 25MB of bandwidth.  Thus, 40 TVs all streaming at once would be more than a gigabit internet connection can support and certainly more than a WiFi channel can support.

 

Typical Internet of Things (IoT) devices consume almost zero bandwidth.  (Although it would be interesting to see how much of a bandwidth spike there is when 94 lights turn on or off at the same time!)

 

This will be an interesting puzzle to solve. With the benefit of hindsight, perhaps it would have been more practical to automate electrical circuits rather than individual bulbs.

Message 6 of 12
rvirani
Tutor

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

The 94 lights are on 4 automated switches that are zigbee and controlled by my xfinity home hub/app. I was able to get all but 2 connected concurrently last night by providing an address reservation for each device, but still no luck on connecting all of them at once. I may try to discontinue the IoT network all together and see if I can connect everything concurrently to the router. fingers crossed. 

 

I tried a three eero mesh network and a three deco mesh network (both the newest 6E systems but without a dedicated IoT network) and both got all of the devices connected after about 30 minutes. And those systems are 25% of the cost of the Orbi 963. I do want to stick with the Orbi system since it has been a wonderful system for me for so many years (this is my third mesh system), but it is really frustrating that it isn't working!

Message 7 of 12
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?


@rvirani wrote:

The 94 lights are on 4 automated switches that are zigbee and controlled by my xfinity home hub/app. I was able to get all but 2 connected concurrently last night by providing an address reservation for each device, but still no luck on connecting all of them at once.


This is part of the reason I have been reluctant to plunge headlong into the "Internet of Things" (which technology to commit to?)

Zigbee apparently has a theoretical capacity of 65,000 devices.  So, the Zigbee switches can turn an entire string of lights on and off, but cannot  do anything to the bulbs directly (such as change color.  If the lights are all ordinary white bulbs, there seems to be no reason to access them directly.).  The bulbs support WiFi, but not Zigbee, so it requires 94 IP addresses to be able to change their color (and could also be used to turn them on/off and thus make the Zigbee switches redundant).

 

I get dizzy just thinking about it.

 

Sorry not to be more help.  The turkey dinner was fine, but the pie has sent my blood sugar through  the roof!

Message 8 of 12
Musrmgr
Initiate

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

I had the RBK850 and it could not handle my 140 devices. (75 Kasa light switches, 20 ring cameras, and other various IoT devices.
I upgraded to the 960 this week and have the same disconnect issues.
I tried running only 2.4 and then both 2.4 and 5 on the IoT but that didn’t help.

What settings should I have for the IoT network and the network as a whole to get my IOT devices to stop dropping, slow, etc…
Message 9 of 12
rizwan
Initiate

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?

Correct, the 960 series cannot handle 200 devices or at least not the majority over wi-fi as it is currently marketed to be able to do. After days upon days on the chat and phone with Netgear tech support, they stopped responding to any troubleshooting efforts. I went ahead and returned all of the Netgear products I had purchased and switched to the Ubiquiti DreamMachine SE. Best decision I have ever made. Each AP can handle 300+ devices depending on the AP model. You can mix and match. Right now I regularly have 160 devices online at night when all of the lightbulbs turn on. The customization and fine tuning options on the radio power and radio bands are far superior to any Netgear product.

 

I believe the issue with the Netgear products is that each radio band can have a maximum of 32 devices that can be connected simultaneously and even then, the router itself cannot handle all of the traffic. I believe that to be the issue, but I cannot be sure because Netgear totally gave up on helping me. 

 

My advice - if you have that many devices, look into a small-biz setup like the Ubiquiti Unify product line. Message me if you want to know more details about my setup. Good luck!

Message 10 of 12
Mikey94025
Hero

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?


@rizwan wrote:

I believe the issue with the Netgear products is that each radio band can have a maximum of 32 devices that can be connected simultaneously and even then, the router itself cannot handle all of the traffic.


This has not been my experience with my household of devices.  I run 70+ devices, mostly 2.4Ghz but including a fair number of 5Ghz phones/laptops/Nest cameras, on my Orbi 9-series and previously used the 8-series product with these same devices.

Message 11 of 12
Mikey94025
Hero

Re: RBR960 device limits on IoT?


@Musrmgr wrote:
I tried running only 2.4 and then both 2.4 and 5 on the IoT but that didn’t help.

What settings should I have for the IoT network and the network as a whole to get my IOT devices to stop dropping, slow, etc…

Have you turned off AX mode for 2.4Ghz?  That helps with compatibility for older 2.4Ghz wireless devices which cannot benefit from AX anyway.  I also used to set CTS/RTS Threshold to 2347 for the same reasons, but the latest firmware doesn't make that available anymore.

 

Your devices disconnecting (dropping) or having connectivity issues (slow) may be due to other reasons than having a lot of them.  Do you have too many satellites for your home coverage (if yes, try experimenting with just one satellite and if that helps try reducing power)?

 

Message 12 of 12
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