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Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

willyw
Aspirant

Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

The environment is a 5000+ sqft home, 4 levels if you include the basement.  New CAT5e wiring.  Enough distance between houses that there's not much interference.  Replaced an old Asus Dark Knight router because of a vulnerability that Asus seems to not care to fix and thought I'd improve my coverage and overall speed while I was at it so after quite a bit of research, purchased the Orbi RBR50 with a satellite.  Part of what drove my decision to buy the Orbi is the ability to use wired backhaul, allowing me to take advange of the wiring in the house and use more of the radios for clients than for backhaul.

 

Anyway, here's what I've experienced, and I know much of this has been covered and "solved" but no matter what I do, I don't see the results I expect, let alone an improvement over the Asus.  Rather than going overboard with every detail here are some highlights...

 

If I directly wire the satellite to the router and sync them the whole network comes to a halt.  Sometimes it will settle after several minutes and you can use the network again, sometimes it will oscillate from useable to not and sometimes it will not become useable without a reboot.  When I have gotten it to work, the throughput from a wifi host through the satellite to a wired host is terrible at around 20-30Mb.  The same host wired to the same port the satellite was previously wired to (meaning the traffic is traversing the swtich in Orbi router) running the same test (iperf) results in ~450Mb.  Directly wired to the main switch in the house (a Netgear, BTW), bypassing the Orbis altogether results in over 900Mb.  So even there the Orbi main router is stuggling to handle wired, gigabit traffic from a single client--not exactly confidience inspiring that this situation will improve as I try different configurations.  The next test was to remove the satellite and run the same test against the Orbi router on wifi.  I was sitting with my Mac, connected at a TX rate (according to the Mac anyway) of around 700+Mb, about 3 feet from the router.  The results this time were ~450Mb.  Now, you could say that it could be the port that the router was connected to so I disconnected the router and wired the Mac into the same port with iperf results over 960Mb.

 

So to summarize, getting the satellite to work on wired backhaul is more difficult than you'd expect from a product at this pricepoint, especially from Netgear and, now this is the thing that I makes me super frustrated, even if you get everything to work the performance of the Orbis is not great--certainly doesn't live up to the specs printed on the box.

 

Oh nearly forgot to mention that the satellite and router are on firmware version V2.1.4.16.  Also I've factory reset both devices more than once and followed the various bits of voodoo that people have prescribed with disconnecting everything, waiting for the right shade of blue, etc.  It shouldn't be this hard.

 

Finally, I'm a tech guy.  I have worked in this industry a long time and am accustom to things not being easy or working as expected but this is a bit silly.

 

Thanks in advance for any solutions you may offer!

Model: RBK50| Orbi AC3000 High-Performance Tri-Band WiFi System
Message 1 of 4

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FURRYe38
Guru

Re: Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

What is the Mfr and model# of the IP modem the Orbi is connected too?

 

30 feet is recommended in between them to begin with depending upon building materials.

What channels are you using? Auto? Try setting manual channel 1, 6 or 11 on 2.4Ghz and any unused channel on 5Ghz.
Any Wifi Neighbors near by? If so, how many?
Try disabling the following and see:
MIMO, Daisy Chain, Fast Roaming, IPv6 and Set 20/40Mhz Coexistence to 40Mhz only. Save settings and reboot the router and satellite(s).
Set up IP address reservations ON the router for the satellites. Wired or wireless connected.

 

To get wired back haul working well, you need to disconnect the main LAN network from the ORbi router. Then 1 at a time, connect a satellite via wireless to the router, you can do this in the same room as the router. Once you get the satellite connected wirelessly and it has a top led BLUE, connect the LAN cable between the router and satellite. You need to wait 5 minutes for the top led on the satellite to turn on BLUE. Once it does, do a IP address reservation on the Orbi router. Save and apply. I would turn off the satellite then follow same process for the next follow on satellite. Do this for all satellites. Once you have them set up, power down and place satellites in remote locations, then power on one at a time. Top led should turn on BLUE. Once you have all satellites ON and working and verify access thru them, then connect your main LAN network back to the router. 

My Setup ISP SparkLight | Internet Cable 1000↓/50↑ CBR750 Modem | Wifi Router CBR750(v.7) | Switches NG GS105/8 and XS505M | 

Additional NG HW: C7800/CAX80/CM1100/CM1200/CM2000, Orbi: CBK40, CBK752, RBK50, RBK853, RBK752, RBK953, SXK30 | NightHawk: R7000, R7800, R7960P, R8000, R8500, RAXE500, RAX50, XR450, EX7500/EX7700, GS308v3

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Message 2 of 4

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FURRYe38
Guru

Re: Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

What is the Mfr and model# of the IP modem the Orbi is connected too?

 

30 feet is recommended in between them to begin with depending upon building materials.

What channels are you using? Auto? Try setting manual channel 1, 6 or 11 on 2.4Ghz and any unused channel on 5Ghz.
Any Wifi Neighbors near by? If so, how many?
Try disabling the following and see:
MIMO, Daisy Chain, Fast Roaming, IPv6 and Set 20/40Mhz Coexistence to 40Mhz only. Save settings and reboot the router and satellite(s).
Set up IP address reservations ON the router for the satellites. Wired or wireless connected.

 

To get wired back haul working well, you need to disconnect the main LAN network from the ORbi router. Then 1 at a time, connect a satellite via wireless to the router, you can do this in the same room as the router. Once you get the satellite connected wirelessly and it has a top led BLUE, connect the LAN cable between the router and satellite. You need to wait 5 minutes for the top led on the satellite to turn on BLUE. Once it does, do a IP address reservation on the Orbi router. Save and apply. I would turn off the satellite then follow same process for the next follow on satellite. Do this for all satellites. Once you have them set up, power down and place satellites in remote locations, then power on one at a time. Top led should turn on BLUE. Once you have all satellites ON and working and verify access thru them, then connect your main LAN network back to the router. 

My Setup ISP SparkLight | Internet Cable 1000↓/50↑ CBR750 Modem | Wifi Router CBR750(v.7) | Switches NG GS105/8 and XS505M | 

Additional NG HW: C7800/CAX80/CM1100/CM1200/CM2000, Orbi: CBK40, CBK752, RBK50, RBK853, RBK752, RBK953, SXK30 | NightHawk: R7000, R7800, R7960P, R8000, R8500, RAXE500, RAX50, XR450, EX7500/EX7700, GS308v3

Message 2 of 4
willyw
Aspirant

Re: Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

Thanks for the solution you provided, FURRYe38.

 

As closely as I could, I followed your instructions, but couldn't follow everything because I failed to disclose one key bit of info about my configuration--I'm using the Orbis in AP mode.  The important thing is that my final result is that I have good throughput when connected to the satellite, which is a first!

 

To answer your questions about the environment:

IP modem -- I don't have a modem.  It's a gigabit ethernet connection to a pfSense firewall.

Channels -- Currently Auto and working well.

Neighbors -- We are all far enough apart that we can see each other's access points but the signal is weak so not much interference.

 

Thanks again!

 

Message 3 of 4
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: Orbi RBR50 + satellite - Abysmal performance

Glad you got it working better. Enjoy. Smiley Wink

My Setup ISP SparkLight | Internet Cable 1000↓/50↑ CBR750 Modem | Wifi Router CBR750(v.7) | Switches NG GS105/8 and XS505M | 

Additional NG HW: C7800/CAX80/CM1100/CM1200/CM2000, Orbi: CBK40, CBK752, RBK50, RBK853, RBK752, RBK953, SXK30 | NightHawk: R7000, R7800, R7960P, R8000, R8500, RAXE500, RAX50, XR450, EX7500/EX7700, GS308v3

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