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Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

whitedp
Tutor

Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

I often see devices in the router's connected wifi devices list that are shown with dash (-) as in the bottom 2 in the attached screenshot (outlined in green).

 

Nowhere can I find what the dashes mean. Sometimes, I cannot reach (ping) those devices. But sometimes I can. So I cannot even guess.

 

Does anyone know the meaning? And how to get rid of them?

 

Thanks

Model: R6400|AC1750 Smart WiFi Router
Message 1 of 8
DexterJB
NETGEAR Moderator

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

Hi @whitedp, are you able to identify if those devices are yours? It is possible that they are devices that are currently offline and not connected to your network/WiFi.

 

Dexter

NETGEAR Team

Message 2 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

Hi and thanks. I have virtually all of my stuff on static IP. So yes, I can easily ID the devices. I wondered about them being offline and have actually been able to ping them often times when I tried.

 

So I don't really know. And that's why I was seeking a definitive answer here.

 

Cheers

Model: R6400|AC1750 Smart WiFi Router
Message 3 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

Here it has happened again. And this time it shows no IP address. But it is on 192.168.1.29 statically assigned. You can see that it can be pinged. So why the devil is it shown with a dash (-) and why is there no IP shown? This is quite frustrating. You'd think someone at Netgear would know what this is/means.

Model: R6400|AC1750 Smart WiFi Router
Message 4 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

I find it simply astounding that I cannot get an answer to this question from Netgear. Surely, they have written their router code to do what ever is happening here. So surely they KNOW what this means. Yet my question (and similar asked by others) remain completely unanswered.

 

I did get PM from DexterJB and I appreciate the response. But so far there has been absolutely no resolution of what would seem to be a very simple and direct query.

 

This is very frustrating.

Message 5 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

I am starting to wonder if this is the result to too many devices being connected to the router (or at least the router's 2.4GHz band). I have read elsewhere that there is a limit of 32 devices per wifi band. And my list is maybe 20 on the 2.4 GHz band with 3-4 max on the 5GHz band and 3-4 wired devices. So this shouldn't be the problem, right?

 

But I have recently disabled some wifi thermometers I use during the winter months and this has reduced the number of devices on the 2.4GHz band. Since doing that, I have not yet seen the -- happen under SSID. Perhaps it is too soon to be definitive here. I will keep watch.

Message 6 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

Spoiler
Well, I think my theory that this might be related to the number of connected devices is up a tree as this just happened again after I have removed 3-4 devices.
Message 7 of 8
whitedp
Tutor

Re: Nighthawk R6400 - Connected Devices Shown With Dash (-)

This is an update... After several months, I have finally resolved the issue. I believe that all of this is the result of too many devices being simultaneously connected to wifi on the router. At least to the 2.4Ghz channel. I do not know for certain what the limit is or if it is a function of the hardware or the firmware. I have read many posts in many places and the number is unclear. But there definitely is a point at which connections just start to drop. Note that this was NOT a throughput issue as most of my devices as IoT or smart home devices and really transmit very little information. The router is not really giving any warning of this but the dash (-) may be an indicator.

 

Netgear was helpful to some extent in my resolving this problem. The sent me a v2 of the R6400 in hopes it might just fix things - kind of an experiment. After some initial testing I discovered that the connected devices UI in the v2 was so different that there was no way to compare apples and oranges. So I just started stress-testing, adding every wifi device I could put my hands on - most on the 2.4Ghz channel as they were older IoT devices that can only use 2.4Ghz. It soon became clear that there is a limit and that even though the v.2 box clearly states "supports 25 devices", I was able to encounter problems at about 17 wifi devices total.

 

In doing more reading, I decided to try re-purposing an old router as a 2.4Ghz wifi access point wired to the R6400. This is not ideal in that it introduces a new SSID into the mix and I had to find another clear channel to use. But it has definitely helped a huge amount! My wifi load is not split across the 2 SSIDs/channels and all of the devices on the access point appear to the R6400 as wired devices, not wifi devices. I was able to reach a total of 29 devices connected (from the R6400's point of view) without any problems at all. At least 10 were devices connected to the access point, 3 were directly connected to the R6400's switch ports, and 3-4 were on the R6400's 5Ghz. The remainder were on the R6400's 2.4Ghz.

 

I also started looking into a possible new router that claims it can support many more devices. Such claims are becoming more and more visible in the marketplace and this makes sense as more and more IoT and smart home devices are being used. But none of the routers I found clarified the details of the device limit. For example: (a) is it a "hard" limit or somehow "soft" and variable based upon other conditions, (b) does the limit apply to all connection means taken together or is it per connection means (ethernet, 2.4Ghz, and 5Ghz), and (c) what does the router do when the limit is exceeded (is there some explicit warning, are new connections simply refused, etc). Given these uncertainties, I will just stick with what I have now for the time being.

Message 8 of 8
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