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Best Connectivity Options - Mixed Network of AC86U's and AX3000

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zephyr325

New Around Here
Hi, all. Apologies if this is the wrong forum group to post in; I didn't know which one to post in as it's about an AX3000/58U as well as AC86U's. :)

I'm currently setup with 3 x RT-AC86U's with one acting as a primary router and the other two setup in mesh mode as the internet connection comes in on one end of our house. The first mesh node connects via 5G to the main router, and the 2nd mesh node connects (via 5G as well) to the first mesh node; essentially, they're chained in a line to each other. My internet connection is less than 1GB, and I'm only using 1 LAN port on the main router. I've usually got 35-40 active wifi connections at any one point (3 kids! lol) and I'm using Merlin firmware.

I had a buddy of mine upgrade his router and I've now got an RT-AX3000 (AX58U) I can use in the house. I've done some research on the AX standard potentially providing better connectivity to more devices but I'm not sure if that really applies to the 86U's in mesh mode as they're not AX capable. The 58U also has a tri-core processor vs. the 86U's dual core, but both models have the same 512MB of RAM.

Side note - I'm pretty interested in running native SNMP on the main router for monitoring purposes, but that's not a must-have. The 86U's only support the mini-snmpd, but I'd prefer to use full SNMP + extensibility that the 58U can do.

My question - any thoughts on using the AX3000 as the primary router and the 86U's as mesh nodes, or should I just throw the AX3000/58U on the network as another mesh node?
 
The AX58U may work well as your main router. But as the AC86U's only support WPA2 keep the AX58U on WPA2. Start out with the WIFI defaults, including Dual Band SmartConnect, and after things settle in for a while make minor WIFI settings changes to customize your environment.
 
Thanks for the advice, and I'm up and running in test mode with that now.

Interesting side note - I backed up the AC86U's config, and for giggles, I tried restoring the AX58U with that file (rather than manually rebuild it) - and that worked perfectly! I didn't realize that config files were interchangeable between models.
 
Interesting side note - I backed up the AC86U's config, and for giggles, I tried restoring the AX58U with that file (rather than manually rebuild it) - and that worked perfectly! I didn't realize that config files were interchangeable between models.

Conventional wisdom is to only restore a config file to the hardware/firmware that created it.

OE
 
Completely agree, and what I fully expected! But I just wanted to experiment with what happened, and when the config said it successfully restored, I went back to all the screenshot's I'd taken of my original AC86U vs. what showed on the new AX58U, everything matched. I wanted to try that as I've got a pretty complex setup of port mappings, fine-tuning WIFI parameters, etc. If something shows up over the next few days as not having worked correctly, I'll repost.
 
By flashing an old backup config file from one router to another you're setting your network/router up for failure. No matter how much time you think you've saved.

The security is compromised, the performance is compromised, and your network's dependability and reliability are also compromised by doing so.

As all networks are unique (environment, device setup, client devices, and actual network usage), I can't say when this failure will materialize, but I know it will (and usually at the most inopportune time too).

If you are serious about testing the new equipment you got fairly, I suggest fully resetting the router using the links below. In your case, I would definitely use the 'nuclear reset' steps (see links below).




 

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