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Bridge/repeater

Discussion in 'Wireless Buying Advice' started by NohatCoder, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    I learned the hard way that ASUS routers (and apparently some others) can only do bridge mode with none/WEP encryption. That seems less than useful.

    What are the best options if I want a router that connects wirelessly to our main router, and then have clients connect both wirelessly and through LAN ports? Speed is not an issue, I assume anything modern is plenty fast for my needs.

    I had the setup sorta working with a Linksys EA6700 running DD-WRT, but that crashed daily.
     
  2. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    I don't believe that's true (for Asus routers). Asus has Repeater mode and Media Bridge (a.k.a. wireless Ethernet bridge), both of which can connect to a parent using WPA2 for example.

    Maybe by "bridge mode" you were referring to WDS mode? WDS is indeed limited to none/WEP, but that's a limitation of WDS itself and would apply to all routers.
     
  3. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    The specific model is RT-N19, and yeah, it is called WDS in the interface, and that is all there is.
     
  4. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    Ah, OK. I've not come across that model before. It seems to be very low spec device. Most of Asus' other routers have the modes I was talking about.

    *Consider something like the RT-AC66U_B1, although I'm sure there are plenty of similar devices from other manufacturers.

    *Checking the manual it appears this particular model doesn't support repeater mode only media bridge mode.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2020
  5. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    I'm also sure that there are plenty devices that do what I want, I just don't know how to tell them from a bunch of seemingly similar devices.

    The N19 specifications page though explicitly states "WAN Bridge support" and "Range extender mode", you see how that could be interpreted as doing what I need?

    So a model number that someone knows does this would be appreciated. And something neither ASUS nor Linksys would be appreciated given my current experience.
     
  6. Val D.

    Val D. Very Senior Member

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    I don't know what experience you have, but I was recently using an ASUS RT-AC66U router from 2012 as a wireless bridge, connected to another router with 1300Mbps link speed and using WPA2-Personal with AES encryption. Setting up takes like 60 seconds.
     
  7. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    I suppose that you use the media bridge mode, that mode is gone in the B1 model manual, and I doubt that I can get the original model anywhere.
     
  8. Val D.

    Val D. Very Senior Member

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  9. Klueless

    Klueless Very Senior Member

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    The Netgear 6150 Range Extender might not be the "best" option but it's certainly an affordable option.
    • My favorite feature is "Fast Lane". You can dedicate one radio for the back haul to the router and leave the other open for clients only. It eliminates the "halving effect" oft mentioned with "Repeaters". On the flip side having to use the 2.4GHz radio could become its own pinch point.
    • LAN ports. It only has one but you could expand on that with a cheap, dumb switch.
    • Configuration. Well, I was able to do it : -)
    Linksys also has some Extenders with "Cross Connect". It looks at which radio the client is using and automatically uses the other radio for the back haul to the router.
     
  10. Val D.

    Val D. Very Senior Member

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    Oh, this is Repeater Mode then, also available in RT-AC66U B1. Media Bridge is for LAN clients only.
     
  11. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    But not mentioned in the manual, so no, I don't think it is there. Compare the two manuals, it is in the RT-AC66U manual, but not the RT-AC66U B1 manual.

    In any case I found the GL iNet products mentioned elsewhere. I wonder if a GL-AR750 https://www.gl-inet.com/products/gl-ar750/ might do the trick? The OpenWRT documentation doesn't seem too clear about how well this would work.
     
  12. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    That seems like an option. Given that I don't care about speed, and only get one ethernet port anyway, do you see any reason not to go with the cheaper EX3700 instead?
     
  13. Val D.

    Val D. Very Senior Member

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    OK, no problem. I had RT-AC66U B1 also, ASUS listed Repeater Mode as Range Extender in specifications above, it’s the same thing.
     
  14. Klueless

    Klueless Very Senior Member

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    No "show stoppers" but;
    • It's Ethernet port is only 100 Mbps rather than full Gigabit.
    • It does not brag about "fast lane" or "cross connect" so it may only be a "repeater" rather than an "extender". (You'd have to check the manual to be sure.)
    • It's AC 700 vs. AC1200
     
  15. NohatCoder

    NohatCoder New Around Here

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    Quick start guides for EX3700 and EX6150 look almost identical, and they both say "extender" so I think it is good. I guess that all their "EX" models are extenders and share these basic features.
     
  16. Klueless

    Klueless Very Senior Member

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    One might wonder why it's less than half the price?

    "caveat emptor" : -)
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2020
    L&LD likes this.