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Replace failing 60m catV cable with d'link DIR655, belkin... Ap/bridge

Discussion in 'General Wireless Discussion' started by cwinte, Feb 26, 2019.

  1. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    First post, sorry if I've missed existing info on the forum. I did spend an hour search and browsing and found useful info but think best to put my situation... Sorry this is going to be long...
    Office in garden, about 120ft from house, semi-rural so not a lot of visible wifi signals. For last 12 years my catV cable run around house, up fence line, under paving to greenhouse and a DIR655 as access point back to Virgin superhub (in router mode, serving the house etc). I was getting 75Mb measured throughput to Macs in my office with that PLUS syslogd-ng (macports and self-config daemon, log rollover etc) collection of router events from DIR655 on port 514 collated into my syslog managed under lnav in terminal. I like that.

    A week or so ago in a windy spell I started to see WAN cable disconnect/reconnects in DIR logs. Getting internet connection back up has been increasingly troublesome (I can see DIR but not further typically; some combination of router reboots and replugs of wires either end and cycle wifi was getting me back up but not these days). Wireshark showed a great deal of reset, retx, etc packets. Stats on DIR interface also showed the problems. Last 2 days (in UK) were warm and gentle breeze but I could not get my link up at all. Very time wasteful and frustrating...
    Not practical to relay that wire due to growth, sheds arrived etc. and maybe something nibbles or rubs wires in that run. Did not want to wire all the way to office in case of lightning.

    My workaround yesterday was to put the DIR in a side shed on a new catV at best point with line of sight to office and only 1 thin polycarbonate roofing sheet en-route. This keeps my logging and gave me best s/n and strength. Getting errors and drops in stats on router but workable - for a while.
    Getting about 25Mb throughput on Speedtest. RSSI -75db, S/n 86db, 57Mb nominal estimate by the Mac, 2.4GHz, channel 3)

    NEXT OPTIONS
    I could try and replace/join new sections into the long catV (crimp tool, RJ45s, through coupler etc) but guessing where the damage is and no TDR to measure where. Just start with the easy ends and give it a go?

    I could go for a newer, better router (though I want the log, security and admin features and stability more than big throughput. I only get 85Mb right close to the V-hub anyway). What I could see locally did not satisfy. Would be glad to hear suggestions and likely benefits re speed and packet reliability.

    I could also put some bridge / repeater in the half-way point greenhouse. I have a Belkin 54g (F5D7231-4) available and tried that today but various web notes were not all that helpful. Was unsure if it is trying to operate its own DNS, subrange of 192.168.<as used by DIR>, if I should partition the ranges, use different range and NAT. I got it on the same channel, SSID and could talk to it from the office. The house end could also see it attached to the DIR but I felt I was wasting too much time in my ignorance of what I was attempting. Welkin seemed to say it was only designed to work with their router
    Wireless bridging works with the following models only: F5D7230-4 54g Wireless Cable/DSL Gateway Router F5D7130 54g Wireless Network Access point

    The following firmware version must be installed on the AP and the Router for proper operation:
    F5D7230-4: Version 1.01.08 or higher
    F5D7130: Version 1.01.08 or higher
    And it was a 7231 anyway, but did have a screen for bridge mode... but maybe it wanted to be host to a 713x and be told the MAC address of it as AP... https://www.belkin.com/update/files/F5D7130_WirelessBridge.pdf

    Plus I might have trouble addressing my syslog packets from the DIR across any NAT to any separate IP range for my log collection. Raising further config/DMZ/routing complexity.

    I could do combinations of the above.
    I could wish I had time to play with all that and do nothing else, but...

    Ideally, I'd like my network to be flatter so every device (house and office) are on 192.168.0/x which would allow more (& simpler) interoperation options (at the cost of less security when the kids mates arrive?!).

    Hope that is enough, not too much. And thanks for getting this far!!
     
  2. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    What about some contact cleaner? In 12 years you can build some crud up. Unplug, spray with contact cleaner, let dry then reconnect. It might help. If you do them one at a time it may give you some insight to where your problem is.
     
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  3. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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  4. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    Mmm, I take your point but both ends are indoors yet there is a clear correlation of the line faults with things that would move the external cable run: hot/cold cycle (freezing to 20C in 6 hours) and wind moving the cable or bushes next to cable. The RJ45 pins do actually look pretty clean plus there was no gradual arrival of the faults if something was building up over the years. It came on overnight (or day).
    There was a fox damage in the greenhouse some 8 years ago, he bit through one line of one pair a few feet from the router + also damaged plastic insulator on one other wire. I gave physical reinforcing to the join and twisted ends together of the cut wire and then soldered.
    I did look closely the other day at the frayed insulator wondering if that had corroded / oxidised. While I decided it was OK I also decided that it could not be wind affected in that location BUT if I go out with new RJ plugs and crimp tool that section is the first to go, easy to do and test!
    Another symptom was that after 3 windy days where constant line dropout was first was seen then I had 2 days of virtually no problems, good throughput back up at 75Mb. Thought it had gone away, if it were crud at connections I do not think I would have seen that.
    But very good to know about the contact cleaner - must be something similar here in UK...
     
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  5. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Yes, the details matter. Thank you for providing them. Please let us know how you make out. :)
     
  6. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    Re-reading my initial notes and your ideas I notice that I did do cumulatively more plug and unplug, especially on the "last days" when I seemed unable to get things back to life. SO maybe the contacts DO play a part. I'll do the fox damaged end and look really closely at the other to balance impact of muck vs impact of my out-of-practice crimping!
    The plugs were certainly a bit stiff to release and remove, mostly the clip but all indicative!
    And THANKYOU!!
     
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  7. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    I'd still appreciate any ideas on if I could find a better router (much as I hate wasting $$$) for speed and/or a flat (non NAT) network AND ALSO ON the wireless bridge set-up detail as that Belkin has sat un-used for 5 years in a corner of that greenhouse, plenty of webs (but not world wide).

    Not sure if I should make this a different posting but I did try putting the catV from my base hub into one of the 4 switching ethernet ports of the DIR655 i.e. not the normal WAN/modem port. That gave me access to the house IP range getting DHCP from the base (Virgin) hub. First time I ever saw and logged on to the base Virgin hub from my office. I was still running over the DIR wifi and still getting the 25Mb/s speed...
    BUT I did notice quite a lot of network errors which I found no trace of on the internet:
    Feb 25 18:40:58 ⋮ kernel[0]: IO80211AWDLPeerManager::getAwdlElectionParams electionId mismatch (0, 0) private (0 , 4294967295)
    Feb 25 18:41:28 --- last message repeated 29 times ---
    Feb 25 18:41:28 ⋮ kernel[0]: IO80211AWDLPeerManager::getAwdlElectionParams electionId mismatch (0, 0) private (0 , 4294967295)
    Feb 25 18:41:59 --- last message repeated 13 times ---

    These may not have been all the symptoms, I can't recall perfectly the detail on that. Maybe I could do some log digging...
    However those errors (on the office Mac) stopped the moment I stopped real time monitoring signal strength and s/n [using Core Utilities>Network Diagnostics|Monitor (cmd-7)] and I left it all at that with more pressing "get back online" issues and configured in the normal way catV into the WAN socket on the DIR 655.

    The advice always seems to be to use the wan port to link to base hub from an AP mode router. But it seemed like there were other things possible. Any good resources on what can be done in that way? What NAT and IP range options can/should be deployed in the AP router?
     
  8. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    It probably would be best to plan on replacing the DIR655 router as there is no support for it. There are hacks being discovered all the time. Without vender support you are vulnerable. Your router is your main line of defense for your network. If the DIR655 is not your main router then disregard. It is hard to tell without a diagram with what where.
     
  9. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    The DIR655 is not my main router, I mentioned the Virgin superhub is the main modem/router, not that I rate it very highly.
    My network issues started being noticed early January, when I started making notes about the times my office would fall back, typically overnight, from the DIR655 to pick up the much weaker and slower Virgin superb signal. Here is the first logged evidence of occurrence:
    [2018-12-21_15,15,43.345033]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,11.871102]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-21_18,34,47.242739]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/ [2019-01-02_14,16,12.166099]=AssocFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-22_18,08,14.345560]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,12.235320]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-24_08,36,21.545986]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,15.363900]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-24_09,11,52.635700]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,21.286236]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-24_11,50,40.332571]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,25.228319]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-24_12,21,24.493389]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,25.295795]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-27_13,40,09.412034]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,28.338623]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-27_15,48,16.886308]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,29.213913]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-27_15,57,00.976939]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-02_14,16,29.282074]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-27_15,57,05.411027]=AuthFail:sts:2_rsn:0/ [2019-01-02_14,16,32.317989]=AuthFail:sts:5_rsn:0/
    [2018-12-27_15,57,05.476494]=RoamFail:sts:1_rsn:2/ [2019-01-03_11,22,08.473299]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2018-12-31_14,51,41.581803]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-03_12,33,00.658790]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2018-12-31_15,51,41.482214]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-03_13,16,10.739615]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2018-12-31_16,38,25.513826]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-03_13,47,04.455722]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2019-01-01_16,23,57.560665]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-03_15,50,10.162447]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2019-01-01_20,51,41.448994]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-03_19,07,33.685495]=BeaconLost/
    [2019-01-01_21,51,41.482913]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-04_17,47,58.280961]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2019-01-01_23,34,41.496468]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-04_18,51,27.332174]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/
    [2019-01-02_03,52,18.575533]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-04_19,03,02.182991]=BeaconLost/
    [2019-01-02_07,35,37.486317]=DeauthInd:sts:0_rsn:6/ [2019-01-05_14,45,38.804187]=AssocFail:sts:2_rsn:0/
    This is 2 column file listing from /Library/Logs/CrashReporter/CoreCapture/com.apple.iokit.IO80211Family/
    From 0 to 13 events per day. Many of these events, in daytime, had the symptom of a hang in internet access of 10-20 secs and then a restart of normal 75Mb speed, sometimes failing over to the 'wrong' router. Events are often quite clumped, looking at 2 Jan there were 12 between 14:16 and 14:17 (uses hr,min,sec filename format)

    I was not able to get to the bottom of what these crash dumps were telling me or why they happened, just looked like that was the way it tore down and restarted the wifi and protocols stack. I have not spent much time researching into this as it has not got up my list high enough!

    I thought I noticed a recent mid-Feb rise in the number of Deauth activity in the DIR655 logs, maybe someone was exploring... The two most intense clumps were both midweek afternoon in school holiday time, but there are plenty of others during school time...
    But comparing the frequency now with back in Dec/Jan I think it is fairly consistent. I had been wondering if there could be some other explanation - like the failing of the cable which did a few days later become much more suspect.
    Can router hardware generate Deauth because of broken/bad packets on the catV wire? I was not looking at packet stats at that time nor Wireshark traces.
     
  10. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    Is there a good site for checking out details of known hacks by device?

    I was also trying to ask if there were better router suggestions to explore which would offer syslog and admin features and be an improvement over the DIR655 in stability, speed & range. I do see that as possibly preferable to messing with the catV wire at all but have found it hard to zero in on the right sort of device...

    Is the "Wireless Buying Advice", right here on snb the best start point? I'd better look....
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
  11. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    I guess you can google it. There seems to be different hardware versions as well as software versions. I am not sure it matters since the DIR655 is no longer supported by the vender.
     
  12. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    So, I should post about new router options under "Wireless Buying Advice"?
     
  13. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    I don't think you need to start another post?

    I would recommend the RT-AC3100 or the much newer RT-AC86U with RMerlin firmware, of course.

    If you have a burning desire to spend more, the RT-AX88U would be the only other candidate at this time but I can't wholeheartedly recommend one (haven't tested one yet).

    Do you have a budget? Do you have a future goal for your network that might sway this decision, today?

    The RT-AC86U would be the least expensive and the newest router to go with. Some have reported issues, but they seem to have been fixed (either by getting a new unit, or firmware updates). In any case, this, along with the RT-AX88U will have the most support going forward.

    The RT-AC3100 has proven to be an excellent router for me and my customers. See the link in my signature below on one of my first experiences with one. The only (possible) problem today? It is a product from 2015.

    While it is still currently supported, the writing is on the wall. ;)
     
    Clark Griswald likes this.
  14. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    No fixed budget, I just persuade myself a specific purchase is a good idea at some point.
    It would sit in a shed outside the house and I do not envisage needing gaming, printing, ftp/media hosting or high bandwidth. At present we get 100 Mb typically seeing 75Mb at laptop down. Over the years that might go up as ISPs remove their shackles, maybe significantly as we are on fibre. The TV takes video from other fibre channels rather than bandwidth from the internet service, I believe (Virgin v+ box) and I have never been a gamer and our kids are grown up and rarely play games here now, maybe the occasional visitor. So our house network is rarely pressured at all even now.

    I appreciate basic speed and range, likely I imagine I will use 2.4Ghz channels only to reach out the 120feet but configuration and placement might change, reliability, good documentation, flexible features and admin/security so I will insist on having syslog features. Looking at the manual it seems the AC68U standard firmware only offers log viewing via its web portal, no mention of sending to an ip specified by me for my syslog server on port 514 which I like so much with the DIR655. If the AC68U has problems or crashed I would have no info, where with the DIR655 I am all setup to go back 10 days (how many days is down to my server config option, could be 100 days - files compress very well, typically 3k/day) and examine events interleaved with all of my system console logs.
    Guess I should read up what RMerlin offers, like what I see so far though I don't like moving to systems that require jumping up and down versions to get what you need. Pushing the limits always makes that more likely ;-) Did I mention reliability and stability??

    I might, at some time, put the Virgin hub into modem only mode and use the better admin/update/control features of a better router. I ran like that with the older Virgin modem and the DIR 655 until about 5 years ago...
    Other options are for me to put some sort of repeater in the greenhouse, two hops of 60 feet. The D-link COVR might be a god idea but I don't like the mentioned "no catV" backlink options (why??). Maybe they've changed that by now? from snb review 2017:
    The last two pieces of info you should know are Covr can't bypass its router and run as an AP system and it doesn't support Ethernet backhaul between router and extender. D-Link said it plans to support Ethernet backhaul in a future firmware release, but said nothing about AP only support.
     
  15. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    If the radio ranges are similar on 2.4Ghz range I might as well go for older/cheaper device that runs RMerlin?
     
  16. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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  17. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    If you have fiber and CATv where does your internet connection start? Can you push it the other way? Maybe use the coax as ethernet and run from the fiber?

    Maybe setup in your house a router and run ethernet across the coax out to your office.
     
  18. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Try doing a search here, but I'm sure I've read a few times that the RT-AC86U is noticeably faster than the RT-AC3100. Newer drivers, hardware and other invisible firmware enhancements usually do that. :)

    The requirements you have should be covered (I myself do not care about logging historical data), with many additional benefits too.

    I would never advise getting repeaters. They will kill your bandwidth very quickly. You may be surprised what a single RT-AC3100 or RT-AC86U can do. A lot of progress is made with each generation.

    Another possibility for you is the Netgear X4X.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0192911RA/?tag=snbforums-20

    I have never seen one locally, let alone use one, but it is still the #1 ranked router on the SNB charts here. Highest performing router for a long time, but again, support is not NG's strong suit.
     
  19. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    The Merlin supported drives lists RT-AC56U. Amazon has a cheap deal on RT-N56U which seems to be without DSL/modem stuff which I do not envisage ever needing. How can I know if Merlin will run on it OK same as the AC(56U)?
    Looks like that unit might do all I need at a lots less $$/££
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/ASUS-RT-N56U-Dual-Band-Wireless-Repeater/dp/B004TPWRSK/ref=sr_1_13
    I assume all the nbg modes & channels radio stuff is the same? Will the range be better than DIR655?
     
  20. cwinte

    cwinte Occasional Visitor

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    No coax, the fibre runs to optical splitter 1 way to internet box, other way to runs to a v+ box that pulls its own video data streams for 3 or 4 simultaneous viewing/recording HD channels. All close to the side shed I mentioned where I'd site my wifi router (if I give up on catV down the garden path).
    Hope that paints a clear enough picture (I know it so it makes sense to me, but that does not mean it IS clear!)