Setting up an AIMesh node - basic help

spokey

Occasional Visitor
I've had an RT-AC86U for a few years. I'm running almost most current merlin (just saw a new update this morning so I'm one back(386.5_2)).

I have set up a mesh network but thought it would help so I bought another RT-AC86U

First note. I have not tried to update the firmware as it is brand new. I figure it probably does not have the most recent but would be good enough. If I do need to update it first, is there some way to do that without going through router setup just to update the firmware?

I can't do the initial setup. When I first plugged it in, there is a wizard and you can choose AiMesh, so I did that. After a couple clicks it tells me to reconnect to my router. As it doesn't say to do anything else, I went to AiMesh / Add. I get the following message:

Snap1.jpg


I've done this a couple times with the same result.

If I do a factory reset and just try to add it, same result.
 

fisherman

Occasional Visitor
First note. I have not tried to update the firmware as it is brand new. I figure it probably does not have the most recent but would be good enough. If I do need to update it first, is there some way to do that without going through router setup just to update the firmware?
I believe this is your mistake right here. At least, I tried my NIB AC86U router and had a similar problem. Despite being NIB it had ancient firmware and would not do the AIMesh thing.

Here is what I got from Tech9. After updating, mine worked fine:

"If the firmware is very old and you can't add it as AiMesh node, connect the new AC86U WAN port to your existing router LAN port, do minimal configuration as router and update the firmware. Disconnect it, do factory reset and add it to AiMesh from the main router."
 

OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
First note. I have not tried to update the firmware as it is brand new. I figure it probably does not have the most recent but would be good enough. If I do need to update it first, is there some way to do that without going through router setup just to update the firmware?

No. Commission the new AC86U with minimal configuration to be able to upload current stock ASUSWRT firmware, then reset that firmware to its default settings, and search/add it to your ASUSWRT-Merlin AiMesh from within the root node webUI. If wireless backhaul only, confirm WPS is enabled on the root node before adding the reset node. Then you can disable WPS afterward.

See my install notes for more basic clues.

OE
 
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spokey

Occasional Visitor
still getting the same message.

What I did this last time.
1 - Resetup the node and confirmed it was on the latest update.
2 - Factory reset the node (verify by seeing SSID back to OEM)
3 - verify WPS is on
4 - Power off both devices
5 - Power on both devices
6 - try to add mesh node. It starts, gets to 2% then the message.

I don't really understand how this is supposed to connect. Why WPS on? Does that enable something? Am I supposed to push both WPS buttons then try the add?

what about the network? I use a private 172.x.x.x and the default is 192x.x.x.

OE thx for the notes. Alas most was over my head
 

OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
still getting the same message.

What I did this last time.
1 - Resetup the node and confirmed it was on the latest update.
2 - Factory reset the node (verify by seeing SSID back to OEM)
3 - verify WPS is on
4 - Power off both devices
5 - Power on both devices
6 - try to add mesh node. It starts, gets to 2% then the message.

I don't really understand how this is supposed to connect. Why WPS on? Does that enable something? Am I supposed to push both WPS buttons then try the add?

what about the network? I use a private 172.x.x.x and the default is 192x.x.x.

OE thx for the notes. Alas most was over my head

Confirm all router and node WLAN signals (4) are broadcasting and stable... AiMesh requires these until you switch to wired backhaul only. AC86Us have a history of hardware issues including radios and voltage regulation... an unhealthy AC86U may not cooperate. And beware any co-located transmitters that might be upsetting the WPS comms... like cordless peripherals, WiFi Direct APs in wireless printers, etc.

WPS is used by the router to add a wireless node... since WiFi/WLANs are not setup yet on the node. Lately, some/all firmware manages its use of WPS automatically during node setup... but its worth confirming that it is enabled before you try search/add, especially if there is trouble.

You could also try connecting a temporary wired backhaul, router LAN to node WAN.

Is the node on stock or Merlin firmware? There have been reports of some recent Merlin not working well with AiMesh setup.

Valid IPs should work... I typically use 192.168.1.xxx.

When's the last time you reset the router and configured from scratch?

OE
 
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spokey

Occasional Visitor
I had a problem a few months ago not being able to change my password. Did a reset and rebuild the settings from scratch then.

I did get it working but not via wifi. I saw a youtube suggesting connecting via ethernet and then unplugging. That seemed to work although when unplugged it sat and thought about it for a little bit. But the last I looked a couple devices were on the node. I'm going to move it now and see what happens.

I left the node on ASUS firmware and the router is on merlin 386.5_2. That is one back (I think). I'll be updating the merlin when everything settles down.

thanks for the help.
 

OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
I had a problem a few months ago not being able to change my password. Did a reset and rebuild the settings from scratch then.

I did get it working but not via wifi. I saw a youtube suggesting connecting via ethernet and then unplugging. That seemed to work although when unplugged it sat and thought about it for a little bit. But the last I looked a couple devices were on the node. I'm going to move it now and see what happens.

I left the node on ASUS firmware and the router is on merlin 386.5_2. That is one back (I think). I'll be updating the merlin when everything settles down.

thanks for the help.

Given wireless backhaul, find their 2.4/5.0 connection details in the Wireless Log... ac, NSS 3/4, ?/?dBm RSSI, and ?/?Mbps Tx rate. This will help you to know how they are performing and that they are both there like they should be.

OE
 

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