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Adding a second router to FTTC network

towlerconstruct
Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎23-08-2014

Adding a second router to FTTC network

Hi everyone. I've got quite a messy network setup, and I think I need to make it messier...
My FTTC Openreach modem is downstairs at the front of the house, but in order to get the signal up to the bedrooms, I've had to use a powerline adapter and put the FTTC Technicolor router upstairs.
This works fine, I've taken a little hit to the speed but the coverage more than makes up for it.
What's happening now though is that we really need wifi in the kitchen/dining room area, which isn't covered by the current setup.
I've got a third powerline adapter, and a spare plusnet router (the regular kind, not FTTC).  My question is, how can I link this second router into the system?? I've been trying different things for hours to no avail!!
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks!
11 REPLIES
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Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 3,501
Thanks: 1,953
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Registered: ‎10-04-2007

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

If you're happy using PowerLine adapters you could add something like this  http://www.solwise.co.uk/net-powerline-intro.htm from Solwise.  (Other suppliers also have them)
I've got an old house with thick stone walls and use PowerLine to distribute both Ethernet and WiFi to odd bits of the property.  Been using it reliably for around three years.
Maurice
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 258
Fixes: 21
Registered: ‎16-02-2009

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

I don't think you can do it via powerline adaptors as setup, what you are broadcasting is the RAW feed not the authenticated feed from the router, i.e you would effectively be trying to log on twice to the same incoming signal.
what you have is
BT <---> modem <---> powerline <---> router 1
what you are suggesting is
BT <---> modem <---> powerline <---> router 1
                            a/a                <---> router 2
What you need is
BT <---> modem <---> powerline <---> router 1  --------> wifi extender but not via powerline adaptors without moving the router like so
BT <---> modem <--->  router 1 <---> powerline  <---> router 2
                                                      powerline  <---> wifi extender / switch etc                     
Gets complicated.
Can you run a cable to the kitchen? If so then you can plug the 2nd router in as an extender by plugging into the LAN port and disabling the dhcp/dns on it.
dragon2611
Grafter
Posts: 283
Registered: ‎20-10-2013

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

You need to Move things around so your LAN is going over the powerline adaptors not the WAN, since the traffic over the WAN side of the router will be Encapsulated in PPPOE.
Then if you want to use "Routers" as additional Access points you need to change some settings on them, namely the Lan IP address (So you can still access them to change the settings later) and disable their DHCP servers so you don't have multiple devices handing out IP's
Depending on your setup you may find an 11AC wireless bridge gives you faster throughput than powerline, I've found a pair of WHR-1166D 's work quite well although they only have a single Gigabit port (Yes they are sold as routers, but they have a little switch that puts them into access point mode  Wink )
I have mine setup so they link together on the 5Ghz (11AC) and then serve clients on the 2.4Ghz 11N.
There's nothing stopping me connecting a 5Ghz client (11n or 11AC) to them but it will reduce performance if I happen to end up connecting to the AP that's already connected wirelessly itself, due to the fact the Radio would have to receive the request from the client then re-transmit it to the main AP, and of course a radio can only receive or transmit at any given time.  
towlerconstruct
Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎23-08-2014

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Hmmm thanks for your replies everyone. How about this setup maybe:
FTTC router back downstairs directly connected to the Openreach modem, then an Ethernet running from the router (instead of the modem) into the powerline which would be set to access point mode.  Then connect TWO spare routers to the other powerline adapters that are in end point mode, one upstairs for the bedrooms, and one in the kitchen?  Disable DHCP on these routers and give them static IPs outside of the main router's DHCP range.
Does that make sense? And do you think it'd work? Thanks!!
dragon2611
Grafter
Posts: 283
Registered: ‎20-10-2013

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

The main router would need to be in router mode (The one connected to the openreach modem) as that's the actual bit of kit that's going be routing your traffic out to the internet.
But otherwise you've got it.
towlerconstruct
Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎23-08-2014

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Thanks! I'll give that a go tomorrow. One last question, might be a silly one: the router's DHCP range is 192.168.1.63 to .253, it doesn't have to be above that though does it, I could set these routers to something below it like .40 or .23?
pwatson
Rising Star
Posts: 2,468
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Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎26-11-2012

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Yes, and remember to connect the two AP routers using a LAN port on each - not their WAN port.
Set the SSID & Password  to be the same on all the routers and you'll be able to roam between them.  Experiment with channel settings - Some people advise setting each AP to a different channel but I find that setting them all to the same channel works best for me...
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
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Registered: ‎16-02-2009

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Quote from: towlerconstruct
DHCP range is 192.168.1.63 to .253, it doesn't have to be above that though does it, I could set these routers to something below it like .40 or .23?

.255 is the MAX setting. Set them down below the DHCP range .40&.41 is fine, make sure you can PING them as well to be sure you can connect to them, and set the wifi to the same settings as the main one, same name/password and that should be it.
dragon2611
Grafter
Posts: 283
Registered: ‎20-10-2013

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Quote from: pwatson
Yes, and remember to connect the two AP routers using a LAN port on each - not their WAN port.
Set the SSID & Password  to be the same on all the routers and you'll be able to roam between them.  Experiment with channel settings - Some people advise setting each AP to a different channel but I find that setting them all to the same channel works best for me...

Ahh now that's an interesting one, If you keep them on the same channel ,the client doesn't have to go off channel to find the other AP's so the advantage there is it may roam a bit quicker.
However you then run into the problem of channel re-use which brings down the available bandwidth on the WLAN as the Ap's will be able to "hear" each other.
It will depend on how many devices you have on the Wlan as to which method works best.
I must admit to having been really lazy with my AP's and left them on auto channel select Embarrassed which is probably the worst thing you can do as the auto is usually crap on a lot of consumer AP's
pwatson
Rising Star
Posts: 2,468
Thanks: 8
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎26-11-2012

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

I have two APs - One in the living room and one in my office in the garden.  With them set to different channels my laptop found the first AP with a vaguely usable signal rather than the strongest so I can be sitting right next to the AP in the house and it would still connect to the garden one - Sod's law I suppose!
With them on the same channel this doesn't happen and I get a reliable connection wherever I am.  As I said, experiment and see what works best for your situation  Wink
towlerconstruct
Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎23-08-2014

Re: Adding a second router to FTTC network

Job done! Everything's up and running perfectly, and we're a fully networked home now.
I've set the channels separately for now, but I'll keep experimenting with that to see if there's any noticeable improvement one way or the other.
Thank you for all your help everyone!