Accessing xfinity hotspots

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by kcallis, May 17, 2017.

  1. kcallis

    kcallis Network Guru Member

    My son and I have been doing traveling in our trailer. Because I am a Comcast customer, I am able to access the xfinity hotspots. I have no issues with accessing the hotspot, but my son has issue considering his tablet has a weak WiFi radio.

    I have been trying to use my Netgear Nighthawk X6 to try to setup a client bridge using xfinity as the WAN connection, but I have run into a wall because I need to authenticate. Is there some way to authenticate on the tomato side? Has anyone been able to use the hotspot though tomato?
  2. cloneman

    cloneman Addicted to LI Member

    Wonder if cloning the wifi mac address with a device that's been authenticated already would work...

    I don't know how you're supposed to authenticate or why it wouldn't work... as long as your DNS is set to automatic it should be able to redirect you to the login page right?

    As long as the xfinity sees you as 1 computer (double nat), if you try to bridge it so that it sees multiple devices/mac addresses then maybe it won't allow that. So I would try Wireless Client instead of Wireless ethernet bridge
    kcallis likes this.
  3. Sean B.

    Sean B. LI Guru Member

    I believe xfinity hotspots are unsecured as far as the WiFi connection itself and use a captive portal for authentication ( redirected to login page when you first open a browser, no internet connectivity until logged in ). If so, are you unable to access the login page using one of your devices after your router has connected to the hotspot in client mode? Or is your router failing to complete the WiFi connection to begin with?
    Last edited: May 18, 2017
  4. lancethepants

    lancethepants Network Guru Member

    I did this for a buddy that was within range of xfinity hotspot that did not have internet himself. It's been a while so I don't know remember all the details. I put the router wifi in client mode (I think Wireless Client, and not Wireless Ethernet Bridge) to give internet to lan clients, I believe we had a separate router for local wifi access. Someone on the network then had to login to their captive portal, and once that was done, the entire network had internet access. It took some fiddling with.

    It was better than nothing at least, although even between periodically having to re-authenticate the connection it seemed to drop certain traffic. It seemed anything that was high bandwidth or a single connection that was really long (playing games) would get throttled or dropped at some point, which is frustrating when playing a game.
    kcallis and Sean B. like this.
  5. Sean B.

    Sean B. LI Guru Member

    You remember correctly. Client mode operates the same as gateway except via wireless, with the LAN in a different subnet than that of the hotspot and handling DHCP/nat etc for it's clients so upstream only ever sees the routers mac. Ethernet bridge mode would put the routers LAN side in the same subnet and forward all DHCP requests etc from LAN clients to the hotspot as if they were connected by wire.. of which the hotspot wouldn't appreciate.
    kcallis likes this.
  6. kcallis

    kcallis Network Guru Member

    I just happened to login to look at another posting on another topic, and lo and behold, I see there multiple response to my question! Thanks for the responses! I originally, I had my Nighthawk with a Cable Modem in the WAN and 2.4 and 5GHz (with different SSID) using the same DHCP server. So what do I need to change to setup the client mode. I am assuming that I need to disable the WAN, make the 5GHZ the wireless client and use the 2.4GHZ for my wireless LAN. Or am I still suppose to keep the WAN active. Or is someone will point me to the proper resource I get learn appropriately!

  7. kcallis

    kcallis Network Guru Member

    Ok, I changed my WAN to wireless client using 5GHz. The eth2 5GHz interface was of course switched over to wireless client. Still not able to access through xfinitywifi. I used a spare laptop connected to xfinitywifi, authenticated and then cloned the MAC address on eth2, rebooted the R7000 and still not able to access through xfinitywifi. So what am I missing in the equation?

    I figured when I go the fixed, I could install one of my Ubiquiti Bullets on top of the trailer and see if I could get it to play nicely, but I need to resolve this issue with the R7000 first.
  8. Sean B.

    Sean B. LI Guru Member

    Few questions:

    1: When your connected with your laptop directly to the xfinity wifi and authenticated, assuming it's a windows laptop, open a command prompt and run ipconfig /all and post the output here. Also take note of the default gateway IP for later test.

    2: When you connect your routers 5ghz radio in Client Mode to the xfinity wifi, goto the routers web interface Tools->System Commands and type ifconfig then click execute. Paste the output here.

    3: When the router is connected to the xfinity wifi in client mode, goto the routers web interface Tools->Ping and type in the default gateway IP you noted from question #1 in the address box and click ping. Does it show fail or response?

    4: Have you tried connecting your laptop to the router via ethernet cable when the 5ghz radio is connected to the xfinity hotspot?
  9. kcallis

    kcallis Network Guru Member

    It took me having to reboot computers as well as the router, and also remembering to connect to a non secure web page, but suddenly, I am now connected with xfinitywifi providing my WAN connection! Thanks for the responses and more importantly thanks from the PIA entitled 12 year old that NEEDS to be connected!
    Sean B. likes this.
  10. Matthew Wood

    Matthew Wood New Member Member

    Hi there, I am pursuing this identical problem with a Nighthawk X6 as well. Did you put Tomato on that device? I am currently running DD-WRT, and trying to use Repeater mode on the xfinitywifi network. I am a Comcast user that travels constantly, so this would be grand if it worked. Thank you for any pointers.
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