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Bridging from WRT54G to Apple Airport Extreme

Discussion in 'Cisco/Linksys Wireless Routers' started by beeblebrox, Jul 23, 2004.

  1. beeblebrox

    beeblebrox Network Guru Member

    Does anyone have a simple guide for using the Linksys as a gateway and the Apple Airport Extreme as a WDS remote base station? I've tried using the settings recommended by Ars Technica for the Airport Express, but still can't get it to work. Any assistance would be great.

  2. beeblebrox

    beeblebrox Network Guru Member

    I've been struggling over the last few days to get my Linksys WRT54G router to act as a main base station for my AEBS in remote Base Station / WDS extender.

    After reading a the steps required for the Airport Express, I was sure that it could be done, I just couldn't get it to work for a while. I figured I should document the steps in case anyone else is having the same problem.

    Because of the placement of the water heater and furnace in my house, coverage in my living room is very poor. What's the point of wireless if you can't use it on the couch?

    The WRT54G has 6dB antennae which help some, but signal strength is still poor. Boosting transmit power to the max (84mw) didn't help any. I tried using the AEBS with a high-gain antenna and had similar results.

    I use the WRT54G as a router since it has (in my opinion) better features for port forwarding, DHCP, etc.

    In order to make sure that it was actually working, I turned off the AirPort in my PB and connected to the LAN port on the AEBS with some Cat5. I accessed the Linksys from a 2nd computer that was connected to it with Cat5.

    Step 1: Get and install the Sveasoft 4.0 firmware for the WRT54G. http://www.linksysinfo.org/modules.php?name=Downloads&d_op=viewdownload&cid=8

    Step 2: Reset the AEBS to default by holding the reset button for 15 seconds.

    Step 3: Configure the WRT54G for WDS. I'm only going to point out the stuff that I feel should be set for certain. Look at the following settings:
    - Wireless -> Basic Settings
    - Wireless Mode: AP
    - Wireless Network Mode: Mixed (or whatever is
    - Wireless Network Name (SSID): [Whatever you want]
    - Wireless Channel: [Anything from 1-11]
    - Wireless SSID Broadcast: Enable

    - Wireless -> Security
    - Security Mode: Disable

    - Wireless -> MAC Filter
    - Wireless MAC Filter: Disable

    - Wireless -> WDS
    - There's no label, but set a pulldown to "LAN".
    - In the boxes to the right, enter the AEBS "Airport ID".
    It should start with 00:0A:
    - Lazy WDS: Disable
    - WDS Subnet: Disable

    - Security -> Firewall
    - Firewall Protection: Disable
    - Uncheck "Block Anonymous Internet Requests"

    - Administration -> Management
    - Loopback: Disable

    - Status -> Wireless
    - Write down the MAC Address.

    Step 4: Configure the AEBS
    - Choose "Internet Connection" from the buttons on the left
    - Connect via: AirPort (WDS)
    - Primary MAN Address: Put the MAC address from the
    - Choose "Show All Settings" from the buttons on the left
    - Channel: [Whatever you put as the Linksys channel]
    - Hit Update.

    Step 5: Check the WDS
    - On the Linksys:
    - Status -> Wireless
    You should see lines that looks similar to:
    "Rate: 54 mbps" (11 mbps if you have a .11b device active)
    "WDS Signal: 00:0A:95:F4:56:EE rssi -35"
    This means that the routers "see" each other and are talking at 54 mbps.
    If the WDS is not working, the rate will read "1 mbps".
    - On the AEBS:
    - "Show Summary" from the buttons on the left
    The "Public (WAN) IP Address" should be in the range
    assigned by your Linksys
    - On the PowerBook:
    - You should be able to access the net. Load
    http://www.apple.com/ in Safari.

    Step 6: Secure the network
    I did this a little different that other instructions I've seen. You can also generate the WEP key on the linksys and enter the 26 digit code on the AEBS. You just have to prefix it with a "$". (You can verify that you entered it correctly with the "Password" button.)
    - On the AEBS:
    - "Name and Password" from the buttons on the left
    - Hit "Change Wireless Security"
    - Wireless Security: 128 bit WEP
    - Enter a network password, hit OK
    - Hit the "Password" button at the top of the window,
    write it down
    - "Show All Settings" from the buttons on the left
    - Click "Base Station Options"
    - Uncheck all options under "WAN Port Settings"
    - Hit "Update"

    - On the WRT54G:
    - Wireless -> Security
    Security Mode: WEP
    Default Transmit Key: 1
    WEP Encryption: 128 bits 26 hex digits
    Key 1: [The WEP key from the AEBS]
    "Save Settings"

    You may have to restart the AEBS for it to join the WDS network again.
  3. macconvert

    macconvert Network Guru Member

    Bridge Linksys and APEB

    I sort of think it is working. Is it correct to see both routers when I do a scan? The Airport is stronger when I am closer to it
  4. chriswn

    chriswn Guest

    Well I was ecstatic coming across this thread after scouring the internet for several hours & working for a whole weekend trying to get my Linksys WRT54G & my Airport Express station to talk to each other. Unfortunately either the instructions (from step 4 on) are either not detailed enough, or they are for an earlier version of the Airport Admin Utility. There are many more settings in the utility which seem like they should be changed, however they're not mentioned...

    This has been really frustrating & spending a day reading up on networking hasn't really helped. My set up: Cube w/ WRT54G connected via ethernet & AEx station connected to G3 PB via ethernet/airport (wasn't able to configure the express w/ my powerbook, because it was only running 10.2, so i disconnected the router & connected it directly to the cube to change its settings & then reconnected the cube. My Powerbook saw both via airport as separate, until I changed the names to the same & once I did that, just the network name has been available)

    I have my Linksys conncected to a cube & seem to be able to configure it (up through step 3, though there are many settings under the "management" tab i'm a bit unsure of). However configuring the AEx just doesn't seem to work. The instructions drop off....I don't see any "show all" button, though I did go back to the first tab & set the SSID broadcast name & channel to that of the router. However AEx LED still flashes yellow & when I go to "status" in the router settings there's only a connect/disconnect PPOe button. when I try to save settings, I also get a prompt to change the network settings so that IP addresses aren't automatically assigned.

    So, If anyone that has gotten these 2 to work together under OS 10.3.5 & could explain in more detail how to make it work, I would appreciate it.

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