Cascading Linksys routers on a single network

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by jjmack, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. jjmack

    jjmack Network Guru Member

    When you are building a wireless network that spans several buildings or a large area, a single wireless router may not be sufficient. In fact, if your wireless network even spans multiple floors of a building or house, you might have black spots or weak signals in remote corners. When this is the case it's simple to add a second wireless router into the local intranet so that these remote areas are tied into the network.

    The Linksys wireless routers (WRT54G for example) are excellent for doing this and are very easy to configure. I am going to discuss a private intranet that connects to the Internet through one router and has a second router that services a second building. The 2 buildings have a continuous Intranet connection via a 400 foot Cat-5 cable. I will refer to the 2 routers in this setup as “DADDY”, which conncts to the Internet via a cable modem and “JUNIOR”, which is the router that sits behind DADDY. DADDY is also the DHCP server for the network.

    The network has an address space of – with a subnet mask of The addresses from – 9 are reserved for network routers, and the address space from – 99 are reserved for servers and network devices that require static IP addresses. Also reserved is the space of – 254 for routers that could connect to different Internet gateways (for future expansion and planning). The remaining space, – 239 is used for DHCP addresses that will be served from DADDY.

    Router 1: Configuring DADDY

    The factory defaults on the Linksys WRT54G and similar models give the unit an IP address of and has DHCP enabled. They can be plugged into an Internet connection without making any configuration changes. The only 2 things that were change on this router were its IP address and the password. DHCP is still enabled on it and its operating mode is still set to Gateway.
    Connect this router to your Internet connection using its WAN port.

    Router 2: Configuring JUNIOR

    Connect a computer to LAN Port 4 on the back of router JUNIOR and power up the router. Make sure your computer’s TCP/IP settings are set to getting an IP address automatically (using DHCP). You will want to make sure that you are getting an IP address assigned from the router, so go to a DOS command prompt and type the following:
    IPCONFIG /release
    When you get a command prompt back then type:
    IPCONFIG /renew

    If JUNIOR is functioning properly then you should get an IP address from it, it’s subnet mask and its own address. Leave the DOS command window open because we will be coming back to it in a minute.

    Using the PC connected to JUNIOR, start Internet Explorer or any other browser and enter the router’s IP address into the address bar. The default password for the router is ‘admin’ (all small letters) and the username is blank You will have the configuration pages for router JUNIOR at this point. In the ‘Router Name’ and 'Router Host Name’ fields, enter ‘JUNIOR' or any other name you want to associate to it.

    In the ‘Network Setup’ section, enter the ‘IP address’ for JUNIOR of and assign it a subnet mask of Under Network Address Server Settings, disable DHCP and then click the ‘Save Settings’ botton at the bottom of the screen.

    Use LAN Port 1 on Junior and LAN Port 1 on DADDY to connect the 2 routers together. (The WAN port on JUNIOR is not used at all in this configuration) Now go back to the command prompt window so that you can get a new IP address for the PC that will be assigned from DADDY, which should be the only functioning DHCP server on the network now. At this point any wireless or wired connection to JUNIOR will get an IP address assigned from DADDY (provided the client device has DHCP enabled) and will be accessible from any client device that is attached to DADDY or JUNIOR. You will also be able to connect to the Internet from a client device on JUNIOR.

    One other thing to change but is beyond the scope of this document is the channel that the 2 routers work on for wireless connections. By default, linksys routers are set to channel 6. You should change the channel and wireless network name to channel 1 on JUNIOR and assign it a new wireless network name as well.

    Contributed by Kevin Francis Flanagan, copywrite, 2005. Please feel free to distribute these instructions but please keep this copywrite notice with them.
  2. elgato

    elgato Network Guru Member

    Thx for these explainations. But I don't understand your last point: do you mean that Junior should be set on channel 1 when Daddy is set on 6 ? Or do I need to change the channel on both routers ?
    If the second solution is right, why don't we keep the channel 6... (in France/europe I think the default channel is 11)
  3. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    It's not a steadfast requirement that "any" router be set to "any" channel; for the sake of keeping things simple, jjmack was mentioning "factory default settings" (for Linksys Rtrs it's normally 6 as stated above). Wireless channels can cross each other as easily as any other signal which is why it's suggested you put the two routers on different channels.

    The excellent above information is demonstrating how to use a wireless router as a repeater; in actuality, a router "is" nothing more than an access point that's capable of routing traffic...

  4. Philou

    Philou Guest


    I have two WRT54G and would like to use a wireless connection between the two routers (not CAT5). The distance between the two routers is OK for this and I need to connet devices directly to the ports of the second router (not wifi devices) to give them access to internet (the first router is connected to an ADSL modem).

    Is it feasible? Could you tell me how to configure the two routers?


    Phil Cornette

  5. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

  6. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    the info is great, just a suggestion it would be easier to use screen shots, along with the text.
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