Using a router as a switch

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by Manganus, Jul 15, 2013.

  1. Manganus

    Manganus Reformed Router Member

    I was looking for a switch (as for instance RB250GS or GS108T) when I found an inexpensive router that could utilize open source firmware (WNR3500L v2). The price tag was enticing.

    It did, however, require a fair amount of head-scratching to get the setup right. I started by connecting the old router/gateway with a LAN-connector in my new switch-to-be. That way, I got a network working, but Ping, Traceback, Date and Time didn't work, and revealed that I had to improve the setup.

    Now, in the rear mirror, it's obvious that if only I'd tested to chose the alternative "disable WAN", I would probably have got a nice setup much earlier, but it was first after a couple of days that I got that bright idea.

    Instead I tried to find more direct methods to get dnsmasq and the ntp client to work. That was the wrong way.

    I also used Google to search the Internet, but didn't really get the straight forward answers I was looking for. Actually, two of the forum posts that I found (this and this) were pretty much spot on, but in the flood of other skimmed posts, I didn't understand that.

    In fact, I now realize that it doesn't require more than a handful of changes of the default setup (Shibby's mod), to get a well working setup, of which four on the Basic-->Network setup page are the crucial ones:
    1. "Disable" WAN
    2. IP Adress of the switch
    3. Default gateway (to the Internet)
    4. One static adress to a DNS (for instance the same as the default gateway)
    I wonder if others have had a similar problem to understand how to turn a tomato-router into a switch, and if something could be done to make it easier for us?

    Maybe a notice, or something, at Advanced-->Routing-->Michellaneous-->Mode ???

    My first impression of Tomato (in Shibby's mod) is quite positive. But I'm not very experienced, and have not much to compare with, so I'm not really the right person to make judgements. Instead I thank - and bow in awe!
  2. Victek

    Victek Network Guru Member

    All that you need is:

    Set default values erasing any custom changes done.
    Disable DHCP for LAN.
    And connect all ethernet cable in the 4 LAN ethernet sockets.

    You have an expensive switch then.
  3. rs232

    rs232 Network Guru Member

    AFAIK the WNR3500L has a WAN port that goes to maximum 100Mbit FD, where the LAN ports can deliver 1Gb. keep that in mind when using this unit as a switch!
  4. Manganus

    Manganus Reformed Router Member

    Where I live, a WNR3500L v2 costs no more than a RB250GS, ...and only two thirds of what a RB250GS v2 costs, delivery included.

    Now, to be honest, I've already a long time waited for the moment when I had a good excuse to buy some router on which I could test the Tomato firmware. Last week I got that opportunity.


    At the moment, I'm perfectly cool with that, since some connected devices have 100MB ethernet ports.

    That was my initial idea too. But for some reason it didn't work out as nicely as I'd hoped.
  5. zorkmta

    zorkmta Network Guru Member

    I use a wrt54g like a switch, only disabled firewall, mane switch have ip 192.168.1.x and gate port to and disable dhcp plus asign WAN to LAN port, then i can connect 4 pc in there.
  6. Monk E. Boy

    Monk E. Boy Network Guru Member

    You probably should disable wireless too if you're turning it into switch. No sense polluting the 2.4Ghz range unless you have a reason to.
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