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Cable modem / Router problem - strangest problem...

Posted on 2002-06-03
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Last Modified: 2013-12-14
I have a cable modem from Roadrunner in NYC, and a Belkin Wireless Gateway/Router.  I've set up everything so that the router will use DHCP to give the computer IP address and access the internet, I've cloned the MAC address of the NIC so that the ISP is fine, and I've swapped from Dynamic to Static IP addressing.  The thing is, whatever i do, it works for only a day and then doesn't work.  I started off just connecting the router -the one wired computer and the 2 wireless computers all could go online fine.  A day passes, and it doesn't work anymore.  I thought it was the MAC address.  I clone it.  One day later, it dies again.  I change from Dynamic Addressing to Static, one day later it dies again.  What am i missing?  I've been online for the past 5 hours from my job to search out any kind of answer i could find, but no luck.  What can i do?!?
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Question by:loserofthemonth
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ITsheresomewhere earned 500 total points
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First of all congratulations on having gotten it setup correctly the first time and getting through all the things that most others never get.

From the sound of what your saying I get the impression that your IP address is not renewing properly.  Dynamic IP addresses are generally set to be "leased" for a period of time and if the primary computer connected stays on all during that time there is a point where the "lease" expires and must be renewed.  Sometimes, if the IP address in use is not needed it is just left in place and the lease term times are updated.  However, if the provider, for what ever reason, wants to channel you through another port, it gives out the new IP, the DHCP picks it up and but for a momentary pause you never know it.  Of course when you turn all the computers off and "shutdown" the connection, this same renewal process takes place without you even knowing it.

In some routers there are settings in the DHCP area which  anticipate this renewal and cause the router to do the communication necessary to request and reserve its renewal.  Also there can be a setting in there where it enables a "persistent" connection regarding the lease, and the ISP really doesn't like this so it has its equipment set to counter act this by just killing the IP address, thus your not working. And you reset things which actually causes a new lease and new lease period.

I would suggest you look again in the instructions for the router for something along these lines.

One way to test this would be to go into the router control area and see if there is a release/renew IP address setting, much like there is when you run winipcfg.
The next time your dead, go into this area, and release and renew.  If your then all the sudden up, well that is what needs to be overcome.

Likewise you want to check the Lan side and see if the DHCP server is renewing your leases to the member computers.  Outside in could be working but inside out could be struggling.

If none of that fixes anything then I would say that there is some "heart beat" communication between the ISP's equipment and your expected equipment (i.e. computer, cause they don't really expect you to have a router) that may be being blocked or not responded to by the router and that cause the line to die.  I have seen it in a couple setups and an adjustment to the firewall was needed.

Hope that helps.

Oh by the way, what model of router, maybe I have something on it here in my stack of to be read.

ITsy

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by:ITsheresomewhere
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Oh and heaven forbid but it just could be a faulty modem.  Did I mention that? :-)
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by:t1n0m3n
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Do you have (or ever had) zonealarm installed.
This may keep your machine from renewing properly.

I say "or ever had" because if you uninstall zonealarm it still does not remove the service (and you cant even see it running in services either) see: http://www.zonelabs.com/services/support_install_2000.htm
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by:loserofthemonth
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i definitely don't have any sort of firewall or zonealarm installed, so that isn't it <thank godness>.  I'm gonna check this weekend for that renew thing in the DHCP, so hopefully that fixes it.  The one thing i don't understand though is why it works continuously if a system is hooked to it.  Hopefully there is a setting for that renewal thing for the router, otherwise i'm lost on what to do.  A side thought though.  If that renewing thing is the trick, wouldn't that mean i could put the settings to Dynamic IP and then if this happened just reset the router, and all would work again?  at least as a temporary fix until something makes it work?

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by:t1n0m3n
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OK when it is not working, can you ping your default gateway?  (The inside interface of the router)
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by:t1n0m3n
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Does the router have any firewall settings?
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by:t1n0m3n
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Are you using firmware 1.20.00?
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by:t1n0m3n
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The belkin webpage says this :
Solves speed and disconnection issues.

http://web.belkin.com/support/download/downloaddetails.asp?download=663&lang=1
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by:ITsheresomewhere
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Ok as of now I am lost as to what is actually happening.

I felt that the topic was the wireless router and references to "it" meant the router.

But when you say "it" dies, what is dying?

And when "it" is dead what are you doing to resurrect "it".

Are you simply rebooting the router?  Are you rebooting a attached computer? What is happening?

The other confusion is

>>>The one thing i don't understand though is why "it" works continuously if a system is hooked to it.

Rather then my guessing could you please clarify your question, sorry if I'm not tracking.

As to your concern as to what to do, one question I failed to ask was whether you had contacted your ISP support or Belkin for any advice, if not just a direct solution.  The ISP would be most familiar with how their line feed acts.  Belkin would be familiar with both your internal settings and noted problem points, i.e. certain cable systems, you specific model having problems.

Not to send you elsewhere only that they are resources and often very helpful if worked with a bit.  May have to encourage the front line tech to stretch a bit or get higher level help, but still they are resources for solutions.

The info that t1 posted is important because it may in fact be directly related and is always good practice to have the most up to date software/firmware.  Just cause its new doesn't guarantee it hasn't been in the box awhile.

Hopefully we can clear this up over the next couple days.

ITsy
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by:t1n0m3n
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There are 2 dhcp functions on your router.  DHCPClient is the router getting an address from the ISP.  DHCPServer is GIVING addresses to your home computer network.  I would like to know if when your disconnect happens, if you can still ping your router's inside interface, then everything is cool with the wiring/wireless network.  This is where an integrated firewall (on the router) would come into play.

If you cannot ping your router's inside interface, then the problem is with the router's DHCPServer or the wiring/wireless, or the computers themselves.
As for your belkin device...is this it?
http://catalog.belkin.com/IWCatProductPage.process?Merchant_Id=1&Section_Id=&pcount=&Product_Id=122706

Firmware and instructions
http://networking.belkin.com/update/index.html

The link I provided before was for the non-wireless cable router.  Don't use it.
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by:loserofthemonth
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In the end, this solved my problems because after LONG hours of on-off switching off and on of the router and the cable modem so that my connection would renew, i ended up finding the configuration problem in the router.  Thanks guys, you helped a LOT.  
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by:ITsheresomewhere
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Hey thats great!  Now enjoy that bandwidth and the mobility to the max !

Just one last inquire - If someone else were to set up computers similar to what you did what would you suggest that they particularly look for or do for a smooth install?  Always like the impression of the one that has been there.

Glad to have been of help
ITsy
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