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Linksys WRT54G wireless-G router will not connect with Linksys WAP54G wireless-G access point

Posted on 2006-05-01
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Last Modified: 2011-08-18
As mentioned in the title, the router and access point will not connect. They did previously - I don't know what happened. Here are the basics: I have several wired routers on the network, one of which is the gateway at 192.168.15.1. I have assigned 192.168.15.120 to the WRT54G and 192.168.15.130 to the WAP54G. The WRT54G is configured as a router, not a gateway, and DHCP is off. The SSIDs and WEP keys match, and both are on channel 6. Everything is configured for shared key, no additional security features (MAC filter, etc., have been enabled).

Here is something that I think must be a clue, though Linksys support apparently was unimpressed - they seem to be rather hopeless, in fact (I sent them screen captures of all settings on both units, and they still are struggling to find a clue). I can ping both the router and the access point with my laptop when only the router OR the access point is powered on. When both are powered on, I can only ping the unit that was powered on first. For example, if I connect the WRT54G, then the WAP54G, I can ping only the WRT54G. If I then disconnect the WRT54G, I can ping the WAP54G. If I then reconnect the WRT54G, I cannot ping it, but I can still ping the WAP54G.

Maybe this is another clue. I also have a Linksys media adapter. Previously it worked okay. Now it will pick up a signal from the WRT54G and it will connect, but no pictures or songs are available. No settings were changed on the media adapter.

Linksys support has been working (or not) on this issue for weeks, so I am giving it the highest difficulty rating.

Thanks!
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Question by:durf786
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by:ZabagaR
ZabagaR earned 80 total points
ID: 16588854
You've probably seen this, but I have to send the link to be sure anyway:

http://linksys.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/linksys.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=231

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by:durf786
ID: 16589122

That was almost helpful, but I'm trying to use the WAP54G as an access point, not as a repeater. I do have the latest firmware for both the router and the access point.

Thanks!
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by:Craig_200X
ID: 16590916
I wonder if its actually hardware failure.. have you tried with another (new) one?

I have seen odd things happen with low end routers., wouldnt be surprised if this was another.

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by:durf786
ID: 16591112

I wondered the same thing. So I bought a new WAP54G. Nope. At least I can use one as a repeater, when I get things going. After a while I bought another WRT54G. Nope. Now I have 5 Linksys routers, 2 Linksys switches, 1 Linksys access point, and 1 Linksys media adapter. They own me.
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by:bstrauss3
ID: 16634219
It sounds like a messed up route table internal to the unit.  I'm not sure why it would happen, however...
-----Burton
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by:brady1408
ID: 16639934
you do understand that an access point is the same as what your wrt54g is? if you set the both to an access point they will conflict I'm assuming that you are actually trying to us your wap54 as a client or a bridge I would assume client actually with how you have it set up. if you want the wrt54g to act as the wireless router/access point and you want to receive that network with the wap54g then you will need to configure it with all the information and as a client.
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by:bstrauss3
bstrauss3 earned 120 total points
ID: 16640045
Actually, an AP is a bridge/router between the wired and wireless ethernet.  That's really ALL it does.  There's no magic to being wireless beyond the radio stuff itself.

Depending on placement, you may want them on DIFFERENT channels.  Say 1 and 11. That way the various devices will access whichever gives them the better signal.  Then their traffic gets bridged to the wired network and thence to the (wired) gateway.

-----Burton
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by:bstrauss3
ID: 16640051
(them = the two 802.11g devices).
-----Burton
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by:brady1408
ID: 16640099
I think where he is getting confused though is that the AP can be set to ether transmit your network to a wireless network or it can be set to recieve a wireless network for the people on a wired network it's all in the settings and for linksys there are 3 AP Client and Bridge I think he's using the AP setting which is what the wrt54g is instead of the client setting that I'm sure is what he's actually trying to be.
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by:bstrauss3
ID: 16641454
That's why I called it a Bridge/Router - it's not a pure bridge.  

A bridge forwards all packets received on an interface to all other interfaces, like a hub.  Unlike a hub, a bridge can perform (limited) protocol conversion or even some filtering.

Similarly a router takes each packet and makes an intelligent decision (layer 2 = switch, layer 3 = router) about which interface(s) to forward the packet.

A bridge/router or brouter is a hybrid device... http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/B/brouter.html:

 brouter

(n.) Short for bridge router and pronounced BROW-ter, a device that functions as both a router and a bridge. A brouter understands how to route specific types of packets, such as TCP/IP packets. Any other packets it receives are simply forwarded to other network(s) connected to the device (this is the bridge function).


Anyway, back to the OP's question...

Unless you've changed the default address of one of the devices, they are all probably set to the default Linksys address of 192.168.1.1.  What that means is that whichever one actually responds to a ping is basically random - (it's not truly random, it has to do with logical distance, network topology, sequencing etc. - but it's close).  Even if you are refering to them by names, thatwill be being translated to the numeric ip address and you'll see the problem.

-----Burton




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by:bstrauss3
ID: 16641468
You don't want to put them on different subnets (you would need a router then), but you do want to give them each unique IP addresses.  And make sure only ONE device is responding to DHCP requests...

-----Burton
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by:durf786
ID: 16650011
More details: I am using the WAP54G as an access point only - that is, to connect devices to my wired network. The WRT54G is on my wired network for the sole purpose of connecting to the WAP54G. The WRT is configured as a router, not a gateway. DHCP is turned off. The WAP is configured as an access point only. Both devices have assigned IP addresses. I am using shared key 128-bit WEP security.

I guess this is a complicated problem, since neither Linksys nor EE has been able to figure it out. But it seems that it *should* be simple.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16650048
yes I understand but think of it this way right now you have two AP's on the network you need on AP which will be the wrt54g and one client the wap54g then the wap will connect to the wrt
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by:brady1408
ID: 16650058
there should be a setting on the wap to tell it to be a client I'll go look up the docs now and let you know which one it is.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16650749
This is page 19 of the manual it looks like you are going to have to set it as a bridge and give it the mac address of your wrt54g router you will have to keep all ssid and wep settings and channel the same as the wrt54g's then set it to a router, in my experiance with linksys access points you need to configure it porperly then power it down and after a couple seconds back up.

• Access Point - The operational mode is set to Access Point by default. This
connects your wireless PCs to a wired network. In most cases, no change is
necessary.
• Wireless Bridge - If you are trying to make a wireless connection between
two or more wired networks, as shown in Figure 6-7, select Wireless
Bridge. This mode connects two physically separated wired networks with
two access points.
To configure a Wireless Bridge environment, click Wireless Bridge and
enter the LAN MAC address of the remote access point in the Remote
Wireless Bridge’s LAN MAC Addresses field. The remote access point also
needs to be set up as a Wireless Bridge.
Note: All devices on each wired network must be connected through a hub
or switch.
Click the Apply button to apply your changes or Cancel to cancel your
changes. If you require online help, click the Help button.
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by:durf786
ID: 16650759
Okay, I switched the WAP from "Access Point" to "AP Client". I did a site survey and it appeared to find the WRT, though the final byte of the MAC address is B6 from the survey and B5 on the WRT. I tried both, but still can't get to the WAP from my LAN.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16650803
okay maybe we should back up here here is how I think this is working and you will have to tell me if I'm wrong. you have a network connected to a wrt54g router then you have another network connectedto the wap54g and you want to connect both networks together. Is this correct? you have assigned ipaddresses to both the wap and the wrt and you have then connected but you aren't able to see the wap from either network?
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by:durf786
ID: 16651052
At the moment the WAP is connected to my laptop (for easy configuration). The WRT is connected to the wired LAN. I want to be able to see the laptop on the LAN. (Normally I just plug the laptop into the LAN, and the WAP is intended to be used, eventually, to connect a network hard drive, etc.)
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651090
perfect this will work next question is do you have a dhcp on the wired? and if so is it running on the same subnet as the wap?
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by:durf786
ID: 16651330
Yes, and yes.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651468
so your laptop gets an address and see's the wrt but not the wap?
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by:durf786
ID: 16651570
The laptop is connected to the WAP only. The address of the WAP is 192.168.15.130.

The WRT is connected to the wired LAN. Its address is 192.168.15.120. The gateway/DHCP server on the LAN is 192.168.15.1.

I'd like to see the laptop from the LAN, but can't.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651609
the wap's address really doesn't matter here as it will only function to connect to the wap configuration screen, the laptop I'm assuming is going to get a address via the dhcp server, has the laptop been able to recieve an address yet from the dhcp or is it using a random 169.x.x.x address?
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651624
if the laptop is configured for dhcp and has not received an address then we still aren't getting a connection between the wap and the wrt and need to fix this first.
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by:durf786
ID: 16651647
Yes, that is the issue. I'm not worried about the WAN, I just want to connect the laptop to the LAN.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651701
I connected a wap11 the other day to a openbsd router and it worked very well here are the steps I took in order to accomplish this.
your wrt is an AP if you hear me talk about AP I'm referting to your wrt
set the ssid on the wap to the ssid on the AP (This can be case sensitive)
Select the same channel on the wap as on the AP
Select client as the mode you want your wap to be in

I didn't use a wep so I don't know about this it should work you should just have to set the wep the same on the wap as on the AP

now that every thing is set and applied unplug the wap for a few moments and then plug it back in after you give it time to connect to the AP try to repair your laptops wired connection. at this point your laptop should receive an IP address from the DHCP.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651759
one last thing when you set it up as a access point client you will need to enter the wrt's MAC address into the field you can find this address usually by looking on the bottom of your wrt54g how ever sometimes that's only the WAN's Mac address you might have to go into the web configuration utility to find out what the wireless MAC address is.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16651812
Oh nice if you don't know the MAC you can use the site survey button next to the Access point client field to find it...
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by:durf786
ID: 16652196
Regarding terminology, I'm not a network maven so I'll stick with Linksys's description of the WRT54G as a "wireless-g broadband router" and the WAP54G as a "wireless-g access point". You can call them whatever you like, and I'll keep that in mind.

The WRT has two possible modes: gateway and router. It is configured as a router. Both units have the same ssid, wep key, and are on the same channel. Earlier in this discussion (10:26) I configured the WAP as an "AP Client". The only interesting thing that happened was that the site survey did find the MAC address of the WRT, except that the last byte was 56; according to the WRT's interface, the last byte is 55; the sticker on the bottom of the unit says 54. Whatever, I tried all 3, and no connection yet.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16652563
okay but keep in mind that the wrt54g has 3 mac addresses one for the WAN one for the LAN and one for tha WIFI so go with the 56 that's going to be the one you want. now just out of curiosity can you connect directly to the wrr54g's wireless network and get an address? I usually have a problem with linksys when I try to use the router instead of the gateway setting.
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by:durf786
ID: 16653007
I'm not sure what you wanted me to try. Using the wireless capability of my laptop, I can get on my LAN. At the moment, I can't ping the WAP. A few days ago I could ping both, which I thought was interesting (2nd paragraph of my question).
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brady1408 earned 800 total points
ID: 16653049
well I'm not sure what to try now this should work the way you have it. there is another option although it's not the easiest one, you have a wrt54g if it's version 4 or less you can put an OS on it called DD-WRT and have that work as the AP Client, the trouble with the wap54g is that they say the will only connect with other wap54g's something I've always found a little frusterating, where DD-WRT will act as a AP Client for any type of wireless router. However I think you are on the right track here and this should work.
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by:durf786
ID: 16653184
Yes, I think it should work, especially since the WAP finds the WRT when it does a site search. I have the firewalls, etc., turned off. Anyway, thanks for the effort! I'll send the bulk of the points your way. If I ever figure this thing out, I'll let you know what it was.
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by:brady1408
ID: 16658700
sorry I couldn't be more help I hope you find the answer to this problem!
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by:durf786
ID: 16678357
Wrap up: I caved in like a Sago mineshaft and got rid of the routers. Now I'm using 2 WAP54Gs configured as wireless bridges and it's working fine. WPA wouldn't work, for some reason, but WEP does - it probably doesn't matter much in this configuration. Later I'll connect one of the routers so I can connect wirelessly with my laptop. I don't know what I'll do with the other router - there's always eBay. My wireless media adapter is also working, but not wirelessly - I ran a cable from the switch connected to the remote access point.

It's annoying that a lot of Linksys stuff will only talk to other Linksys stuff - aren't there standards? It's also annoying that Linksys doesn't make it clear that it isn't easy to get a WRT54G to talk to a WAP54G - their tech support told me it isn't possible, contrary to the documentation; and I had that configuration working for a long time before I somehow messed it up.

I'll give kudos to Linksys tech support for a prompt response to an initial email - after that they kind of disappear. I'll have to take a few points away from tech support because they are totally and absolutely clueless, probably copying and pasting in Bangalore. They repeated a lot of useless information and never, I think, understood what I was trying to do, in spite of diagrams, screen captures, and numerous explanations.

Thanks for the help, brady1408.

ciao for niao
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by:brady1408
ID: 16679893
if your wrt54g is version four or earlier you might want to consider having fun replacing the firmware with something like open wrt or dd-wrt after that it will work as an access point just like the wap54g does, otherwise once again if it's version 4 or earlier you can sell it on ebay there is a healthy market for those routers as linksys disconntinued using the linux firmware on it's routers as of version 5 and people still love to be able to hack them. I own one and run OpenWRT and LOVE it's functionality.
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by:durf786
ID: 16683634
I think I'll give that a try - it sounds like fun!

Thanks!
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