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Setup Two Routers at Home

Posted on 2010-01-05
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Hello,

I want to setup two Linksys routers here at home. One router covers my upstairs area (router number 1) and it broadcasts a wireless signal. I want to add a second router so that it covers my downstairs area, and I also want to use its wireless capability. I don't want to use a wireless signal repeater because I need the speed for my Blue Ray disk player's web access. Router number 1 connects to my cable modem.

I want to run a cable from Router number 1 to Router number 2. What I am unsure of is how do setup my IP settings for router number two. Router number 1 connects to the cable modem so it gets an IP address dynamically assigned to it. Then, for the internal connections Router number 1 is also the DHCP server for its wireless and LAN connections.

Does router number 3 need to have a static IP address? Do I still make router number 1 the gateway?

Please help me figure out what is the best and easiest thing to do. I have never connected two routers together like this before where both were going to broadcast the wireless signal, too.

Thanks,
John
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Question by:jhieb
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JDLoaner earned 2000 total points
ID: 26185348
Two "routers" is not needed here, if both of them can handle wireless, take router #2 and put it in "Bridge Mode" this will allow it to basically repeat all the settings and config for R1.  It turns it into a mindless-zombie.
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by:JDLoaner
ID: 26185363
I guess I am obligated to say, it also depends on what type of Wireless Routers you have...
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by:jhieb
ID: 26185404
My goal is to also connect these two routers together via a network cable. I need to do that because I need the speed for my blue ray player. Both of my routers are Linksys. One is a WRT54GS and the other is a WRVS4400N business class.

A friend of mine also wants to do something similar to what I am doing but I am unsure his router models; however, one might be a DLINK and the other might be a Linksys. I am planning on that they cannot be bridged so my question is to also cover my own network and his.
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by:JDLoaner
JDLoaner earned 2000 total points
ID: 26185513
Yes, connecting them via the cable is what will allow the bridging to work.  Let one router be the brain, R1, turn the wireless on with the exact same settings in both and then put R2 in bridge mode.
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by:JDLoaner
JDLoaner earned 2000 total points
ID: 26185547
The other option, if you want two completely separate wireless networks without the ability to walk up and downstairs without having to manually change it, is that you plug the "WAN" port of R2 into one of R1's ports, let it take a 192.168.1.x IP address, and then just make sure R2 is handing out addresses in a different network e.g. 192.168.5.x.. the 3rd octect is what you need to be changing in these type of routers.
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by:jhieb
ID: 26185614
OK, I think I get it. Setting up a bridge is the way to go. For my friend's network, he may have to go with your last example, which I didn't even think about. He will not be able to change anything on the source router and will only have control over his router, which is in his own office. He will use the wireless settings for his printers. Thanks for the information and help.
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Expert Comment

by:ElrondCT
ID: 26185635
You could also purchase a simple Wireless Access Point, since that's all you really want to use the second router for. You probably don't want to have both routers running separate LANs, because then it'll be difficult to impossible for computers on the two routers to talk to each other. That's why JDLoaner suggested bridge mode. Though if that's not something you expect to ever need (you're just concerned about Internet access), you could leave the second router to operate in full router mode, which may be a bit easier to set up.

Yes, I would recommend using a static IP address (on the WAN side) for router #2; make sure it's below the range of IP addresses that router #1 will give out automatically. (I typically start the DHCP table at 192.168.1.100, leaving everything below 100 for static uses, like printers, access points, and laptops that are preset. So then you might use 192.168.1.20 for router #2.) To reduce confusion, if you're going to leave DHCP active on router #2 (non-bridge mode), use a different subnet for it, like 192.168.2.x.

Make sure you use a different wireless channel for each, and keep the channel numbers separated by at least 5 (such as channels 1 and 6), so the signals don't conflict.
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by:jhieb
ID: 26185699
Thanks ElrondCT. I appreciate the caveats. This is extremely helpful.
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