Using 2 wireless routers on one small business network

Posted on 2011-02-17
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have a new client.  He runs his business from a building (garage) next to his house.  He has DSL connected to a Linksys WRT54G router (DHCP and Firewall) not using wireless.  This feeds a Cisco SBS switch.  He then has a Cat5 run to his house where he has another switch and now a new wireless router for his wifes laptop.

The business network is set 192.168.x.x and the wireless in the house is using 10.x.x.x.  This is working to get her connected to the internet.  Basically a guest internet connection.

Now what he wants is for the wireless in his house to be able to access his business network instead of being separate.  I have searched here and the Internet, and can't get it going.  I disconnect the 2nd router, assign an IP outside of the DHCP scope but still in subnet, disable DHCP on the 2nd router.  When I connect the cat5 from the garage to the WAN port on the 2nd router, it stops working.

So in the end this is what I am looking at.

(DSL) ----> (SRT54G No wifi) -------> (Switch) -------> (Netgear w/Wireless)

I have see some articles say, to leave the WAN port open and just use the network ports on router2.  If so does the interconnect need to be a Cross over.  Don't have the option to run a 2nd Cat5 to allow for just the house router to control everything.

Any ideas appreciated.
Question by:remmett70
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LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 34923830
WAN port on Router 1 (business) would be connected to DSL.
Set Router 1's address on the LAN as
Set Router 1 to issue LAN addresses using DHCP in 192.168.1.X range.

Connect a LAN port from Router 1 to WAN port of Router 2 (wife) using Cat5.  Unless the routers are a million years old, no crossover cable is required, because modern ports figure this out without the need for crossovers.  (Even if ONE of the two routers is "modern", you'll be fine.)

Set Router 2 to get its WAN address via DHCP.  So Router 2 will have a WAN address somewhere in the 192.168.1.X range, as it will get its LAN address via DHCP from Router 1.
Specify that the GATEWAY address for Router 2 is (the LAN address of Router 1.)
Set Router 2 to issue LAN addresses using DHCP in 10.10.0.X range.
Router 2's LAN address would be
All subnet masks are
LVL 24

Assisted Solution

rfc1180 earned 75 total points
ID: 34923833
>I have see some articles say, to leave the WAN port open and just use the network ports on router2.  If so does the interconnect need to be a Cross over.  Don't have the option to run a 2nd Cat5 to allow for just the house router to control everything.

If both networks were in the same network, you would not use WAN port (If the router had the option to disable Firewall SPI and NAT, then you could use it for routing, but most home routers do not have this option)

As the networks are on different subnets:

>The business network is set 192.168.x.x and the wireless in the house is using 10.x.x.x.

You are forced to use the WAN port as most home routers do not have the ability to create separate networks using the LAN ports (This is called separate Layer 3 interfaces [Or by using VLANs and configuring Inter-VLAN communication]).

You are stuck using the WAN port and then port forwarding and that can get a bit ugly and if you have 2 ports that need to be forwarded to different computers, this will not work. You can try and investigate to see if you can disable the firewall and possible NAT, but very unlikely you will find anything.

you can get a cheap Cisco router (Cisco 2621) with 2 FastEthernet ports to allow this or some other SOHO/Business router that allows the configuration of separate interfaces to route between networks without SPI or NAT.

Good Luck
LVL 13

Assisted Solution

kdearing earned 75 total points
ID: 34924633
Just connect it to the Netgear LAN port and make sure you disable DHCP

Accepted Solution

topdavis earned 200 total points
ID: 34925149
You should be able to just connect the switch to a switch port on the Netgear and not worry about the WAN port.  That should extend the switch connectivity to the Netgear.  Also, turning off the DHCP on the Netgear should keep any clients from getting a DHCP address from the Netgear.


Depending on the distance, you can set the second AP in bridge mode as an option and configure the Linksys as the root AP as normal.

Configure the Linksys with all the necessary Wireless settings and have wireless clients connect to it.  Set the Netgear AP as a wireless bridge.  The Netgear will appear as a Wireless client to the Linksys AP.  Connect the wired user to a switch port on the Netgear Ap in bridge mode.  If you configure the Netgear properly, it will get a DHCP address from the Linksys.  If the Netgear has additional features, you can have it give the wired users an IP address and turn on NAT'ing on the Netgear AP and it will work that way.  This way you won't have to worry about the WAN port or anything like that.
LVL 12

Assisted Solution

profgeek earned 75 total points
ID: 34925722
I think akahan's suggestion will work unless you want both routers in the same network, which you appear to want to do.  If so, give router #2 a fixed LAN IP in the network and connect to one of the LAN ports (not the WAN port).  Then select a pool of IP addresses in that network for router #2 to issue via DHCP, but make sure they don't conflict with anything on router #1.  You mentioned that router #1 doesn't use wireless.  If that's the case, don't give it a DHCP address pool or at least make sure the pools on the two routers are different.

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LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 34926221
Thank you all for your responses.  I will be trying to combine the 2 segments so the 10.x.x.x subnet will disappear and both routers will be on the same 192 subnet.  Can't remember the options in the Netgear setup off the top of my head so I will have to wait until I get on location again to figure exactly but I am expecting that I will just be leaving the WAN port empty and using the LAN ports to interconnect.

It will probably be the early part of next week before I will get there.
LVL 24

Expert Comment

ID: 34927133
Correct, combining the networks and then leaving out the WAN port and using the LAN ports will be the best option.

LVL 26

Assisted Solution

akahan earned 75 total points
ID: 34927523
The reason I did not suggest combining the two networks as described is that I'm not certain that wireless clients of Router #2 would be able to get IP addresses through DHCP from Router #1 if the DHCP server in Router #2 is turned off.   Assuming that they would, however, it is certainly MUCH simpler to just use Router #2 as a switch, by connecting one of its LAN ports to a LAN port on Router #1, and making sure to disable the DHCP server in Router #2.

With either setup, though, you would be able to access resources on the business network from the "wife network."

LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 34947009
Still waiting to get into customer.  Couple more days I should have the results.
LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 35023947
What ended up working was to assign the WAN port on Router#2 to a junk IP, or leaving it set to auto detect, so it is in a range outside of the networks subnet.  Assigning the IP for the LAN setup to the 192,168.1.X outside of the DHCP range of router #1, and disabling Router#2 DHCP.  Then connecting it into the network just as a switch leaving the WAN port empty.

Thanks for the help.

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