Router toast?


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Thread: Router toast?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Router toast?

    I had an interesting bout with my router. It is on IP 192.168.0.1 and supposed to serve out IP addresses between 192.168.0.2 and 192.168.0.255 (not that I have that many computers, but that's what the range is set to). This worked well for about 3 years.

    One day the wireless computers suddenly wouldn't work. It seemed to no longer like certain IP addresses to be assigned to particular MAC addresses, so I had to clear the configuration and add them all back. Then it would just randomly assign a non-functional IP address. Unplugging the router for a few seconds seemed to work fine. Then it got the point where even the wired computers wouldn't work, and then sometimes only one of the wired computers would work and no other computer would. All of the computer would do crazy stuff. For example, here is a scenario that occurred with my Macbook (using wireless adapter en1):

    It would start out like this, showing 192.168.0.89 but I still couldn't ping any machines (even the router) or establish any connections:

    Code:
    adamwest:~ bmayes$ ifconfig en1
    en1: flags=8863<UP,BROADCAST,SMART,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> mtu 1500
    	inet6 fe80::21b:63ff:fe04:67c8&#37;en1 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x6 
    	inet 192.168.0.89 netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast 192.168.0.255
    	ether 00:1b:63:04:67:c8 
    	media: autoselect status: active
    	supported media: autoselect
    The wireless status on the computer would cycle between connected and disconnected. This happens on my wireless Linux systems as well. After it reconnected, it switches to this (notice that the media line changes):

    Code:
    adamwest:~ bmayes$ ifconfig en1
    en1: flags=8863<UP,BROADCAST,SMART,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> mtu 1500
    	inet6 fe80::21b:63ff:fe04:67c8%en1 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x6 
    	inet 192.168.0.89 netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast 192.168.0.255
    	ether 00:1b:63:04:67:c8 
    	media: autoselect (<unknown type>) status: inactive
    	supported media: autoselect
    Then it seems to settle on this with a totally wrong IP:

    Code:
    adamwest:~ bmayes$ ifconfig en1
    en1: flags=8863<UP,BROADCAST,SMART,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> mtu 1500
    	inet6 fe80::21b:63ff:fe04:67c8%en1 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x6 
    	inet 169.254.251.125 netmask 0xffff0000 broadcast 169.254.255.255
    	ether 00:1b:63:04:67:c8 
    	media: autoselect status: active
    	supported media: autoselect

    I'm not sure where it's getting the 169.254.251.* IP addresses but somehow that's what they would get.

    After the router seemed to degrade to unusable within about a week, I finally just purchased a new router. Does anyone think it's possible to save my old one? I flashed it to the latest firmware about 2 years ago, and it's still the most current level so I suppose I could try to flash it again but I'm not sure it will do any good. The new router doesn't have these problems but MAN it is expensive to get a wireless router that has gigabit ports!!!
    "The author of that poem is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name."

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    The 169.254.*.* i.e APIPA (Automatic Private IP Address) is a DHCP failover mechanism when the client can not get an address from the server.

    Looks like the router went bad.

  3. #3
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    Well at this point you can try anything without worry, I'm not sure if this site will have firmware for your brand or not (you didn't say what kind router you have) but it may be worth a try.
    www.dd-wrt.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by michaelk
    The 169.254.*.* i.e APIPA (Automatic Private IP Address) is a DHCP failover mechanism when the client can not get an address from the server.
    Minor nitpick: APIPA is what Microsoft calls this feature. It is actually known as link-local.

    This feature comes in handy, for instance, if you connect a number of machines to a simple Ethernet hub. Each of the machines will then assign itself a link-local address, and thereby facilitate interconnectivity.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrrangerman43
    Well at this point you can try anything without worry, I'm not sure if this site will have firmware for your brand or not (you didn't say what kind router you have) but it may be worth a try. www.dd-wrt.com
    What router do you have, BTW? Broadcom and Atheros WiSOC based hardware is usually the most compatible with third-party firmware.

    Other options are: FreeWRT, OpenWRT, HyperWRT + Tofu, and Tomato. A complete list can be found here.

    All of these distros provide you comprehensive hardware compatibility lists and installation guides for your make and model of router. You'll want to check them out first.

    Lastly, how about giving your router a 30/30/30...? (link, link).
    Last edited by i845_; 02-23-2009 at 07:44 AM.

  5. #5
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    I would suggest backing up your router's configuration and doing a hard reset to the factory specs. Then, you can reload your configuration. Most routers do have a reset button on the back that you hold for a number of seconds to do a factory reset. I've had that solve a cranky router several times.
    I equivocate, therefore I might be.

    My Linux/Unix Boxes:
    Home: Slackware 10, CentOS 5.3, RHEL 5, Ubuntu Workstation 9.10, Work: RHEL 5, CentOS 5

  6. #6
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    Since this configuration has worked for so long, I suggest changing the channel frequency on your router. It most likely is at 6. I had a similar issue not long ago were everything worked just fine, then bammo, the wireless stuff started doing crazy things. I know you say the wired side is misbehaving, and changing the routers channel would not effect that, but something to try. BTW, I am using the Linksys WRT54G with Tomato, version 1.23.
    You can tuna piano, but you can't tune a fish.

    http://www.lunar-linux.org/
    It's worth the spin.

    http://www.pclinuxos.com/page.php?7
    Puts the rest to shame.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all of your suggestions. I have tried the hard reset on the router and that didn't work. I didn't save the configuration but I manually set everything again and it still failed.

    I also know for a fact that I changed the default channel. I searched my neighborhood and found that (as you said) most of the routers were on channel 6 so I changed mine to a different channel (I think it was 11). That's definitely not the issue.

    For those wondering, it's a D-link DGL-4300 router. I'm pretty sure it's hosed and since I already bought a new router I suppose it doesn't matter much. Good to know about the APIPA though. I'll try to flash it with different things and see what happens. It doesn't really matter much at this point since it's most likely busted anyway!
    "The author of that poem is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name."

  8. #8
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    D-Link and long life do not really go hand in hand, when it comes to routers.
    I equivocate, therefore I might be.

    My Linux/Unix Boxes:
    Home: Slackware 10, CentOS 5.3, RHEL 5, Ubuntu Workstation 9.10, Work: RHEL 5, CentOS 5

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by klackenfus View Post
    D-Link and long life do not really go hand in hand, when it comes to routers.
    Unfortunately I believe that I may have just found this out the hard way. The only reason I went with that router when I did was because it offered:

    A) a detachable antenna, meaning it could swapped out for a more powerful one in case the signal didn't reach
    B) gigabit wired ports

    My old Netgear router is still kicking but at my previous place of residence, it wasn't strong enough to reach my bedroom with any consistent/reasonable strength. I think my roommate's closet was a lead box or something, and replacing the antenna required cutting and soldering on a new one, which I didn't want to do. After sitting in my closet for a few years, it now belongs to my father-in-law and works great at his place.

    I purchased a Linksys this time (N-Ultra Range Plus). I didn't particularly care that it supports 802.11N, but apparently in order to get gigabit ports on a router you MUST buy an 802.11N capable router. I was unable to find any 802.11G routers with gigabit ports (they were all 10/100), which is odd considering I found one 3 years ago. Actually, it's not odd...it's the networking companies way of screwing us out of more money by forcing us to purchase the more expensive routers if we want gigabit connections.

    Despite the price, so far I am very pleased with the Linksys however. It has been stable and the range is excellent. I don't have any wireless cards capable of using the N stuff, but my 54G cards are all operating at the top of their range.
    Last edited by gamblor01; 02-24-2009 at 08:26 PM.
    "The author of that poem is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name."

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by gamblor01 View Post
    I didn't particularly care that it supports 802.11N, but apparently in order to get gigabit ports on a router you MUST buy an 802.11N capable router.
    Untrue. You can do this:

    1) WRT54GL (or whatever wireless router)

    connected (via crossover if you want, but not needed since the switch in the 54GL does autosensing) to:

    2) random gigabit switch

    which is in turn connected to all the wired gigabit-capable hosts.

    Since your wireless machines can't get anywhere near gigabit speeds anyway (not even anywhere near 100mbps), you might as well have the link between the wireless and the gigabit switch run at 100mbps, and then have the all the wired gigabit clients be connected to the one switch. No need to combine them, especially if you can spend less on the separate devices as well.

  11. #11
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    True bwkaz, and I actually debated that while I was in the store. We used to do this at my old apartment. The wireless router was in my friend's room, and then it had a wire that went to the ipcop system, which then served DHCP clients that he attached to his (actually my old) Linksys switch. I guess if I hadn't given him that switch I could have purchased a much cheaper router and done this!

    However, I did give away my switch to him years ago, and I decided that I had enough electronic junk on and around my computer desk, so I wanted to consolidate as much as possible. There are (I'm sure) still routers for sale that are 54G with gigabit ethernet, but they are no longer available in store at Best Buy or Circuit City (not that much is available at Circuit City these days). The router was like 20% off at Circuit City so I got a good deal on the one I bought, but it was still pricey...
    "The author of that poem is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name."

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