[SOLVED] new Access Point causes Router (and then Access Point) to lose internet connection - ip address issue?

Nov 27, 2021
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I have a Speedefy Router and am installing a new Alfa N2S wireless Access Point as an AP Router. I've only installed one other access point (EAP 110) that was plug and play, so don't have real experience.

After configuring and rebooting the Router and Access Point, both the Router and Access Point have internet access and work as expected. But, when I rotated connection from the Router to the Access Point and back to the Router, the client device when connected would state "no internet connection." Yet, other client devices that were connected throughout to the Router, would stay connected the entire time.

  1. Connect to Access Point - works as expected
  2. Switch to Router - works as expected
  3. Switch to Access Point - connects, but Access Point no longer has internet connectivity
  4. Switch to Router - connects, but Access Point no longer has internet connectivity
  5. Other client devices can be connected to either the Access Point or Router the entire time, and will retain internet connectivity
  6. When Access Point is disconnected from Router (by removing ethernet) the Router has regular internet connectivity again.
Because other devices remain connected with internet connectivity, I think it might be an IP address issue.

Currently, for the Access Point, I have
WAN Settings: Cable/Dynamic IP (DHCP)
Hostname: ALFA (default)
DNS Servers blank (default)

Perhaps I should set the IP to static? Should I contact the internet provider? Thank you.
 
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It should work this way, the switch fabric blocks the mac when it appears on two different ports (wired through the access point, then wireless or other wired port) to prevent packet storming. Similar to spanning tree protocol to avoid loops. Resetting the switch fabric (the whole router in your case) will clear mac tables and remove the blockage till the next time you try connecting to the other port. It would not happen if you would not switch back and forth.
 
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Reactions: sandwichtime
Nov 27, 2021
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Thanks. I will wait and see if it stays stable. Biggest surprise is if I installed it correctly the first time. The mac address table makes sense, I thought maybe both the router and access point assigned an ip address and that was the conflict. Thanks.
 
Nov 27, 2021
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So this appears correct. Android 10 will automatically connect to a remembered network. (Android 11 allows to set for manual connection of a remembered network). My network switched automatically, lost internet connection. I waited a few minutes (instead of switching back and forth) and internet connectivity returned. Frustrating. I will have to try to understand if there is a way to stop automatic switching. Thank you.
 
It should switch fairly quickly. All these fancy mesh networks boxes would not function very well if it did not.

It varies a bit between routers but if you switch back and forth quickly multiple times some devices will block the mac temporarily. If you do just a simple move from say 1 port to another it should just switch over as soon as it see the mac address and it will invalidate the old path.
 
Nov 27, 2021
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SOLUTION: When the Alfa N2S is used as an Access Point plugged into a Router, the Alfa should be configured as an AP Bridge, not AP Router. Having two routers distribute IP addresses is the apparent problem.

Today, the client device could get an internet connection to the Router though it had been connected to the Router when shut off yesterday. Its IP address was 192.168.2.x that must have been given out by the Access Point, not the Router, though it had only been connected to the Router. I think the phone had a x.x.3.x IP address that must have been given out by the Router, even though it was connected to the Access Point, but it was confusing. In any case, the IP addresses did not make sense.

So, I reconfigured the Alfa to act as a Bridge not a Router, and the problem was gone. Can toggle between the Router and Acess Point without any delay or problem.
 
Nov 27, 2021
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I thought a bridge would be to connect two physical locations, but it makes sense there can't be two routers. There are nearly zero internet results for "Alfa N2S" so not much to go on.

I am trying to push internet access into a forest area for security cameras, so I wanted to test it as a 10 dBi directional antenna before snow gets here.

Thanks for the advice.
 
Nov 27, 2021
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To expect any positive results, you would have to use directional antennas (are you trying out Yagi type?) on both ends. It is two-way connectivity, so you want to hear as well as be heard...
I don't understand about the need for directional antennas on both ends.

My cell phone gets some internet reception with the current Access Point, the TP Link eap 110, that has 3 dBi omni directional antennas. I plan to experiment by replacing the omni directional antennas with directional antennas.

I am starting with 14 and 19 dBi antennas described as sector antennas. I will install them and start with a wifi analyzer to see if I can get a better signal in certain areas.
 

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