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Series 2: Connect your CradlePoint router wirelessly to another access point using the WDS feature

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If you are not sure what Series CradlePoint router you have, please click here.

This article was written based up on firmware version 2.0.0.

The CradlePoint products that this article refers to are in the End of Life process, there will be no further firmware updates for any of these products.  All Knowledgebase articles related to these products have received their final update.  To view our current product line, please visit https://cradlepoint.com/products.

Description:

Wireless Distributed System (WDS) is a technology that allows one or more routers to wirelessly connect to another compatible wireless router to extend the range of the wireless signal from the router connected to the Internet.  Configuring WDS requires changes to be made on both the "primary" router (the router that is connected to the Internet) as well as the "secondary" router (the router that will be extending the range of the primary router).  

In this type of setup, the secondary router essentially connects as a LAN client (instead of as a router) to the primary router.  When any computer connects to the secondary router, any routing and DHCP services will be handled by the primary router.  

This setup will show you how to set up WDS between two CradlePoint routers.  WDS may not be compatible between different router manufacturers, so for assistance or questions about WDS on other brands of routers you may need to contact that manufacturer for assistance.



Directions:

In this walk-through, assume that a CradlePoint MBR1000 ("primary" router) is already connected to the Internet and we want to add a CradlePoint MBR900 ("secondary" router) to extend the primary router's range using WDS.  These directions assume that the primary router is operating on the default 192.168.0.1 LAN IP address, but you can change this if necessary.

Before starting, take note of the wireless MAC address for each router.  CradlePoint products have the MAC address displayed on the label on the bottom of the device.


Part 1: Configuring the "Primary" Router

  1. Log into the CradlePoint's admin console at http://192.168.0.1.
  2. Go to ADVANCED and then WIRELESS (WI-FI) from the left hand column.User-added image
  3. Under ADVANCED WIRELESS SETTINGS, place a check mark next to WDS Enable.User-added image
  4. In the WDS AP MAC Address box, in slot 0 enter the MAC address of the "secondary" router that will be extending this router's range.  In this example, the "secondary" router's MAC address is 003044123456.  If you have other routers that will also connect to this router via WDS, enter those MAC addresses into the other slots.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.User-added image
  5. Make sure that Require User Login has been disabled.  To verify this, go to TOOLS and then USER LOGIN from the left hand column and make sure that the Require User Login box is not checked.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.User-added image
  6. Go to BASIC in the red bar and then WIRELESS in the left column.  Uncheck Enable Auto Channel Scan.  You will need to set the wireless channel on all WDS routers to operate on the same wireless channel.  In our example we will set each router to use channel 1.  You will also need to make sure that the 802.11 mode for each router are configured to the same setting -- if the primary router is using 802.11n and a secondary router is configured using 802.11g they will not be able to connect to each other.  When you are done, click Save Settings, then Reboot Now
Part 2: Configuring the "Secondary" Router  
 
We will now need to set up the "secondary" router with corresponding settings.
  1. Log into the "secondary" router's admin console (at 192.168.0.1 by default).
  2. Go to ADVANCED and then WIRELESS (WI-FI) from the left hand column.User-added image
  3. Under ADVANCED WIRELESS SETTINGS, place a check mark next to WDS Enable.User-added image
  4. In the WDS AP MAC Address box, in slot 0 enter the MAC address of the "primary" router.  In this example, the "primary" router's MAC address is 003044654321.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.User-added image
  5. Like we did previously, make sure that "Require User Login" has been disabled.  To verify this, go to TOOLS and then USER LOGIN from the left hand column and make sure that the Require User Login box is not checked.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.User-added image
  6. Go to BASIC in the red bar and then WIRELESS in the left column.  Uncheck Enable Auto Channel Scan.  You will need to set the wireless channel on all WDS routers to operate on the same wireless channel.  In our example we will set each router to use channel 1.  You will also need to make sure that the 802.11 mode for each router is configured to the same setting -- if the primary router is using 802.11n and a secondary router is configured using 802.11g they will not be able to connect to each other.  When you are done, click Save Settings, then Reboot Now.                             User-added image
  7. You will now need to change the "secondary" router's LAN IP address so that is not trying to obtain the same IP address that the "primary" router is already using.  In this example, we will change the"secondary" router from 192.168.0.1 to 192.168.0.10.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.                          User-added image
  8. Now go to BASIC and DHCP in the left column.  Uncheck the Enable DHCP Server option.  Click Save Settings and select Reboot Later.
After the router reboots, the "secondary" router will connect as a LAN client to the "primary" router.  Any computers that connect to the "secondary" router will be provided IP addresses from the "primary" router's DHCP server and will be able to use "primary" router's Internet connection as if the computer were connected directly to it.


Note:

The CradlePoint MBR1200 router does not support WDS.

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