Computers & Electronics

What is it with me and trashing routers and access points?

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[OP]
Member
May 29, 2010
229 posts
16 upvotes
Vancouver

What is it with me and trashing routers and access points?

I have an asus rt-n16.

After a bit of testing, it seems that the N antenna speed no longer works. It works on G, but not N. I've reflashed, reinstaled and reconfigured and I've come to the conclusion that it's gone kaput.

I also have a TP link N access point. That one has gone kaput too. I was hoping that it could last longer than a day, but after a couple of months, it needs to be reset at least once a day.

I've gone through a couple of linksys routers too.

My network just seems to eat hardware. A house with 7 people and their devices and netflix and QOS. One router/ap with an ethernet connected AP to improve signal in a distant area.

Consumer stuff just doesn't seem to work well.

I need some help in rethinking how I go about with my hardware...
59 replies
Sr. Member
Mar 6, 2012
720 posts
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Do you keep your hardware in a cabinet or other enclosed area that could cause them to overheat? Are they always getting plugged into the same electrical socket? Heat or electrical issues are the only two things I can think of that would cause your hardware to die prematurely.
[OP]
Member
May 29, 2010
229 posts
16 upvotes
Vancouver
toy187 wrote: Do you keep your hardware in a cabinet or other enclosed area that could cause them to overheat? Are they always getting plugged into the same electrical socket? Heat or electrical issues are the only two things I can think of that would cause your hardware to die prematurely.
The router is about 26 months old. It spent one summer in a cabinet, but I since then it's been out in the open getting air.

I also had 2 linksys e900's go bad. I can't think it would have been the tomato firmware I flashed on it. but the other N Access point has stock firmware on it.
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Feb 8, 2006
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I've heard of those routers going bad, it happens. I've never had a router go bad - that said, I only buy legendary routers, like the WRT54g and the RT-N66U.

RT-N16 might have been a little underpowered for a house with 7 users, if you have a 40mbit+ connection.
Heatware: 2-0-0
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[OP]
Member
May 29, 2010
229 posts
16 upvotes
Vancouver
cloneman wrote: I've heard of those routers going bad, it happens. I've never had a router go bad - that said, I only buy legendary routers, like the WRT54g and the RT-N66U.

RT-N16 might have been a little underpowered for a house with 7 users, if you have a 40mbit+ connection.
30mbps connection, but I regularliy do transfers between computer in the order of 100's of GB.

I do have a wrt54gl and if I could wire on an N spec antenna, I would.
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
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Brampton
Maybe it hasn't gone bad. N is supposed to only work in a airspace that isn't crowded with Wireless signals (read you will NEVER realistically get channel bonded full speed N in 99% of situations). Maybe over the last few months you've just gotten more wireless neighbors or they have upgraded their wifi routers so there's just more interference around. Your router will autodrop back to G (It is part of the N Spec) if interference is detected.
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2006
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Funny... I've never had any sort of issue whatsoever with pfSense and Unifi.
Double funny that it's also what I recommend to everyone.

But no... I'm the crazy one even though we have at least one thread a week on here alone about how my router sucks.
cloneman wrote: I only buy legendary routers, like the WRT54g
That router sucked back in the day. It sucks even worse today.
The only reason that it was tolerated was due to the fact that every other router sucked worse.
It was the least worst option to go with.
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Feb 8, 2006
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yeah, you are the crazy one. pfsense isn't for everyone.

for one thing, it's more expensive and doesn't come with wifi hardware. It also has has no turnkey QoS system. I'd only consider it if you're on 100mbit+ cbsle/fiber and tomato is overwhelmed.
Heatware: 2-0-0
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Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
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cloneman wrote: yeah, you are the crazy one. pfsense isn't for everyone.
pfSense is pretty buggy for anything beyond the basics. When it works, it works great, but when it doesn't - it's a PITA to debug.
death_hawk wrote: Funny... I've never had any sort of issue whatsoever with pfSense and Unifi. \
If you haven't experienced a single issue with pfSense, somehow I doubt you're putting it through its paces or you're oblivious. It doesn't take much to run into a pfSense bug...
[OP]
Member
May 29, 2010
229 posts
16 upvotes
Vancouver
tebore wrote: Maybe it hasn't gone bad. N is supposed to only work in a airspace that isn't crowded with Wireless signals (read you will NEVER realistically get channel bonded full speed N in 99% of situations).
Still doesn't explain why the 2ndWAP I have running a N-Signal works ~~perfectly fine~~ when it's fresh from a reboot.
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fefrie wrote: Still doesn't explain why the 2ndWAP I have running a N-Signal works ~~perfectly fine~~ when it's fresh from a reboot.
Actually it might.
Have you tried just running with just the Router and no second AP. Your second AP might be the problem it might be ignoring "good neighbour policy" and spewing massive amounts of interference, there are APs known for this, manufactures think it a good idea to pump more power to yell louder than other units. Might be a good idea from a dBi perspective(only part of the picture) but all it does is make for a noisy environment killing spectrum for everyone.

That bolded part is exactly how something that is compliant with the N protocol is supposed to work. It starts off full spectrum then as it detects interference it drops back rates and bands until it finds the most stable.
cloneman wrote: yeah, you are the crazy one. pfsense isn't for everyone.

for one thing, it's more expensive and doesn't come with wifi hardware. It also has has no turnkey QoS system. I'd only consider it if you're on 100mbit+ cbsle/fiber and tomato is overwhelmed.
DAFAQ?
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Aug 22, 2006
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coolspot wrote: If you haven't experienced a single issue with pfSense, somehow I doubt you're putting it through its paces or you're oblivious. It doesn't take much to run into a pfSense bug...
Unless I'm mistaken, you still haven't posted any significant bugs that will affect 99% of users.
There's certainly bugs in some of the more obscure 3rd party modules but considering that most consumer routers don't even understand that concept I don't think it really counts.

I've deployed dozens and am currently running a half dozen pfSenses in various locations running various services and have never come across anything that's broken.
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Oct 6, 2005
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death_hawk wrote: Unless I'm mistaken, you still haven't posted any significant bugs that will affect 99% of users.
There's certainly bugs in some of the more obscure 3rd party modules but considering that most consumer routers don't even understand that concept I don't think it really counts.
All my bugs are with the core system, even the package restart issue, most recently:

Bug #4856, Traffic Shaper blocks traffic when the config is otherwise changed
Bug #4424, Adding and removing shaper repeatedly causing interface crash
Bug #4817 (Closed): rc.start_packages: Restarting/Starting all packages on config sync
Bug #4474 (Confirmed): IP address change triggers reload of all packages
Bug #3948, Changing OpenVPN from tun to tap or vice-versa breaks that instance

So, I guess you don't use the Traffic Shaper much, or OpenVPN, or packages?

I don't even have to try hard and I encounter bugs. I find it suspect that with your number of supposed deployments that you haven't encountered a single problem.
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Feb 8, 2006
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we're talking about home users. The only relevant metrics are cost , reliability, and ease of use. Let's ignore reliability, cost and ease of use are issues with pfSense for regular users.
Heatware: 2-0-0
eBay: 69-0-0
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Aug 22, 2006
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coolspot wrote: Bug #4856, Traffic Shaper blocks traffic when the config is otherwise changed
Bug #4424, Adding and removing shaper repeatedly causing interface crash
Bug #4817 (Closed): rc.start_packages: Restarting/Starting all packages on config sync
Bug #4474 (Confirmed): IP address change triggers reload of all packages
Bug #3948, Changing OpenVPN from tun to tap or vice-versa breaks that instance
I don't use the traffic shaper because I've never had a need to.
Even without it I've never had traffic issues.
OpenVPN however gets constant use. Every one of my boxes has VPN on it and most times they're all cross connected to each other.

4474 I'm not seeing something that's broken here. Sure it's mildly annoying that packages restart but it's not breaking anything. Unless it is but that ticket doesn't really elaborate.
3948 Who changes from tap to tun? All my VPN instances start off as tuns and stay that way forever.
4424 Actually seems quite severe.

My point is, pfSense is still FAR better than pretty much ALL stock firmwares and even most 3rd party firmwares.
Even if it was terrible, it's the least terrible option out there.

So, I guess you don't use the Traffic Shaper much, or OpenVPN, or packages?
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Aug 22, 2006
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cloneman wrote: Let's ignore reliability
You may be fine with your router pooping the bed on a regular basis, but I'd pay extra for reliability.
Not that I'm a regular user but I'm clearly not the only one that's fed up on the terrible quality of consumer routers assuming the number of threads I see on here alone.
Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
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death_hawk wrote: 4474 I'm not seeing something that's broken here. Sure it's mildly annoying that packages restart but it's not breaking anything. Unless it is but that ticket doesn't really elaborate.
This causes packages that maintain connections such as siproxd to restart dropping all my SIP calls.
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Jul 14, 2008
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death_hawk wrote: You may be fine with your router pooping the bed on a regular basis, but I'd pay extra for reliability.
Not that I'm a regular user but I'm clearly not the only one that's fed up on the terrible quality of consumer routers assuming the number of threads I see on here alone.
Based on your recommendation and others here on RFD, I jumped into pfSense over a year ago. Best tech decision in a long time!

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