Router/Modem Issue I Have

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Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 3:13 pm

Hi, I currently have three laptops (Two Windows 8 and a Windows 7 model) that use WiFi. Also we have three cell phones using WiFi sometimes and a few more people that are over sometimes use WiFi as well. Plus I have an Xbox, but don't always use it. Our tv has Netflix which we sometimes do or YouTube. The last thing is that we stream tv shows or movies on our laptops connected with a HDMI cable to the tv.

Currently we have CenturyLink at 12mbps.

What we have is a Actiontec PK5000 DSL Modem Router which was built in 2009 so I am guessing it is just old.

Currently we have been having connecting issues like my mom's Windows 8 computer disconnects itself many times a day usually.

I've read another forum about doing some other things and not having just one router connected, but I honestly have no idea how to do that. I need someone to explain it pretty detailed for me to understand haha.

I thought about getting the C100A router, but then I heard about the ASUS RT-N66U Dual-Band Wireless-N900 Gigabit Router which sounds legit. If I got this router, should I have my PK5000 still connected somehow? I wouldn't know how to make it a bridge or if that's what you call it.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 3:42 pm

You want to make the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, and setup NAT and PPPoE on the new router. If you're paying rent for the PK5000, you can get an Actiontec GT701D for less than $40. But it doesn't autoconfigure for Century Link, so you'll have to set some things manually.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 4:02 pm

AndrewSKY wrote:Hi, I currently have three laptops (Two Windows 8 and a Windows 7 model) that use WiFi. Also we have three cell phones using WiFi sometimes and a few more people that are over sometimes use WiFi as well. Plus I have an Xbox, but don't always use it. Our tv has Netflix which we sometimes do or YouTube. The last thing is that we stream tv shows or movies on our laptops connected with a HDMI cable to the tv.

Currently we have CenturyLink at 12mbps.

What we have is a Actiontec PK5000 DSL Modem Router which was built in 2009 so I am guessing it is just old.

Currently we have been having connecting issues like my mom's Windows 8 computer disconnects itself many times a day usually.

I've read another forum about doing some other things and not having just one router connected, but I honestly have no idea how to do that. I need someone to explain it pretty detailed for me to understand haha.

I thought about getting the C100A router, but then I heard about the ASUS RT-N66U Dual-Band Wireless-N900 Gigabit Router which sounds legit. If I got this router, should I have my PK5000 still connected somehow? I wouldn't know how to make it a bridge or if that's what you call it.




Have to considered the placement of the WiFi Router? Your mom's PC may be in a spot with reflections, dead area, etc... Try moving either her machine or the router. Remember, construction materials make a difference with signal propagation.

You can always either get a repeater, to fill in coverage gaps, or wait and get on of the newer 802.11AC routers. Those utilize beamshaping, to "boost" signal in areas it's needed, with out needlesly sending the signal out in a omnidirectional pattern, which could give your neighbors better coverage than you experience.
Hz so good
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:09 pm

Hz so good wrote:
AndrewSKY wrote:Hi, I currently have three laptops (Two Windows 8 and a Windows 7 model) that use WiFi. Also we have three cell phones using WiFi sometimes and a few more people that are over sometimes use WiFi as well. Plus I have an Xbox, but don't always use it. Our tv has Netflix which we sometimes do or YouTube. The last thing is that we stream tv shows or movies on our laptops connected with a HDMI cable to the tv.

Currently we have CenturyLink at 12mbps.

What we have is a Actiontec PK5000 DSL Modem Router which was built in 2009 so I am guessing it is just old.

Currently we have been having connecting issues like my mom's Windows 8 computer disconnects itself many times a day usually.

I've read another forum about doing some other things and not having just one router connected, but I honestly have no idea how to do that. I need someone to explain it pretty detailed for me to understand haha.

I thought about getting the C100A router, but then I heard about the ASUS RT-N66U Dual-Band Wireless-N900 Gigabit Router which sounds legit. If I got this router, should I have my PK5000 still connected somehow? I wouldn't know how to make it a bridge or if that's what you call it.




Have to considered the placement of the WiFi Router? Your mom's PC may be in a spot with reflections, dead area, etc... Try moving either her machine or the router. Remember, construction materials make a difference with signal propagation.

You can always either get a repeater, to fill in coverage gaps, or wait and get on of the newer 802.11AC routers. Those utilize beamshaping, to "boost" signal in areas it's needed, with out needlesly sending the signal out in a omnidirectional pattern, which could give your neighbors better coverage than you experience.


Second this. It's tempting to just add a router (and that might fix your problem regardless) but if it's consistently your moms computer that is disconnecting, the problem may well be location or some issue with your moms computer.

For example, my wife had a Lenovo laptop that was constantly disconnecting from our network until I removed some crappy application that Lenovo installs at the factory - I don't recall the name offhand. But the network problems went away completely once that app was removed. Ironically, it was supposedly a app to improve network performance...

As far as location, it could be as simple as a solid structure between her machine in the router, other electronics nearby her machine, or even a reflection or dead spot. You can get interference from appliances, radios, etc as well. Try moving her machine to a new location - or the router to a new location - and see if that helps.

There are some handy apps for your smartphone (WiFi Analyzer on Android for example) that will show you graphically how strong your signal is as you move throughout your house. These are useful for finding dead spots.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:39 pm

Ethyriel wrote:You want to make the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, and setup NAT and PPPoE on the new router. If you're paying rent for the PK5000, you can get an Actiontec GT701D for less than $40. But it doesn't autoconfigure for Century Link, so you'll have to set some things manually.


I bought the PK5000 so that is good. We used to have a GT701D though.

Making the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, is that like changing something in the settings from the computer on the router?
cphite wrote:
Hz so good wrote:

Have to considered the placement of the WiFi Router? Your mom's PC may be in a spot with reflections, dead area, etc... Try moving either her machine or the router. Remember, construction materials make a difference with signal propagation.

You can always either get a repeater, to fill in coverage gaps, or wait and get on of the newer 802.11AC routers. Those utilize beamshaping, to "boost" signal in areas it's needed, with out needlesly sending the signal out in a omnidirectional pattern, which could give your neighbors better coverage than you experience.


Second this. It's tempting to just add a router (and that might fix your problem regardless) but if it's consistently your moms computer that is disconnecting, the problem may well be location or some issue with your moms computer.

For example, my wife had a Lenovo laptop that was constantly disconnecting from our network until I removed some crappy application that Lenovo installs at the factory - I don't recall the name offhand. But the network problems went away completely once that app was removed. Ironically, it was supposedly a app to improve network performance...

As far as location, it could be as simple as a solid structure between her machine in the router, other electronics nearby her machine, or even a reflection or dead spot. You can get interference from appliances, radios, etc as well. Try moving her machine to a new location - or the router to a new location - and see if that helps.

There are some handy apps for your smartphone (WiFi Analyzer on Android for example) that will show you graphically how strong your signal is as you move throughout your house. These are useful for finding dead spots.


She doesn't always sit in one place with her laptop, sometimes in the living room or the dining room and sometimes upstairs. I will definitely check out that Wifi Analyzer. It might just be an app on her Windows 8 Laptop since it has had other issues as well. My dad who has a Windows 8 laptop as well has just recently noticed a few issues and he only sits in the living room with it.

I wonder if our router is just in a bad spot as well? It's in a corner with the tv above screwed into the wall and on the same table of the router is a printer connected to it with a bunch of cords for the sound system etc.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:52 pm

AndrewSKY wrote:
She doesn't always sit in one place with her laptop, sometimes in the living room or the dining room and sometimes upstairs. I will definitely check out that Wifi Analyzer. It might just be an app on her Windows 8 Laptop since it has had other issues as well. My dad who has a Windows 8 laptop as well has just recently noticed a few issues and he only sits in the living room with it.

I wonder if our router is just in a bad spot as well? It's in a corner with the tv above screwed into the wall and on the same table of the router is a printer connected to it with a bunch of cords for the sound system etc.




Just remember, metal wall studs, stonework, thick wood, conduits leaking EMI, etc... Will all contribute to the signal doing odd things (reflections, frensel zones, absorption, scattering). Moving the AP is the easiest thing to try. If you've got no pther choice, and it turns out to NOT be an issue with their Comps, a repeater will help hide coverage gaps (at the cost of halving bandwidth while using the repeater. )

Again, 802.11AC routers use multiple antennas to perform beam shaping, so that you wifi signal will only "throw" towards the sectors it's used the most. That cuts down on needing repeaters, amplifiers, or high-DB antennas, which could result in your neighbors getting better signal coverage than you.

Something to think about.
Hz so good
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:30 pm

AndrewSKY wrote:
Ethyriel wrote:You want to make the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, and setup NAT and PPPoE on the new router. If you're paying rent for the PK5000, you can get an Actiontec GT701D for less than $40. But it doesn't autoconfigure for Century Link, so you'll have to set some things manually.

I bought the PK5000 so that is good. We used to have a GT701D though.

Making the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, is that like changing something in the settings from the computer on the router?


I've got a similar situation, but in my case I've got an AT&T Uverse modem/router. I own an Asus RT-56U wireless router (it's the same as the 66, just without 802.11ac). I turned off the AT&T U-Verse wi-fi, and ran an ethernet cable from the modem to the "Internet" socket of the Asus Router. All my networking is done on the Asus router, and I only add 1 hop to the internet. Since's it's over the wire, it's as fast as the network (100 Mbps).. Only downside is that I have to keep the modem and the router next to each other.

If you want to do something similar over wi-fi, that's where you have to go in to the PK5000 settings and set it to bridge mode, and fiddle around with more stuff..
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:39 pm

A couple (well, more than a couple) things.

1. The 2.4 GHz band is very crowded. If you devices support the 5 GHz network, be sure to set them up to run on 5 GHz. Rename the 5 GHz network with a separate name to the 2.4 GHz network, or devices will keep bouncing between the two.

2. Windows 8 is notorious for dropping wi-fi connections. I see the problem on support forums all the time, so if your mom's laptop is disconnecting a lot, it may not just be the router.

3. Asus RT-N66(U) is a nice router. I have the RT-AC66 and it's pretty decent. Be sure to update firmware before using the Aicloud features; there's a nasty security bug. Also, the Netgear R6xxx and R7000 models are nice too. Stay awawy from the D-Link "Gaming" routers like the AC1300, but their other models are also good (read up on every router before buying).

4. If you don't have 5 GHz support, consider upgrading the mini-PCIE wifi card in your laptop. They range from $20-40.

5. As Ethyriel says, set your modem/router to bridge mode and connect the new router to it as if it were just a plain modem.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:55 pm

Voldenuit wrote:
5. As Ethyriel says, set your modem/router to bridge mode and connect the new router to it as if it were just a plain modem.


FYI, a lot of ISP's now days are disabling bridgemode in their firmware on the modem/routers forcing users to use put the new router in the list of DMZ zones on the router/modem. Just something to keep in mind.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 4:36 pm

Update:

So I removed a software called Broadcom Wireless Utility which is not on my Windows 7 laptop so I removed it from her Windows 8 one.
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 5:11 pm

AndrewSKY wrote:Update:

So I removed a software called Broadcom Wireless Utility which is not on my Windows 7 laptop so I removed it from her Windows 8 one.



Did it help? IIRC, Broadcom makes Atheros WiFi chips these days. (Or they make some other WiFi chip, in addition to their Ethernet controllers, ARM chips, etc...

I don't use Win8.1, so I have no idea what it's quirks could be. I'm just speaking from commercial WiFi experience, plus my own glitch encounters.


Edit: For allI know, without looking at it, something may've made her antenna connection come loose, especially if it was dropped occasionally.
Last edited by Hz so good on Wed Mar 19, 2014 5:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Hz so good
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 5:14 pm

druidcent wrote:
AndrewSKY wrote:
Ethyriel wrote:You want to make the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, and setup NAT and PPPoE on the new router. If you're paying rent for the PK5000, you can get an Actiontec GT701D for less than $40. But it doesn't autoconfigure for Century Link, so you'll have to set some things manually.

I bought the PK5000 so that is good. We used to have a GT701D though.

Making the PK5000 into a transparent bridge to handle the DSL connection, is that like changing something in the settings from the computer on the router?


I've got a similar situation, but in my case I've got an AT&T Uverse modem/router. I own an Asus RT-56U wireless router (it's the same as the 66, just without 802.11ac). I turned off the AT&T U-Verse wi-fi, and ran an ethernet cable from the modem to the "Internet" socket of the Asus Router. All my networking is done on the Asus router, and I only add 1 hop to the internet. Since's it's over the wire, it's as fast as the network (100 Mbps).. Only downside is that I have to keep the modem and the router next to each other.

If you want to do something similar over wi-fi, that's where you have to go in to the PK5000 settings and set it to bridge mode, and fiddle around with more stuff..



Appropo of nothing, but certain vendors (RouterBoard, etc) make GigE multilayer switches. As long as your CAT6 is cabled properly, you can totally rock GigE throughout your house for less than $200. :D
Hz so good
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:45 am

Hz so good wrote:Appropo of nothing, but certain vendors (RouterBoard, etc) make GigE multilayer switches. As long as your CAT6 is cabled properly, you can totally rock GigE throughout your house for less than $200. :D


I've got a Cisco GigE switch that I "saved" from my last job... I've also got holes in the wall and a box of Cat6 sitting in the attic crawlspace for the last 4 months... I also have a very patient wife. Granted I'd probably be done by now if she'd let me go up there on my own.. :) I think the Asus Router has GigE, I just don't think the AT&T UVerse POS modem/router does :P Only thing I miss about Cable Internet is that I could use all of my own equipment and not "rent" the modem...
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Re: Router/Modem Issue I Have

Postposted on Thu Mar 20, 2014 7:50 am

You don't need to go that high-end for GigE swtiches, Netgear GS108's are well under $100.

The all in one modem router devices are horrible. Try to dump it in to bridge mode and do stuff off a decent router.
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