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How to «change» your ISP’s router for a faster and more powerful one

Cómo «cambiar» el router de tu proveedor de Internet por uno más rápido y potente

One of the reasons why the Internet becomes slow, especially when the whole family connects, is usually the «router» that our Internet provider or «ISP» installs for us. In general, the technical specifications of such equipment may not handle more than one hand of devices connected simultaneously. To believe that these types of state-of-the-art equipment can handle it eight devices at the same time, it may even be optimistic for some. seller Flash router claims that Netgear R6700, a team of dual core, is designed to two to five dispozitive. Based on this statement, I would not be able to understand the number of computers that Huawei HG8546M can manage, whose single processor does not exceed 700 MHz.

In addition, we must keep in mind that the equipment that our ISP leaves and that we call «router», in many cases is really a «combo» of modem + router, ie it fulfills a dual function ( regardless of functions as Switch and Access Point). If we talk about fiber optics, it converts electricity or digital signals into light and vice versa (modulation and demodulation) and is also responsible for «directing» information from the Internet to each of our computers and vice versa.

The ideal would be to replace that modem + router with more powerful equipment, but since this combination of functions cannot be easily found, one of the most common solutions is to delegate the function of the router, which is the one that requires the most, to a more powerful independent equipment that can cope well with more equipment, in addition to ensuring that the WiFi signal can reach the entire house.

How to change the ISP router

To transfer network management to a new router, you will need to enter the software for your ISP’s modem router and also for the new router. Therefore, you need to know in advance the access data to both computers, ie the IP address, user and access password and how to enter their settings. You should also become familiar with some basic concepts about networking or networking.

Because you will need to set up both computers separately, it will be best to have a network or internet cable to connect to the router through a computer. Remember that you need to configure the IP of that PC so that it falls within the IP domain of the router. That is, if the router’s IP is 192,168,100.1, you must configure the computer with IP 192.168.100.Two, e.g.

You will also need to call your provider for some information and possibly some help.

For this tutorial I will use my Huawei HG8546M equipment (ONT modem + router) and a TP-Link WR941ND router with DD-WRT firmware. Even if you do not have the same equipment, the idea, the name of the parameters and the procedure should be similar.

In the ISP’s Modem + Router or ONT

First, enter the modem-router configuration in the web browser of a device connected to the computer, using its IP address, which in my case is 192.168.100.1. Then enter your username and password for access.

Once inside, you should access the «WAN» or «Internet» information, which is usually under the «Status» tab. As we transfer the Internet connection from the modem-router to our new router, we will need to copy the following data: MAC address, VLAN and its priority, IP acquisition mode and Gateway. We have indicated them with numbers, to identify where this data should be configured in the new router.

We also need to go to the WAN tab and, in the WAN configuration, write down the username and password. In my case, the user is visible, but the password is not. Although it’s perfectly possible to see the key behind these points (in Chrome, right-clicking on points, «Inspect item» and in the HTML code viewer, in the snippet entry (…) type = »password», change «password» to «text»), I came across about 50 characters: it was the encrypted password. Therefore, I had to contact my ISP to find out what the unencrypted password was, what is required.

So far we only read the data on our modem router. But at this point we will have to make the changes we see in the image, that is, in WAN configuration, in the WAN Mode line, change the Route WAN option to Bridge WAN. Below we need to activate the LAN port that will be used to transfer the connection to our new router, in my case from the Binding options. I chose the LAN2 port, but you can choose the one you want.

In my case, I had no problems activating Bridge WAN and applying the changes, but if the error or warning is generated «The current service type is not supported in WAN bridge mode«, There is a simple solution that is explained in this video.

Before you click «Apply» to save your changes, I warn you that your Internet connection will be lost and you will be out of service until you configure the other router, so do this when no one in your home will use the Internet. In any case, you can always return to the previous configuration to have the service again.

Important: When you turn on Bridge mode and turn on the new router, some modem-router settings may be lost, such as port forwarding or opening. Be sure to copy this information elsewhere for later configuration on the new router.

On the new router

Once the work on the modem-router is finished, we need to do the configuration on the new router. After entering the configuration page using the IP address, username and password, you will need to search Internet settings or WAN. There we will have to fill in some information we got from the modem router, in my case, the type of connection, username and password. You must also enter the same local IP address for the modem router, subnet mask, and gateway. In my case, these last settings appear on the same screen, but you can probably find them in the «LAN» section in the router.

You will also want to enable DHCP based on what has been configured on the modem router. As for the rest of the fields, they should not be changed, unless your ISP indicates otherwise.

When you’re done, save your changes. Remember that from now on, you need to save the changes on each screen where you make changes.

The next step is to give the new router the same MAC address as the modem router. This is necessary because ISPs generally do not allow computers whose MACs they have not previously registered to connect.

This option is called Clone the MAC address and is usually on the same Network Setup tab. You just need to enter the same MAC we got from our modem router and save the configuration.

Assuming that your router does not have the MAC Clone option, you must call your ISP to request the registration of the MAC of the router you want to associate with the service.

Some ISPs use VLANs, as in my case, and fortunately, the DD-WRT firmware on my TP-Link provides support for this configuration in the «Networks» or «Network» tab. In the VLAN tagging section we can add a new VLAN, we can configure the ID (tag number) and priority with the same values ​​as our modem router.

We need to make sure that this VLAN is assigned to the router’s WAN port, which in my TP-Link corresponds to the interface eth1. In other brands of routers with DD-WRT, WAN may correspond to another interface, or so I understand (2). This must be configured in both the VLAN and the port configuration, as we see at the bottom of the image. A little below I added the MAC of the modem router in the eth1 configuration, although I’m not sure if it’s necessary.

Your router might not support VLAN, and if your ISP uses this technology, you will not be able to configure your router as a replacement. This is a major absence that I noticed on two of the older routers in the TP-Link WRXXX series. It seems that more modern versions already integrate VLAN support, but if you can’t invest in another router, you can install the DD-WRT firmware to get this feature.

Finally, check to see if any changes we made to all previous tabs or tabs have been retained. In this case, apply the configuration.

Once both devices have been configured, all you have to do is connect them with an Ethernet cable (preferably category 6 for optimal communication), from the port configured in the modem router (in my case LAN2) to the WAN or Internet port of the new router, as shown, you can see in the image above.

If all went well and your router managed to «connect» to your ISP, you should see the Internet LED on in the same color as the other LEDs, in the case of my TP-Link in blue. In the «Status» tab of the new router configuration, the WAN option, you should see that the Connection Status is «Connected», your IP address and the rest of the data obtained from your ISP.

conclusions

This task may require some research on the modem router, the replacement router you are going to use, and even, as we have seen, a little help from your ISP. However, the effort is worth it, as it can solve one of the biggest problems with a home internet service: the saturation of the modem router, the slowness due to many connected devices and the need to restart constantly.

In my case, even using a similar alternate router in specifications with my provider’s modem router, dividing the workload between the two computers I saw a noticeable improvement in my Internet, less charging time (buffering), eliminating intermittencies at opening YouTube, Netflix or streaming services and without delay when loading web pages, even if the new router reaches 100% CPU usage during peak hours. I guess it should be even better with a larger hardware router.

I had no problem doing this setup with my current ISP, where they assigned me a static public IP. This was not the case with another ISP, where I received a dynamic private IP or DHCP assigned. This bridge mode apparent was the cause of the problems in online games (but not in other things apparently). There were days when I couldn’t connect or, if I could, there were permanent disconnections every two or three minutes. It seems that the ISP temporarily fixed it by assigning a static (private) IP to my service, but the problem returned after a few days. In short, using bridge mode can be a problem for some ISPs (and for you). If something happens, you will need to contact your provider to resolve it together.

If in the end it is not possible to replace your provider’s router as shown, another alternative is usually to connect the second router as an access point to manage the wireless network. In this case, a network cable is connected from one LAN port of the modem-router to one LAN port of the second router. In the latter, you can assign any IP address, turn on the wireless network, ignore the WAN, and turn off DHCP. After it works, the modem-router’s WiFi network can be turned off. Unfortunately, with this solution, the modem router can still be overloaded during peak hours and can slow down internet service.

reference: NCConsumer (RAM, router CPU), ADSLAyuda, YouTube, Google

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