Expanding wired port capacity with switches

Expanding wired port capacity with switches

Working on home server and video streaming devices throughout the house, and needing more Ethernet ports.  Have been using Gibabit switches, and have had some trouble with getting my client PCs connected to my Windows Home Servier via their Connector software.  Was wondering if the added switches between the PCs and router could be to blame. I have one 8 port Gigabit switch connected to the router in the basement, tying into the Ethernet ports through out the house, and in two locations (office and home theater) I have 4 port Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet switches attached to the basement 8 port switch in order to provide more needed ports.  Also have a Cisco Wireless AP attached  directly to the router to expand coverage.  

 

Was wondering if this configuration of stacked switches and the added AP could cause issues with the network within the house.  Everything has internet access, and can ping every device.  I've even been ablt to successfully set up port forwarding and can access the Server remotely from the internet.  But my client PCs still have issues connecting via MS connector software.  This is most likely an unrelated issue, but wanted to ask if there's a better procedure to expand my network.  Do I need to set up another router behind my Gateway/router in order properly route traffic to the multiple switches?   

Message 1 of 13 (847 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

If you have Uverse TV and internet, mixing TV/internet on the same switch is going to be problematical.  The priority will be for TV over internet usage. Smiley Wink

 

Chris


Please NO SD stretch-o-vision or 480 SD HD Channels
Need Help? 1-800-288-2020, After he gets acct info, press # a bunch of times, get a menu from Mr. Voice recognition
Your Results May Vary, In My Humble Opinion
I Call It Like I See It, Simply a U-verse user, nothing more

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 2 of 13 (843 Views)
Highlighted
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

[ Edited ]

I'm having problems picturing your configuration.  Any chance you could draw a diagram?

 

There is an issue with having a Wireless Access Point/Router connected via switches, etc. to the same RG port that has a STB or DVR connected to it.  Most Wireless Access Points/Routers do not properly handle the multicast traffic.  Segregating your wireless ethernet traffic from your IPTV traffic on switches connected to different RG ports will correct this.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 3 of 13 (822 Views)

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

Can't draw you a picture, but I can describe.  

 

Point of entry is in the basement, next to where all the cabling for the house terminates on a Cate 5e panel.  Coax connections are all in an enclosure outside the opposite wall.  Gateway is in the basement but I have 8 ports to connect to the rest of the house.  One of those port runs to the office, and one to the Entertainment Center, and both have multiple devices.  Want to install an 8 port switch in the basement, connected to the gateway.  Will also need another switch at both the office and the entertainment center.  I do have enough ports and coax cables to keep all the cable boxes on dvr connected directly to the gateway.  

 

My latest problem is that the gateway is now recognizing my Windows Home Server as a router-behind-router situation, which it is not the case.  It won't let us use the internet until I let it place my server in DMZ.  I've disabled that option in the GUI, and we'll see what happens.  I'm considering installing another router behind the gateway to take over DHCP and DNS.  That or considering another provider, as this gateway really has caused a lot of problems with even the simple things I've tried to do with my home network.  I use my own wireless access point, don't need the wireless, and don't appreciate all the difficulties that the gateway has presented.  If I could disable it all and just use it as a modem, I would prefer that, but it appears that is not an option.  

Message 4 of 13 (712 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

The Residential Gateway is designed to make things simple for the simple user.  Making things complex for the sophisticated user doesn't seem to bother the designers at all.

 

I do not see in either post a mention of whether or not you subscribe to U-verse IPTV service or not. My suggestions for you hinge upon whether or not you need to worry about the IPTV traffic or not.  In short, you have to let the RG provide DHCP and DNS for the IPTV devices regardless.  You can split off your data network and put in your own router (which is probably best for your situation) to provide DHCP/DNS for your data network, but that gets more complicated if you have to share a single Cat 5e run/switch at the far end (now we're talking VLANs and tagging) with IPTV.  No IPTV, simpler situation.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 5 of 13 (681 Views)
Teacher

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

I would say that the QoS in the RG is designed to know the difference b/w IPTV (Video for TV Boxes - STBs) and HSIA (High Speed Internet Access) and therefore I wouldn't worry about the switches. I have a similar setup with 3 x 8 port switches in different parts of the house and everything works well, even with a Teamspeak Server running and all can access a NAS (Network Access Storage). What does bring up a red flag is your mention of devices that actually do DHCP and NAT which could cause conflicts, as long as your access point is configured properly it will work well with the RG but if it is doing DHCP also you will have conflicts with data transmission even though you can ping everywhere.

 

Again, QoS in the RG is designed to tell the difference b/w the IPTV Video packets and the HSIA packets so that shouldn't be an issue overall in a simple network that is just expanded with non-managed switches.

Message 6 of 13 (641 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

The RG does know about the IPTV packets and uses the IGMP protocol with the STB/DVR to provide the multicast signal only on the ports that need to get it.

 

However, when you connect a switch to a RG port and connect a STB to it, that means that switch will get the multicast traffic, and by default will provide it to all devices connected to it.  This can be a problem for certain devices.  This can be addressed using VLANs, or by buying switches that implement IGMPv3 properly.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 7 of 13 (626 Views)

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

I have IPTV, but it is currently all connected via coax, and so will not be a problem isolating it from the second network. I may connect one or two TVs via ethernet, but would have home run cables direct to the Gateway for those as well.  (This is do to ongoing TV signal problems that the Uverse tech has indicated may be due to poor quality coax connections).  In either case, I will leave all TVs connected to the Gateway, and run just my computer network on the second router/network.  

 

I have availavle an old Lynksys (Cisco) BRFSR41 router I can use, at least temporarily.  If it solves my problems, I may upgrade to a router with a GigE integrated switch.  I have located on this forum instructions to put a second router in DMZ on a 3600 gateway.  Mine is a 3801.  Is the procedure the same?  I've noticed already some differences in the GUI interface as described.  A link to the proper procedure/instructions would be appreciated.  At it's simplest, I assume I just disconnect the rest of my network, plug in the router, and let the Gatway detect the router-behind-router condition and throw it into DMZ, then swing the rest of my (computer) network over to the new router?  I would probably want either disable wireless on the Gatway, or at least turn off broadcast SSID, so nothing will connect to it, as anything connected to 2WIRE would have internet access, but not access to the rest of the home network.  

 

Along those lines, is there a comprehensive instruction manaul available for the 3801 Gateway.  There seems to be a lot of functionality available, but the simplified instructions I've been able to locate so far don't begin to explain all it's capabilities.  In particular, I noticed a place to set up a secondary network, and I'm wondering if this plays into my secondary routher setup.  

Message 8 of 13 (611 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

The 3600, 3800 and 3801 are pretty much functionally equivilent as far as networking goes.  The 3600 doesn't do IPTV.  The 3801 is a newer/"better" 3800: better signal processing but the GUI and features are the same as the 3800.

 

I direct anyone looking to do router behind RG to see post 2 in this thread.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 9 of 13 (598 Views)

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

Thanks.  That's the post I had found.  Just wasn't sure it was relevant with the 3801.  I'll probably give that a try.  

 

I was able to locate a manual for the 3801.  Doesn't seem to be ATT specific, so who knows what all applies.  I noticed instructions to put the router in Bridge Mode, and also where you can add a Supplementary Network.  Is the 2nd router in DMZ the best way to go, or is the Bridge Mode and/or Supplementary Network an option?  Can you add a Supplementary Network without putting it in bridge mode.  

 

From the manual (unfortunately, I can't paste in the screenshot it provides):  

 

 

1. Navigate to Settings > Broadband > Link Configuration. Configure the following section of
the Link Configuration page to enable the bridge mode and add supplementary networks:

2. Select the Use Broadband IPs on LAN check box. This enables bridge mode on the
gateway.
3. Enter the subnet mask address in the Specify usable subnet mask text box. You must
specify this address on the LAN devices or supplementary network devices while
configuring the subnet mask. The recommended subnet mask address is 255.255.255.0.
4. Select the Auto Firewall Open check box. This disables the firewall of the gateway. Make
sure that you select this option because the firewall must be disabled for the bridge mode
to function.
5. Select the Use the built-in system MAC address radio button from the System MAC
Address section to use the configured MAC address.
OR
Select the Override the built-in MAC address radio button from the System MAC Address
section, and mention a MAC address of your choice in the Specify MAC address text box.
6. Leave the Upstream MTU value as is. This is the maximum size allowed on packets that
are communicated between your network and your ISP.
7. Select the Add Additional Network check box to tail a router from the Local Ethernet port
located at the back panel of the gateway. This adds a secondary network to the broadband
WAN interface.
8. Enter the gateway address of the supplementary network device in the Router Address text
box. This is the gateway address of the secondary subnet.

9. Enter the Subnet Mask address in the text box. This is the router mask of the secondary
subnet.
10. Select the Auto Firewall Open check box to disable the firewall for all devices using
addresses from this subnet.
11. Clear the Routing check box to ensure that the gateway does not assign IP addresses to
LAN devices through DHCP.
12. Click Save.
The bridge mode is enabled on the gateway, and LAN devices are configured to take the Broadband
IP address. The service LED on the front panel of the device remains off when the gateway is in
bridge mode. The supplementary network represented by the router is tailed to the gateway.

Message 10 of 13 (584 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

I think you'll find that the manual you're looking at doesn't apply to AT&T's version of the firmware in the 3801.  You won't find a bridge mode there.  DMZplus is the best you can do, which is actually not too bad.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 11 of 13 (574 Views)

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

You are correct, there doesn't seem to be a bridge mode, but the supplementary netowrk fields are there.  Any idea what those fields do?  I have set up my secondary router on a new subnet 192.168.2.xxx with a default Gateway of 192.168.2.254.  I've put this second router in DMZ, and followed the rest of the settings instructions in the post referenced above.  All seems to be working great.  

 

Most often, we will connect our wireless devices to my Cisco AP, which is connected to the secondary network, but I would also like to keep the 2WIRE WLAN availabe for a backup.  I would use this for houseguests to access, so they aren't on my home network, and as a backup internet connection for our wireless devices should something go wrong with my secondary network.  My wife needs reliable internet access, and has already expressed some dissatisfaction with my network tinkering of late.  

 

I seem to be able to route from the secondary network to the 2WIRE gateway, but not vice-versa - i.e. I can't access my secondary router GUI at 192.168.2.254 if I'm connected to the 2WIRE WLAN.  It would be nice to be able to route between the two, for access if my Cisco AP fails, etc.  I was wondering if these secondary network settings would somehow allow that to happen, or is there another way?  

Message 12 of 13 (493 Views)
Mentor

Re: Expanding wired port capacity with switches

Sorry to be so late answering this. The supplementary network fields are where you enter information for a static IP block if you rent one.
Message 13 of 13 (437 Views)
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