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Old March 22, 2012, 12:45 AM
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Default Getting the cow food mixer internet connectivity aka the bane of my existence

Ok next time someone asks me to install and setup a network that you got because your brother in-law said it worked at his house .... NOPE not doing it unless I get to design and use the parts I want to use.

/rant



Here is the plan. Getting internet from a Belkin router (1), connection goes to an EnGenius antenna (2) acting as an Access Point, to it's brother antenna (2) acting as a Client Bridge to an EnGenius router (3) acting only as a switch and Access Point for internet connectivity in the barn (no wire connected in WAN port), to the actual cow mixer panel [CMP] (4).

So I learned today that the CMP has a fixed IP of 192.168.200.240 apparently, and requires 3 ports to be opened for it to be accessible by the company providing service to it.

So I setup the whole network using the .200 subnet. Main Belkin router is the only one running a DHCP server ... everyone should be happy. Right ... now during my networking classes we only work with business grade equipment which is a lot more easy to configure. But it seems to make sense.

Now the problems. If I connect to the EnGenius router (3) directly or through wireless, I get an IP from DHCP, internet connectivity and I can ping everyone ...most of the time. I will sometimes lose connectivity with the main Belkin router (unpingable (sp?)). If I connect to the main Belkin router, I can't ping anything after the first EnGenius antenna (AP).

Now this guy did all his cabling and crimping ... and he's a farmer, so I'm buying a cable tester next time so I will test all cables. Are these symptoms related to bad wire? I have a feeling both routers are not playing nice together as I was reading that the specific EnGenius router model was terrible as acting as an AP only.

Any other suggestions/ideas?

Edit : Forgot to add, when I am connected to (3) in the barn, I cannot ping the CMP using the address given to me by the panel maker's tech of 192.168.200.240. Sometimes when I refresh the DHCP table on (1) I will see the panel, next refresh it's gone and I cannot ping. I'll do an IP scan next time to find that sucker.
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Old March 22, 2012, 02:21 AM
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maybe I'm just drunk but.... uhh what?
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Old March 22, 2012, 03:42 AM
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if you see it on the dhcp table, prehaps it's expecting you to "reserve" that address in the dhcp space for it?

-joe
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Old March 22, 2012, 05:41 AM
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I would look at the cable as you said, also the wireless shot. Is there anyway to get a constant stream of data on the signal? you might be getting drops from interference. I know metal buildings can play havoc on wireless signal, that's metal siding, metal roofs... You can still do it, but you might have to play with the positioning. I would confirm wire is good first and then confirm that the signal is solid all the time without any drop offs.

Also can you change the firmware to DD-WRT or something else with those belkins?
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Old March 22, 2012, 10:20 AM
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Yeah the barn has a lot of metal on it's roof but both EnGenius antennas have a line of sight with each other and they both say they have a good connection in software. But I'll try to send a constant ping for ~5 minutes to see if the connection holds for that long.

Sadly I check and none of his current routers are supported by DD-WRT, so I think I'm going to buy a compatible one to replace the EnGenius router.

For the CPM getting an address from DHCP, their tech specifically said that it is supposed to use the .200.240 address, so I'm at a loss as to why it sometimes gets one from DHCP (aka I see it in the DHCP client list table sometimes).

I'm still confused as to why I could ping everything one way, and nothing the other way. For reference, the first time I set it up, everything worked. Than a week later it stopped working, so I think the wiring has something to do with it.

But thanks guys I like other ideas, keep em coming!

Perineum ... perhaps read it slowly might help?
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Old March 22, 2012, 11:01 AM
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step1) check the wires. probably an intermittetant short or just plain BAD install. NEVER trust a wire job YOU didnt do.
step 2) forget about DHCP. set them up as STATIC ips and RESERVE em in the "DHCP server"
step 3) use a laptop and use inSSIDer to SEE what kind of wireless signal strength your getting from those egenius antenna's
step 4) use some tin and make a parabolic dish behind each antenna (hes IS a farmer and should have SOME kicking around) and turn the antennas from omin into uni directional this will boost dbi levels

step 5) if all else fails...runs a wired line under the ground from the house to the barn. stick it in some old copper 1/2 pipe and dig it down a foot or three. Make a rock "roof" over it to further protect the wire BEFORE filling in the trench with dirt.
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Old March 22, 2012, 11:19 AM
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for testing purposes, i would do as suggested and run a hard wire connection first.. sort out your DHCP / ip issue.. etc..

-joe
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Old March 22, 2012, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AkG View Post
step 2) forget about DHCP. set them up as STATIC ips and RESERVE em in the "DHCP server"
Belkin software options are very limited, but the DHCP server is only supposed to handout addresses from .100 to .149 so it shouldn't interfere with .240

Right now everything is static except new computers that connect to the network.

And I don't have a wire that's long enough to reach ... and might be over 300 feet to get there....
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Old March 28, 2012, 03:56 PM
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UPDATE

Checked every wire with my brand new cable tester

Turns out we had 2 culprits. Re-crimped them, 95% of the problems went away.

I changed the router in the barn for an ASUS RT-N10+ flashed with DD-WRT to act as an AP only.

Now I could get full connectivity both wired and wireless.

Weird thing is ... still could not see the CMP on the 192.168.200.240 address. Popped over to the panel, plugged it directly in my laptop with a fixed address on the .200 subnet .... surprise, the panel responds to a ping at the correct address. Unplug the long cable from the DD-WRT-AP, plug in the laptop, same result, I can ping.

Plug back in DD-WRT-AP, me connect my laptop wired or wireless to DD-WRT-AP, complete silence on the ping, host unreachable. Funny thing is my laptop can ping everything except the CMP. Plug the CMP directly to the Client Bridge antenna, connect laptop to the wireless network from the antenna, I can ping the CMP and the technician from the company can ping it from their main office. Change like it was before, complete silence.

I don't understand what is going on or why it's acting that way. The DD-WRT has no DHCP server enabled ... my laptop with a DHCP or a fixed IP can ping everything, but the CMP goes silent when it is plugged into the DD-WRT... any ideas? Same issue before when the router in the barn was the EnGenius, but it would sometimes pop-up in the DHCP client list and would disappear again ... weird
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