Do you have an old router that you do not use, or do you want to improve the operator? We teach you to configure a router bridge mode to increase WiFi coverage and add new features.
The routers that give (rent) the operators do not stand out precisely for their speed and performance. They don’t usually have a lot of WiFi coverage, they have few LAN ports, the firmware is capped, and even some of its features are disabled.
That is why more and more people use the Bridge or neutral mode to connect a second router and improve the performance of the Internet connection.
Table of Contents
- Bridge Mode
What Is Bridge Mode?
The Bridge mode or bridge , also called neutral, is to use a router as a bridge to share the connection and all or parts of its functions to another router. For example, some operators require a special router configuration mode that is not compatible with other models. In that case, we put the operator in Bridge mode and pass the connection to another router much more powerful that will give us more speed or new features.
Another situation is that your original router only has a 2.4 GHz WiFi network. You can connect it in Bridge mode to a dual soft router. And connect the wireless devices in the 5 GHz WiFi network there.
Or maybe you have an old unused router in the closet. Connect it in Bridge mode to increase Wi-Fi coverage , or add more LAN ports to connect consoles, PCs, Smart TVs, etc.
There are many ways to configure the router in Bridge or neutral mode. You can connect both routers by cable and have the second one perform all or only some of the tasks. Or you can connect them wirelessly and have everyone maintain their own independent WiFi network. Or that both WiFi networks merge into one.
In this tutorial we will focus on the most common use, and at the same time, one of the easiest to implement: connect a router in bridge mode to improve WiFi coverage, both by cable and wireless mode.
It is important to realize that routers are configured very differently according to the brand, and call the same things differently. Here we will give an explanation as generic as possible of how to activate the Bridge mode, but it may vary depending on the brand and model of routers you use.
We Configure The Secondary Cable Router
To connect two routers, the ideal is to do it via cable. In this way we ensure maximum connection speed and the absence of interference. Even if we put the routers a little apart from each other. It is worth pulling a long cable to connect them.
If the routers are old, any Ethernet cable is worth it. But if you use a new router, the cable should be Cat6, to ensure the maximum possible speed.
Think well where you are going to place the routers. As the objective is to increase WiFi coverage, we must try to cover the entire surface of the house. Therefore place one near the Internet input connector to the house. And the other further, near the area where you want to increase such WiFi coverage. Do not connect them yet, and follow these steps. We will call the router connected to the Internet, main, and the second router that will expand the signal, secondary.
Plug in the secondary router near the computer and reset it by pressing the Reset button on the back. Sometimes you have to insert a small wire or safety pin in a hole:
Then connect the secondary router to the computer with the Ethernet cable. This is temporary, just to configure it. Start the browser and type as web address: http://192.168.1.1 to access the router configuration. If it fails, then access with: http://192.168.1.2 . It will ask for your username and password. Look for them on a sticker on the router or in its box or instruction manual. Sometimes admin / admin or admin / 1234 works. If you don’t know how to do it, check this link:
Enter the router configuration and create WiFi network or enter the name and password of the WiFi network that the router already includes:
Access the LAN or Local Network configuration section (usually in the advanced configuration ). If the primary router has the IP address 192.168.1.1, assign this secondary router the address 192.168.1.2:
In the DHCP section, which is usually within LAN or Local Network, look for the Enable DHCP Server Relay or equivalent option , and enable it if it exists. Save the settings.
Disconnect the cable and verify that the computer or mobile phone detects this new WiFi network wirelessly.
Reconnect the cable to the computer and re-enter the secondary router configuration from the browser. Find the section dedicated to the DHCP server and make sure it is disconnected. If not, disconnect or deactivate the DHCP server (disable DHCP Server). Save the settings.
Turn off both routers and connect them with the Ethernet cable (remember, the secondary router is still connected to the PC).
It is important to connect LAN to LAN, that is, through one of the LAN (yellow) connectors on the back of the router. Do not use the main connector (blue):
Turn on the main router, let it be configured, and turn on the secondary router. Now it will work as an access point by receiving Internet over the cable, and transmitting it on your WiFi network . In the areas where it provides coverage, make sure you connect to the secondary router’s WiFi network. You can also use the WiFi network of the main router independently.
Disconnect the secondary router from the computer. And place it in the area of the house where it will work as an access point.
Wireless Bridge Mode
You can also connect two routers in bridge or wireless neutral mode. It is useful if you are going to place one far away from the other and do not want to pull a long cable.
The way to do it changes depending on the brand and model of the router.
You have to enter the configuration of the secondary router by connecting it to a PC and, from the browser, access http://192.168.1.1. If it fails, then try: http://192.168.1.2 . Enter the username and password, go to the Advanced Configuration of the router and in the Wireless or Wireless Network section we look for a section called Bridge Mode or Wireless Bridge:
We have to activate this Bridge Mode so that the secondary router connects to the main WiFi network. Depending on the brand of the router, in some cases you will have to enter the MAC address of the other router (it appears in its configuration), or enter the data of the WiFi network that we are going to link: network name, and password.
It is a simple process that allows us to take advantage of a second router to improve WiFi coverage.