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MeSue
2016-06-12, 19:14
Hello old friends!

I haven't popped in in ages. Busy, busy. Also because I was perfectly happy in my squeezebox bubble... up until around last September. That was when my husband and I each got new Microsoft Surface Pro tablet computers. Nice machines... We like them. But this has wrecked havoc on our network.

The problem started because my husband's "office" is in a separate outbuilding about 30 steps from the main house. With his old laptop he always got enough of a signal out there to do his work, but with the SP3, he could not maintain a stable connection.

Everything always worked great with our old Buffalo router with an upgraded antenna and tomato firmware. But we took the plunge and got a new 5g AC router thinking it would give us better range. It didn't. :( Long story short, we took the old Buffalo router and set up both routers using WDS with the new Alfa router as the primary, and the Buffalo as the client. Unfortunately it only works with 2 different SSIDs and no security on the extension node (Buffalo).

Since then it has been trouble trouble trouble. I hate the firmware on the Alfa (based on OpenWRT, I think). If I set static IPs for the devices thru the router, they can't get internet. Any large uploads send the network into a tizzy, even causing rebuffering in the squeezeboxes playing local music. I am constantly having to reboot the router, the modem, players, and LMS. Every time I turn on a Squeezebox there's a 50% chance it won't play anything until I go through the whole rebooting rigmarole. Sometimes one of the players will be happily playing along for 20 or 30 minutes and then just stop. Then I find out it has randomly latched on to the unsecured extension SSID, or disappeared off the network altogether.

I tried swapping the primary and extension routers and that didn't work out either. Then I found a used buffalo router just like our old one with tomato already installed on it. I thought, "perfect! WDS should work with
both routers identical!" I snatched it up, but no joy. The only way I can get WDS Working between them is with no security at all. So that's no good.

Im losing my mind here! I hate silence! But I've reached my limit on what to do. I'm not a networking wiz. Piled on top of that is my husband is a cheapskate who doesn't give two hoots about the squeezeboxes. As far as he's concerned I should just use a Bluetooth speaker with my phone or iPad.

What can I do? The squeezeboxes were rock solid before we got this crap router.

DJanGo
2016-06-12, 21:40
hi,

without some schema of your setup its a nightmare to read and unpossible to help.

eg static ip ? which, what gateway, which subnet 3 routers - more info

Spin
2016-06-13, 02:33
Hi Sue,

Why don't you go back to the original (working) setup and then use a pair of powerline network adaptors between the house and the outbuilding ?

Cheers,

Steve

epoch1970
2016-06-13, 03:47
I would avoid the WDS thing and trying to extend wifi coverage though wifi itself. Ethernet or powerline are a much better solution.

My advice would be to replace the APs with 2 Airport Express APs. If you have a mac, win PC or an iThing in the house you can manage them.
The current model is not very recent, it's not AC but dual radio G/N and sufficient for uncompressed audio or HD video streaming. You can have them at discount price, refurb price is ~50 USD which makes it a good value, plus they offer Airplay.

I have setup a 4-AE + powerline system in a large home, and it "just works". One SSID, one password, and most clients I have tested seem happy to roam from one AP to an other when they are moved around the house (with an iPad a running video stream, stream will pause for about 1 sec and restart when changing AP.)
In this setup one of the 4 AEs is set to router mode. It works fine in this role too, but firewalling settings are minimal and it doesn't manage a local DNS service, only mDNS.

I have fiddled with OpenWRT and Tomato in the past, all my attempts at setting up multiple APs (to be fair: using similar but not identical devices) have failed. Fiddly, and when it "worked" it never provided a convincing advantage over a single AP setup. The Airport Express is simplistic, but in multiple AP mode, it's simply night and day.

my 2cts

MeSue
2016-06-13, 07:30
Thanks for the responses. I will run these ideas by him and look into the Airport Express. I use power line adapters successfully within the house, but we have tried them in the outbuilding before and he says they don't work out there. Anytime I suggest power line for out there, he refuses to even consider it.

DJanGo
2016-06-13, 08:51
again...

I each got new Microsoft Surface Pro tablet computers. Nice machines... We like them. But this has wrecked havoc on our network.

thats "normal" cause their internal antenna(s) cant be really good.


The problem started because my husband's "office" is in a separate outbuilding about 30 steps from the main house.
When the two buildings dont got the same electric meter - forget about connecting these builings with Powerline. You may connect the two routers over powerline in one building - but they didnt really work over electric meters.



If I set static IPs for the devices thru the router, they can't get internet. Any large uploads send the network into a tizzy, even causing rebuffering in the squeezeboxes playing local music

That pretty much told me - no gateway or dns is set when you do the static thing and a massive false configuration - thats why i asked for facts.

ip
subnet
gateway
dns

tcutting
2016-06-13, 15:36
It would still help if you could provide some form of diagram of your setup.

Also, is the wifi router located in the house as near as possible to the office/outbuilding? (to get the best chance of getting a strong enough signal out there)

Any way to run an ethernet cable to the office?

I've had reasonable success running two wireless routers. Primary one has all the main settings enabled (e.g., configured to provide the dynamic addressing, with a range of dynamic addresses, and left a separate range of addresses which I use form Static addressing). The second router is at the other end of the house - the two are connected together via wired ethernet. The second router does NOT perform the dynamic address allocation, it is only a wifi hotspot. I did, however, configure both wifi routers to use the same SSID and password. Generally a device will connect to one or the other - but "roaming" isn't handled particularly well - if I move to the other end of the house, a device will tend to stay connected to the one it originally connected to, even though the second device now has a much stronger signal). If you're OK having two separate wireless networks, you could configure the two hotspots with separate SSIDs and passwords, and then just connect a particular device to one or the other. BUT make sure they are not BOTH trying to provide the dynamic IP configuration.

garym
2016-06-13, 17:22
It would still help if you could provide some form of diagram of your setup.

Also, is the wifi router located in the house as near as possible to the office/outbuilding? (to get the best chance of getting a strong enough signal out there)

Any way to run an ethernet cable to the office?

I've had reasonable success running two wireless routers. Primary one has all the main settings enabled (e.g., configured to provide the dynamic addressing, with a range of dynamic addresses, and left a separate range of addresses which I use form Static addressing). The second router is at the other end of the house - the two are connected together via wired ethernet. The second router does NOT perform the dynamic address allocation, it is only a wifi hotspot. I did, however, configure both wifi routers to use the same SSID and password. Generally a device will connect to one or the other - but "roaming" isn't handled particularly well - if I move to the other end of the house, a device will tend to stay connected to the one it originally connected to, even though the second device now has a much stronger signal). If you're OK having two separate wireless networks, you could configure the two hotspots with separate SSIDs and passwords, and then just connect a particular device to one or the other. BUT make sure they are not BOTH trying to provide the dynamic IP configuration.

This is exactly what I do. the 2nd wifi router has all settings to hand out IP addresses turned off. And it is connected via ethernet back to my main router (note that the "2nd wifi router" is connected to ethernet by pluging the cable into one of the "regular" ethernet slots on the "2nd router"--do not plug anything into the 2nd router's plug where one would typically route the plug coming from the modem itself; this is sometimes labeled "internet" on the router, indicating a connection to modem that provides the internet connection). I also use same SSID and password for both routers.

rkrug
2016-06-14, 01:10
garym <garym.7ha25z (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> writes:

> tcutting wrote:
>> It would still help if you could provide some form of diagram of your
>> setup.
>>
>> Also, is the wifi router located in the house as near as possible to the
>> office/outbuilding? (to get the best chance of getting a strong enough
>> signal out there)
>>
>> Any way to run an ethernet cable to the office?
>>
>> I've had reasonable success running two wireless routers. Primary one
>> has all the main settings enabled (e.g., configured to provide the
>> dynamic addressing, with a range of dynamic addresses, and left a
>> separate range of addresses which I use form Static addressing). The
>> second router is at the other end of the house - the two are connected
>> together via wired ethernet. The second router does NOT perform the
>> dynamic address allocation, it is only a wifi hotspot. I did, however,
>> configure both wifi routers to use the same SSID and password.
>> Generally a device will connect to one or the other - but "roaming"
>> isn't handled particularly well - if I move to the other end of the
>> house, a device will tend to stay connected to the one it originally
>> connected to, even though the second device now has a much stronger
>> signal). If you're OK having two separate wireless networks, you could
>> configure the two hotspots with separate SSIDs and passwords, and then
>> just connect a particular device to one or the other. BUT make sure
>> they are not BOTH trying to provide the dynamic IP configuration.
>
> This is exactly what I do. the 2nd wifi router has all settings to hand
> out IP addresses turned off. And it is connected via ethernet back to
> my main router (note that the "2nd wifi router" is connected to ethernet
> by pluging the cable into one of the "regular" ethernet slots on the
> "2nd router"--do not plug anything into the 2nd router's plug where one
> would typically route the plug coming from the modem itself; this is
> sometimes labeled "internet" on the router, indicating a connection to
> modem that provides the internet connection). I also use same SSID and
> password for both routers.
>

Unfortunately I have to use different SSID, and the extender (Netgear
WN2500RP) is connected via wireless to a Netgear WNDR 3400 which in turn
connects to my router via ethernet (provided by isp) which is doing all
the work (dhcp).

Works perfectly.

Rainer
>
>
> *Home:* VortexBox 4TB (2.3) > LMS 7.8 > Transporter, Touch, Boom, Radio
> (all ethernet)
> *Cottage:* VBA 3TB (2.3) > LMS 7.8 > Touch > Benchmark DAC I, Boom,
> Radio w/Battery (all ethernet except Radio)
> *Office:* Win8(64) > LMS 7.9 > Squeezelite
> *Spares:* Touch(3), Radio(3), Boom, SB3, CONTROLLER
> *Controllers:* iPhone6 & iPadAir2 (iPeng8 & Squeezepad), CONTROLLER, or
> SqueezePlay 7.8 on Win7(64) laptop
> *Files:* ripping: dbpoweramp > FLAC; post-rip: mp3tag, PerfectTunes;
> Streaming: Spotify
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> garym's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=17325
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=105743
>
>

MeSue
2016-06-15, 09:37
Hi again,

Sorry I haven't had time to write up a better explanation with diagrams and all. :(

Unfortunately Ethernet out to the other building isn't workable. Our house is all wood pine tongue and groove cabin-like construction and running ethernet through the walls is out of the question. Walls, ceiling floors, are all wood and he won't drill through it. The up-side is wireless signal transmits pretty good through walls. It's just the outbuilding that is on the fringes.

I'm really not sure why powerline doesn't work because they are on the same meter box.

Is there something else I can try that will work between the two identical routers that isn't using WDS?

Does the Airport Express extend Wifi from a 3rd party router or it is supposed to replace the primary router handing the WAN connection? I noticed it only has 2 ethernet ports.

This Alfa router we are using now is such garbage! Keeps dropping the internet connection. I am desperate to get it out of the equation.

toby10
2016-06-15, 10:28
......

I'm really not sure why powerline doesn't work because they are on the same meter box..

Same meter doesn't necessarily mean the same circuit. Where I live one meter serves a typical 2 circuit house, some houses have 3 circuits or more on a single meter. Sounds like the circuit where your router is located and your outbuilding are definitely two different circuits (and makes sense).

MeSue
2016-08-17, 10:42
I thought I would post a follow-up here. I had a couple of good months of book sales, so I decided to just throw money at the problem since I don't really have the time or brain power to try and figure out this stuff anymore. :p I got the Netgear Tri-Band router AC3200 and have had it up for almost a week. It has the range to cover our property very well, and reaches out into the outbuilding where my husband works without any range extender. I have got all my players back to static IPs and everything is much more stable.

I do still have a problem where every couple of days a Squeezebox player will go silent, often right in the middle of a song. I'm not sure why this is happening. Sometimes I can get it going again by pressing skip/off/on and such until it starts playing again. But usually it is faster just to restart LMS on the server and lose my playlist.

Fizbin
2016-08-17, 16:32
I don't know anything about networking but I do have one question for you. You say "every couple of days a squeezebox player will go silent". Is it the same player (if so which one) or a random one?

MeSue
2016-08-18, 08:05
I don't know anything about networking but I do have one question for you. You say "every couple of days a squeezebox player will go silent". Is it the same player (if so which one) or a random one?

Different ones, randomly.

d6jg
2016-08-18, 13:52
I have a customer who has "issues" with his wifi and Surface Pro machines. Basically if he connects his Surface Pro to the normal work network it floods the network in such a way as to make it unusable for anyone else.
We solved the issue with a workaround that has a second SSID purely for his use with the Surface Pro.
We are using high end routers that will support multiple SSIDs. I am not familiar with the Netgear you mention but most routers at that level do multiple SSIDs these days.
Might be worth a try.

PS Fizbin is telling the truth. He doesn't know anything about networking.

Fizbin
2016-08-18, 14:38
PS Fizbin is telling the truth. He doesn't know anything about networking.

That's it. You're not going to see that log now.

:)

d6jg
2016-08-18, 14:59
That's it. You're going to see that log now.

I am teasing :)

Fizbin
2016-08-18, 15:13
So am I. There was supposed to be a smiley there. Somehow it got left on the cutting room floor.



EDIT... And it was supposed to say "You're not going to see that log now". ;)

garym
2016-08-18, 16:44
I have a customer who has "issues" with his wifi and Surface Pro machines. Basically if he connects his Surface Pro to the normal work network it floods the network in such a way as to make it unusable for anyone else.
We solved the issue with a workaround that has a second SSID purely for his use with the Surface Pro.
We are using high end routers that will support multiple SSIDs. I am not familiar with the Netgear you mention but most routers at that level do multiple SSIDs these days.
Might be worth a try.

PS Fizbin is telling the truth. He doesn't know anything about networking.

or it likely has a regular network and a guest network. the surface pro could use the guest network for example.

MeSue
2016-08-21, 06:49
I have a customer who has "issues" with his wifi and Surface Pro machines. Basically if he connects his Surface Pro to the normal work network it floods the network in such a way as to make it unusable for anyone else.
We solved the issue with a workaround that has a second SSID purely for his use with the Surface Pro.
We are using high end routers that will support multiple SSIDs. I am not familiar with the Netgear you mention but most routers at that level do multiple SSIDs these days.
Might be worth a try.

PS Fizbin is telling the truth. He doesn't know anything about networking.

Interesting. I will look into that.

RonM
2016-08-21, 07:54
Just for context, I have a Surface 4 Pro that is used via wifi all the time (not my main computer, but used for things like this forum just now, as well as some substantial downloads and video), and have never had any problems with the networking. Network reach doesn't seem any worse than with my previous devices, although I have invested in an Asus N660U dual band router, that is more robust with further reach than the (many) other routers I've used.

R.

MeSue
2016-08-21, 19:28
Too soon to be meaningful, but yesterday I switched don't stop the music to use LastMix instead of Music IP and haven't had problems since.

I've always had problems with any kind of automatic mixes that involve MIP, although it works fine if I manually trigger a mix. Thought taking it out of the equation was worth trying.

Getting much better mixes, too.

MeSue
2016-08-30, 19:18
Well the new router massively improved our range, so it was not a total waste, but the squeezebox situation is no better. At least once a day one of the players will get into dummy state where it won't play anything and won't respond to any button presses until I restart LMS. It does not seem to be wifi related because it happens with the Ethernet connected one, too. I am out of ideas... Really don't want to reinstall LMS.

mherger
2016-08-30, 21:06
> Well the new router massively improved our range, so it was not a total
> waste, but the squeezebox situation is no better. At least once a day
> one of the players will get into dummy state where it won't play
> anything and won't respond to any button presses until I restart LMS. It

Did you ever check your server.log file? What kind of SB? Always the same?

--

Michael

MeSue
2016-09-06, 07:12
> Well the new router massively improved our range, so it was not a total
> waste, but the squeezebox situation is no better. At least once a day
> one of the players will get into dummy state where it won't play
> anything and won't respond to any button presses until I restart LMS. It

Did you ever check your server.log file? What kind of SB? Always the same?

No. I forgot all about that. I will next time. The players are 1 Touch, 6 Radios, and 1 Boom which is rarely used. I unplugged one Radio that it seemed to be happening to a lot and it hasn't happened as often. Now it's happening every 2-3 days instead of 1-2 times a day. Aaaaannnd... I think it just happened as I was typing this.

MeSue
2016-09-06, 07:38
The server log is full of errors relating to MusicIP. I disabled it and will see what happens.

d6jg
2016-09-06, 08:59
The server log is full of errors relating to MusicIP. I disabled it and will see what happens.

I gather you are running LMS on an HP Proliant Microserver but you don't say anywhere what platform. The sort of issues you are reporting suggest problems with LMS itself as they get resolved (temporarily) by a reboot.

Have you considered moving LMS (not the music files themselves) to a Raspberry Pi 3 running PiCorePlayer ? In the US you can pick one up for $30-40.
It is very simple and you don't even need to uninstall or switch off LMS on the HP while you get it all going. You just need to be able to point the Pi at the HP's files via SMB/CIFS or (if you want to be esoteric) NFS.

I read your blog posts. LMS on a Pi is easily within your ability even if you have zero Linux skills as it is all configured via a browser. You would need to connect the Pi by ethernet to your network - wifi works but ....

Lots have moved from LMS on a NAS to a LMS on a Pi + NAS and found that all their Spotify connection problems have gone with the added benefit that they can now easily upgrade LMS without waiting for the NAS manufacturers to release a new compatible package.

Mnyb
2016-09-07, 13:13
Years MIP can create issues when trying tomcuenup tracks , it has some settings it can hog resources .

Btw the microservers are quite open , you can run whatever OS you like , it's basically an intell atom PC in NAS like cabinet , but does not have the NAS problems of weird bespoke OS with some part of Linux removed and weird setup in general .

d6jg
2016-09-07, 14:21
Years MIP can create issues when trying tomcuenup tracks , it has some settings it can hog resources .

Btw the microservers are quite open , you can run whatever OS you like , it's basically an intell atom PC in NAS like cabinet , but does not have the NAS problems of weird bespoke OS with some part of Linux removed and weird setup in general .

I know about HP Microservers thanks. We run a couple. Hence the question as to what it was running. When I said platform I meant OS. More than likely it's the OS combined with LMS that's the issue.

MeSue
2016-09-10, 15:03
I gather you are running LMS on an HP Proliant Microserver but you don't say anywhere what platform. The sort of issues you are reporting suggest problems with LMS itself as they get resolved (temporarily) by a reboot.

Have you considered moving LMS (not the music files themselves) to a Raspberry Pi 3 running PiCorePlayer ? In the US you can pick one up for $30-40.
It is very simple and you don't even need to uninstall or switch off LMS on the HP while you get it all going. You just need to be able to point the Pi at the HP's files via SMB/CIFS or (if you want to be esoteric) NFS.

I read your blog posts. LMS on a Pi is easily within your ability even if you have zero Linux skills as it is all configured via a browser. You would need to connect the Pi by ethernet to your network - wifi works but ....

Lots have moved from LMS on a NAS to a LMS on a Pi + NAS and found that all their Spotify connection problems have gone with the added benefit that they can now easily upgrade LMS without waiting for the NAS manufacturers to release a new compatible package.

Yeah, sorry... it's Windows Home Server 2010. It seems like every couple of years it all goes kerflukey and needs a clean install. Since removing MusicIP it was good all week until today when I had to restart the service.

I'll keep the RaspberryPi in mind, but since the server performs a lot of other functions in our household, I'd just as soon keep it on there.

MeSue
2016-11-27, 07:23
Purely by chance, this seems to be resolved. My theory is that it was all caused by a bad ethernet port on the one and only radio I had connected by Ethernet. I moved some Radios around to different areas of the house, and all has been working great since then. No changes to the server software at all.

Longer explanation: During hurricane Matthew I had unplugged some radios. When we got power back and I plugged them back in, the radio in my kitchen which was connected by ethernet got into a weird state where it was showing both on squeezebox.com and the local server, but I could not get it to play anything. I could navigate menus and control it from iPeng, but no sound would come out. Finally I just disconnected it and set it aside. I put a different Radio in its place and after a couple weeks I realized I wasn't having problems like I had been before. Later, I decided to try the faulty Radio in another location on wifi, and it has been working fine like that.

So so perhaps the Ethernet port was starting to fail prior to the hurricane and all the power surges from that were the final nail in the coffin. We had it unplugged from power, but left it connected to Ethernet via power line adapter during the hurricane. The power line adapter was not affected. It's still in use.

MeSue
2017-01-20, 23:16
Well this is so incredibly stupid but I'm posting it here for my future self because I'm likely to forget this by the next time it happens.

My weird recurring kitchen radio problem seems to be caused by the fact that the power plug does not fit tight in the outlet. After several weeks of door slamming on the same wall with the outlet, the wall plug gets to where it's barely plugged in and because it is under a cabinet it's not easy to see that it's loose. I'm surprised anything worked at all given how it was.

I might need to retire my geek beanie.

garym
2017-01-21, 11:28
Well this is so incredibly stupid but I'm posting it here for my future self because I'm likely to forget this by the next time it happens.

My weird recurring kitchen radio problem seems to be caused by the fact that the power plug does not fit tight in the outlet. After several weeks of door slamming on the same wall with the outlet, the wall plug gets to where it's barely plugged in and because it is under a cabinet it's not easy to see that it's loose. I'm surprised anything worked at all given how it was.

I might need to retire my geek beanie.

I feel your pain. The little things are always the worst.