airport express problem working as wifi extenders wired

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by derjuden1, Aug 4, 2016.

  1. derjuden1 macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2016
    I have TW cable for internet set in bridge mode and not acting as a DHCP server. This is directly connected to the WAN port of an airport extreme time capsule (1-2 years old). The time capsule has a connection to 16 port 10/100 netgear switch from one of its LAN ports. About 3 weeks ago I added 2 new airport expresses to extended the wifi range of my very large house. I ran hard lines to the airport expresses as well. Each express is set to bridge mode and just to extend the wifi network. The extreme time capsule is the DHCP server. Everything works fine as long as the expresses pair to the extreme over wifi, but doing this does not fix my range and speed issues on the far side of the house that the expresses are installed to cover.

    Problem: When the airport expresses are not hard wired I get a sub 5ms ping from a computer on the local network to the expresses and the extreme. Once I plug either one of them into the hard wired network my ping times to all devices are very erratic. Once in a while they are in the 1-10ms range but most often they are in the 1-2 second and time out range. Once I disconnect either one from the hard line the ping times return to normal within 5 seconds.

    Troubleshooting attempted so far: Again I connected either one of the expresses to hard line problem occurs. Disconnect it and connect the other same thing. Connect one of them directly to the airport extreme again same thing. Connect the express directly to a PC and ran ping test, sub 1ms response times and no change to the rest of devices. Connected ethernet to the WAN port of the expresses instead of the LAN port same issue. Repunched and re did the end of the cable used for one of them, same issue. Called Apple and was told this should work and provided no additional troubleshooting.

    Firmware on all devices were updated about 3 weeks ago after I got them stable over the wifi. Unfortunately I don't have the version written down, but they are all on the same version now. All devices have a green light on them when just using wifi to talk to the extreme. When hardwired in the airport utility the devices drop off the GUI and come back and are intermittently accessible.

    Whats left to test that i can think of: Replace the airport extreme time capsule. Replace the expresses. Wipe the network completely and start over from scratch with a full factory reset.

    Any help would be appreciated, I am dumbfounded as to why this is not working.
  2. Hilbert92 macrumors member


    May 21, 2015
    I have also had some problems with my express being used as an "access point" in the same manner. I finally have a reliable network after trying about 100 times of resetting them to factory. Keep trying and once its working just leave it alone. once you change a setting its possible it wont work again until resetting the full system.
  3. komatsu macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2010
    You could just get a powerline adaptor and connect one of your AE devices into it.

    So it would be EXTREME --connected to--> Powerline --connected to ---> Airport Express

    Zyxel make some good Powerline kit...avoid Belkin, Netgear etc.
  4. JonasCalhoun macrumors member

    Aug 26, 2012
    What modes are you operating the Expresses in? When wired, you should have it as 'join a network', when wireless, 'extend a network'. I've had issues with 'extend a network' when it's hardwired on the previous model expresses, Apple told me to change the mode. Been rock solid ever since.
  5. Undecided macrumors 6502a

    Mar 4, 2005
    I have this setup at home too. My home is smaller, so I have the 5th gen time capsule as my primary router (connected to the cable modem) and a 1st gen time capsule acting as a AP and NAS, wired into the 5th gen TC.

    Check out:

    Extend the wifi network is wireless only; in other words, for where the AP is not wired into your network. For an Airport wired into your network that you want to use as an AP, be sure to set the router mode to off (bridge mode), and set wireless to "create a network." Use the same wireless network name as your other APs, change the channel to a non-overlapping channel (unless it's really far from other APs), and use the same password as all your other APs. All your APs should have the same network name and password, and be set to create a network, with secondary APs set to bridge mode.

    Works like a charm.
  6. Altemose macrumors G3


    Mar 26, 2013
    Elkton, Maryland
    Why would OP go buy a powerline adapter when he or she already has Ethernet ran throughout the building?

    No. Those settings are only to be used when connecting to wireless networks.

    @derjuden1 Reset the Expresses and plug them into the network before configuring them. Remember to use the WAN port on the Expresses. AirPort Utility should guide you through setting them up, and remember to keep them connected once configured.

    The configuration should be set as: Under "Wireless" tab - Create a Wireless Network (Identical settings to main Extreme), Under "Network" tab - Network Mode OFF (Bridge Mode), and under "Internet" tab - DHCP.

    Verify these settings and report back with how yours are configured.

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