Airport Extreme bridge mode question

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by thekb, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. thekb macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2010
    My setup, I have DSL service with a modem connected via ethernet to my Airport Extreme, which provides wifi to my house.

    My Airport Extreme has always given me an error message of sorts: Double NAT, and seemed to be recommending that I switch to bridge mode. I am ignorant about routers and never did it. I've always had poor signal strength.

    Tonight, I tried switching to bridge mode and it seems to have improved my range. Is this a placebo effect and the two are unrelated? Also, previously when I had DHCP ad NAT turned on, it listed all the devices connected to my wifi by name. Now it only lists the MAC addresses, which are of course, cryptic.

    Should I leave bridge mode enabled? It seems to have improved internet connection. What are the disadvantages to that?
  2. apunkrockmonk macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2005
    Rochester, NY
    Bridge mode would not effect your WiFi signal strength.

    Essentially if you have a double NAT situation you're just making it harder for incoming connections to get to the right place. Shouldn't really make a difference for web browsing. It's more likely to cause issues with VoIP and online gaming.

    The device you've received from your ISP is most likely a far inferior router than your Airport.

    I'd look into finding a way to put the gateway from your ISP into bridge mode if it has the capability and leaving the NAT enabled on your Airport. Once again shouldn't effect your WiFi signal but it has the chance of making your network more robust.
  3. drsox macrumors 65816


    Apr 29, 2011
    I would leave it in bridge mode as Airport Utility usually knows what is required (that's what it's telling you to do). Your modem is actually a router and a modem. If you leave the AE bridge mode, then your downside is that you can't use the AE for DHCP reservations (you might be able to use the modem/router for this).

    Is there a problem with any part of your network ? Is Internet access working fine for all devices ?
    If no problems, leave it alone. If there are problems, reverse the modes and get the modem to operate only as a modem.

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