Slow connection using PPPoE over Airport Express

Narial Taster

macrumors member
Original poster
May 17, 2011
35
2
I recently got a new 100 Mbps Internet connection and am super excited about it as it is significantly faster than the one it replaces. However, it's been over a month and despite tinkering with various settings I am unable to get it to work at its full speed over WiFi with my Airport Express, which gives me speeds of around 2 Mbps. I was able to configure the connection without any issues and created a wireless network using PPPoE. I can connect to the Internet without any issues as well, just not at the speed that I should be getting. I have verified that the problem is not with the ISP as I get speeds of around 70 Mbps when I connect the ethernet cable directly to a computer. The ISP technician brought a cheap TP Link router to check the connection and was able to get speeds of around 20 Mbps on it. I thought that there might be a hardware issue with my Airport Express and so tested the connection with another Airport Express but they performed identically. I am sure that the issue is related to settings and would greatly appreciate help in solving it.

The way the connection is setup is that a fiber cable runs to my office, goes into a fiber to ethernet converter, and the ethernet cable plugs into my Airport Express. There is no modem/router except for the Airport Express at my end of the connection. I've read various posts on this and other forums and wonder if this might be an issue to do with double NAT. I tried changing the Radio Mode and channels on the Airport Express and while this increased speeds a couple of times (they fluctuated between 10 Mbps to 20 Mbps, instead of the usual 2 Mbps) I wasn't able to replicate these results and so doubt that is the case. I don't understand why the speed spiked for three to four successive tests when I switched over to this band one afternoon and why I'm not able to replicate this again. Also, if channel interference was the issue then switching to the 5GHz band, which isn't used by any of my neighbors, should fix it but switching to this band doesn't change anything.

Here are my Airport Express settings, in case they can help shed light on the issue. Again, thanks for your help in looking into this.

Base Station

Default settings, Allow setup over WAN is unchecked

Internet
Connect Using: PPPoE (Account Name and Password provided by the ISP. I've kept the Service Name blank)
IPv4 Address: 115.118.74.208
Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.255
Router Address: 192.168.1.224
DNS Servers: 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4

Internet Options

PPPoE Connection: Always On
Configure IPv6: Link-local only (Use dynamic global hostname is unchecked)

Wireless
Network Mode: Create a wireless network

Wireless Options

Country: United States (I am in India but that isn't one of the options)
Radio Mode: 802.11n (802.11 b/g compatible)
Radio Channel: 3 (this was set to automatic but as I explained earlier Channel 3 gave me a speed boost once and so I have kept it)

Network

Router Mode: DHCP and NAT (grayed out)
DHCP Range: 10.0.1.2 to 10.0.1.200
Enable Access Control: Unchecked

Network Options

DHCP Lease: 1 day
IPv4 DHCP Range: 10.0.1.2 to 200
Enable NAT Port Mapping Protocol is checked
Enable default host at is unchecked
 

Narial Taster

macrumors member
Original poster
May 17, 2011
35
2
Try rolling back to firmware 7.6.1. It sometimes is more reliable with PPPoE connections in my experience.
Thanks for the tip, Altemose. Can't wait to try it when I go to work tomorrow! Do all the other settings look ok though?
 

Narial Taster

macrumors member
Original poster
May 17, 2011
35
2
For the most part... The "Router Address" is a private IP so I am wondering where the Express is getting that IP from.
Hmmm... I thought I'd also follow some of the tips from this post (steps 1, 2 and 4) as I reckon they can't hurt. As an aside, I've been mostly unsuccessful at attempting a Factory default reset. I get the amber light to blink rapidly but often the old profile is still on the AirPort. I then need to resort to Restore Default Settings from AirPort Utility.

I'll try these steps and get back to you. Thanks a ton for your help.
 

Altemose

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2013
9,171
479
Elkton, Maryland
I wonder if the Express potentially is damaged and only negotiating a 10 Mbps speed over Ethernet. If the crimping on the cable or the port contacts are damaged then it will not receive full 100 Mbps. If I were in your shoes, I would sell off that Express and purchase a newer router.
 

Narial Taster

macrumors member
Original poster
May 17, 2011
35
2
I wonder if the Express potentially is damaged and only negotiating a 10 Mbps speed over Ethernet. If the crimping on the cable or the port contacts are damaged then it will not receive full 100 Mbps. If I were in your shoes, I would sell off that Express and purchase a newer router.
I replaced the Express with a TP-Link router and now the Internet is blazing fast. Thanks for your help.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.