[UPDATE 11/feb/2012:] After having to reset my Netgear router, I found out that my solution for accessing the Web Administration Interface doesn’t work. I think it has something to do with the fact that the router is no longer on DHCP mode, or that there is a bug when combining the Access Point mode and the WiFi trick described below. If by any chance you come across a solution for accessing this Web Interface, please let me know on the comments or tweet me. Thanks!
Hi! Today’s post is not so much of a standard reading. It is more of a high-tech troubleshooting sequence for people like me, who have trouble configuring their Netgear WGR614 Wireless Router – mine is V5, if it is somehow relevant to you.
I have decided to publish this post mainly because I consider the Netgear support page to lack some information, and I wanted to add some of my own experience with this device on forums, but most discussions I wanted to participate to have been shut a while ago.
Another reason regards the lack of information for Mac users. Indeed, there are many MS-DOS commands for Windows PCs, but not that much for Mac, especially the ones to avoid getting the Setup Wizard / Assistant to configure your connection – totally useless if you want to setup your Netgear Router as an Access Point, although you may have to let it configure and fail the setup to access the Router’s Basic Settings page.
So, what I wanted to share here is a somehow common issue amongst this device’s users:
1. Making it an access point (AP) within a home network;
2. Making the WiFi work in the Netgear router in AP mode;
3. Get to the Web Administration Interface (WAI) of the Netgear Router in AP mode.
Remember to always use ethernet connection to setup your router, being on WiFi can ban your access to the settings page if you modify stuff like ports or WiFi settings. Also, avoid plugging your Netgear router to the internet before finishing all the setup.
1. Setting the WGR614 as an access point (AP)
To use your Netgear wireless router as an Access Point, the Netgear tutorial works pretty fine, take a look over here. Basically, you must remember to avoid using the WAN ethernet port – “Internet Port”. In order to work as an Access Point, the router needs to get the connection through a LAN port. This router has 4 of them, choose the one you like – although I prefer using the n°1, keeps things clear. At the end of this setup, your “i” – Internet – LED indicator will never blink, it has been replaced by the LAN ethernet port you chose – i.e. “1”, for me. Now you can plug to the “2”, “3” and “4” ports for ethernet Internet access.
If you have trouble entering the Web Administrator Interface, and the Welcome page keeps popping up no matter what, enter this address on your browser: http://www.routerlogin.com/basicsetting.htm . This issue is developed further below.
Of course, since you have changed the IP address of your router, you will now have to use the new address to access the Web Administration Interface – “http://192.168.1.XX”, where XX is the address you chose, 99 for me. It’s weird, but sometimes I have been able to stay connected to the WAI without having to log again through the “http://192.168.1.XX” address.
2. Making the WiFi work in Access Point mode
Now, some people have had trouble after this step, especially as regards WiFi activation – this issue may also appear when you reset your router with the small button at the back, next to the WiFi antenna.
For this troubleshooting sequence, I got a lot of help from this Whirlpool forum – which unfortunately is closed for further answers, hence the post you are reading. This forum basically explains how to activate your WiFi if you ever come across this specific issue: your WiFi settings are set to “on”, but the LED indicator is off, and you cannot get any WiFi signal.
Just like BlackCat in the forum, I inserted a fake IP address for the router in the Basic Settings page, which magically does the trick – “http://192.168.1.YY”, where YY is the number you chose, 90, 91… just pick! Put the same address for DNS, and “255.255.255.0” for Subnet mask. If that does not work immediately, wait a little, the turn of the router – unplug the power AC adapter – and restart your computer.
Remember that you are now accessing the Web through your Netgear Router, but your modem (the other device) is the one giving access to the Internet and attributing IP addresses to your computers. Under this configuration, you will have access to your modem settings – i.e. the other device’s, not the Netgear Router’s. The Netgear Router Web Administration Interface (WAI) will get hard to access from here.
3. Get to the Web Administration Interface of the Netgear Router in AP mode
[UPDATE 11/feb/2012:] Troubleshooting: if you ever have trouble accessing this interface at all, and you are redirected to the Welcome/Autosetting page, just enter the following address on your browser: http://www.routerlogin.com/basicsetting.htm . In fact, you simply override the Welcome page. Netgear offers a solution to disable this page, but it’s for PCs only, and even on a PC, I couldn’t make it work.
Finally, getting to this WAI is kind of tricky. Indeed, the “http://192.168.1.XX” address redirects to the web address “http://www.routerlogin.com/Welcome.htm” – or “http://www.routerlogin.com/basicsetting.htm”, a standard Web page that you cannot access, since your modem – the other device – tries to access it from the Internet, and you are indeed trying to access data inside your Netgear Router. So, to solve this, there is a workaround: you have to manually set your computer’s IP address – “http://192.168.1.ZZ”, try to avoid replacing the “ZZ” with an address already attributed to another computer, I chose 49. Then replace the IP address in the “router/modem” case with the Netgear Router one – the one you chose when you made it an Access Point “http://192.168.1.XX”, here 99. Subnet mask can stay the same, “255.255.255.0”.
Then, unplug the ethernet cable that links the modem and the Netgear Router – I’m not sure that this is necessary, but it worked doing it. Finally, type your Netgear Router’s IP address – again, the one you chose to make it an AP – in your Web browser. You are good to go!
I have had some trouble getting back inside here, even following these steps, so be patient, the Netgear Router gets slow sometimes, freezes, unfreezes, lingers… be patient!
Remember to set your computer’s back on DHCP automatic mode, if necessary unplug the ethernet cable – or turn off WiFi – to get Internet access again.
That should settle the main issues that I and many others have come across when trying to use the Netgear WGR614 Wireless Router as an Access Point, with WiFi, and still be able to access the Web settings page. Do not hesitate to contact me if you ever get stuck or find that some point needs further explanation! Everything should be there, though, just read this post, the Netgear support page and the Whirlpool forum carefully.