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ghamauricio
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[SOLVED] Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - 5GHz not transmitting, general random disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 5:07 am

Hello guys,

So after so much fiddling, I think I kinda got my LAN to work. Here's a brief description of topology:
ISP fibre modem connected into RB4011iGS+5HacQ2HnD-IN (let's call this Router).
Router connects to cable on port 10, cable goes through the floor/wall (unfortunately this cable is limiting the connection to 100mbps - I think it might be the keystones), then connects into another RB4011iGS+5HacQ2HnD-IN (let's call this one AP) on port 1 (PoE).
All computers in the house are connected to AP.

So I wanted to make a cabled wireless extension where the AP would also work as a switch.
Router was bought before and was working fine, DHCP leases setup and all. When AP arrived in the mail, I decided to try and use it as an extender.

Long story short, Router is set to Mesh (complaint: Mikrotik's Wiki says):
From https://wiki.mikrotik.com/wiki/Manual:Quickset
"Home Mesh: Made for making bigger WiFi networks. Enables the CAPsMAN server in the router, and places the local WiFi interfaces under CAPsMAN control. Just boot other MikroTik WiFi APs with the reset button pressed, and they will join this HomeMesh network (see their Quick guide for details)"
Never found the so called "Quick guide" for details on HomeMesh.

Had to enable CAPsMAN discovery on CAPsMAN itself (used the address as 127.0.0.1, but I know I could've used the port - though I always confuse myself which port, bridge or some ether). Hey Mikrotik, I think we have the first "bug" here.

Tried to enable AP as CAP through Winbox's Quickset. No "automatic connecting" to CAPsMAN.
Turned it on holding reset button. No "automatic connecting" to CAPsMAN.
Turned it on holding reset button until it blinked. No "automatic connecting" to CAPsMAN.
Connected through Winbox, told it to reset config and come back as CAP and it finally worked.
Hey Mikrotik, I think we have a second "bug" here.

Everything seemed to be working kinda fine. Then I decided to copy a huge file (18GB) into my NAS just to check if traffic wasn't unnecessarily passing through the bottleneck cable (since all computers are on the same switch).

And then I noticed it wouldn't finish copying the file. It halts somewhere, Winbox disconnects, and MacOS asks me to eject the network drive, and I don't really know what's going on.
I also noticed my WiFi reconnecting sometimes. Even disconnecting the WiFi and going only with the ethernet, same thing happens. It seems I'm getting random (and extremely frequent) disconnects/reconnects. Even my wife was complaining the internet wasn't working - and she was sitting next to "router", supposedly being served by it's Wi-Fi.

Fixed: plugged in the power supply. It seems an RB4011 doesn't have enough juice to power another RB4011 through PoE.


Only problem now is that 5GHz interfaces are not transmitting.[
They show up as italic in CAPsMAN Scanner window.
https://ibb.co/DG59Z8m

Fixed: (kinda; still can't scan) radios were transmitting in a channel my cellphone would not see. I had to manually find and define a few channels/frequencies, and now it transmits. They both transmit on the same channel though, which is kinda bummer, but at least it works.

Hey Mikrotik, I think we have a third "bug" here - CAPsMAN transmits in weird bands - but I recognize this one is relative/not really a bug/too difficult to solve.

Useful info (maybe): 1) I'm running two VMs with virtual ethernet interfaces through a single ethernet cable (one MacOS, one Windows 10). Each one gets their own IP from the router's DHCP. If I disconnect the physical cable, the guest VM doesn't indicate anything. I can try stuff from some baremetal laptop.
2) Upon logging into AP and opening up a terminal to export the config, I noticed some reboot messages. Plugged the power cord and decided to post [this thread] anyway and take some sleep. But out of curiosity: wouldn't it be possible for one RB4011 to power another one through PoE...? It's not even doing something taxing on the resources...
3) I'm kinda tired after spending most of my day trying to get this working, and I need some sleep. If someone has some suggestion on how to start troubleshooting, I'd be really glad!
4) Also downloading files through Winbox result in empty files. Hey Mikrotik, I think we have a fourth "bug" here.
5) Exported with "compact" option.
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Last edited by ghamauricio on Sun Mar 21, 2021 4:07 am, edited 6 times in total.
 
gotsprings
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 11:27 am

The default firewall allows connection of caps to caps-man if they are in the same layer 2.

I don't understand the use of the word "mesh" here.

Using a RB4011 as a cap? Would definitely go with a different vendor for wireless.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:44 pm

The default firewall allows connection of caps to caps-man if they are in the same layer 2.

I don't understand the use of the word "mesh" here.

Using a RB4011 as a cap? Would definitely go with a different vendor for wireless.
Aren't they supposed to be on the same layer 2 though? Didn't create VLANs or anything...

Mesh because I thought a mesh-mode would give me what I want. What would be the name of what I'm looking for? Not WDS I suppose.

As for the vendor, what vendor? Mikrotik, or Arrow/Qualcomm?
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:46 pm

Woke up this morning to my MacOS desktop saying there's a device using my IP.
Also, my phone is using an IP that was supposed to be outside the DHCP pool and reserved for some other device. 🤔
 
gotsprings
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 4:57 pm

Caps can connect to caps-managers over layer3 or VPNs.

Mesh is when you have one radio uplinking to the next and serving wireless clients WITHOUT A WIRED UPLINK.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 5:01 pm

Mesh is when you have one radio uplinking to the next and serving wireless clients WITHOUT A WIRED UPLINK.
OK, i see. Then what is it called when you want to make a single LAN, single SSID/Pass/auth, but using wires and the Ethernet ports available on the CAPs?

I tried CAPs (without the mesh quickset) and even though the Ethernet ports were bridged, they wouldn't work on the AP... 🤔
 
gotsprings
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 10:56 pm

Bridge
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Fri Mar 19, 2021 11:07 pm

Bridge
There's no "bridge" mode in quickset. Meaning I don't even know how to get started (since starting without some default quickset config, I can't connect to the AP without an IP address - I tried).
 
gotsprings
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 12:59 am

The wireless interfaces should bridge by default. But check the okrts under bridge and make sure the ports are included.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:10 am

They were, last time I tried (without setting the Router to Mesh).

Also I'm not able to get wlan1 (5GHz) to transmit in any of the devices. When I click on the CAPsMAN device (automatically created) and try to scan, it only works with 2.5GHz devices.
With 5GHz devices it says "Couldnt start. Can'not scan currently (6)". Also, 5GHz interfaces are in italic in "CAPsMAN Scanner" window.

I'm pulling my hairs out already!
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:22 am

Updated on OP: don't get random disconnects anymore since I plugged in the power supply - seems an RB4011 doesn't have enough juice to power another 4011 through PoE.
 
gotsprings
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:20 am

Never powered anything bigger than a wap or cap off the ether 10.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:38 am

Never powered anything bigger than a wap or cap off the ether 10.
If it comes with PoE in, there might be a way to use it...

Any suggestion on the 5GHz (or lack thereof) though?
 
anschluss
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:42 am

With 5GHz devices it says "Couldnt start. Can'not scan currently (6)". Also, 5GHz interfaces are in italic in "CAPsMAN Scanner" window.

Unless specifically set to avoid them, the 5GHz channels can only be legally used by the router after having scanned the spectrum for radar, which takes approximately five minutes longer than your patience lasts.
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 5:19 am

I don't get the free offense, the equipment has been running for a few hours since the last time I changed some setting already. After waiting, when I scan, it resets all CAPsMAN interfaces - and you guessed it, gives the same message.

But thanks for the free aggression.
 
mkx
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - frequent general disconnects

Sat Mar 20, 2021 12:49 pm

Never powered anything bigger than a wap or cap off the ether 10.
If it comes with PoE in, there might be a way to use it...

It's not the PoE in, it's PoE out. RB4011 has limit of 600mA output when voltage is less than 30V. If using power adapter shiped with unit (24V 1.5A), that means 14.4W available. Even without losses on cable that's less than rated power consumption (max 18W without attachments).
When using a stand-alone PoE injector, eg. RBGPOE, the limit is much higher (RBGPOE is rated at 2A regardless supply voltage) which is ample to power RB4011 with attachments (max 33W) off a 24V power adapter.
BR,
Metod
 
ghamauricio
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Re: Setting up a Mesh/CAPsMAN - 5GHz not transmitting

Sun Mar 21, 2021 4:02 am

I know, looks like I'll have to buy a separate PoE injector and maybe a PSU (perhaps the one that came with the device will do). But it's one more outlet used up. Bummer.

So hey, it looks like I kinda found out why I couldn't see the 5GHz network: it appears it was transmitting in a channel/frequency my Android phone wouldn't find - maybe due to radio chip limitation, maybe due to older spec country restriction. It was a PITA to find a working channel (even looking up the regulatory authority's specifications, Mikrotik wouldn't agree and say it couldn't broadcast in that channel), but after finding a few, I added them to the list and it's showing up in my cell phone.

Problems:
1) both Router and AP generally use the same channel.
2) I still can't use CAPsMAN scanner. It resets all radios when I do so, and I have to wait for them to connect - 5G specially, I have to wait for it to finish it's scan.

Double bummer.

At least I'm happy with what I managed to get until now.

Thanks for all the useful comments!

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