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Author Topic: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L  (Read 15599 times)

raven-au

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Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« on: March 27, 2013, 12:05:51 AM »

Hi all,

I'm seeing some unexpected behaviour from my new DIR-865L routers.

The problems occur in a setup with one 865 as an AP and more than one other 865 set as a bridge.

Obviously, all devices have the same SSID, wireless and security settings.

One hop works for any two devices where, of course, one of the devices is the AP.

The topology is, for example,

 NAS (QNAP) --- 865 (bridge mode) --- 865 (router mode) --- 865 (brigde mode) --- TV with DLNA player

In this case the TV doesn't see the NAS DLNA server.

That's probably not so surprising since it's common for a "router" to not pass broadcasts and can be worked around for SMB by using WINS.

But using WINS (I believe, and I will get to test it in time) does not help because of the second problem.

The topology of the second problem is,

Computer  --- 865 (bridge mode) --- 865 (router mode) --- 865 (brigde mode) --- NAS (QNAP)

In this case opening a browser to the interface on the QNAP basically doesn't work. The behaviour is best described by observing a continuously running ping from the computer to the NAS. The ping runs fine until browser access is attempted and then, after several seconds stops for a while, starts for a little while and so on, resulting a ping report of significant packet lose. I've seen 80% in the few tests I did.

The result is that the NAS interface cannot be used.

As a comparison,  using the topology

Computer --- 865 (router mode) --- 865 (bridge mode) --- NAS

and using the QNAP file manager app to download (or upload) a file I get between 50 and 60 MB/s which is rather good, better than I expected. For the two hop case I would hope for 20 to 25 (or better) MB/s taking into account the double handling and protocol overheads.

I also quickly checked Windows explorer with the two hop case and found the throughput terrible, at about 1 MB/s via a SMB share but haven't done further testing as yet. But it did work, all be it very slowly.

So, given the devices support a bridge mode, first there should be a way to tell the device to forward broadcasts to the "bridge" network, which obviously excludes the internet interface.

Second, whatever is causing the throughput problem needs to be identified and hopefully fixed.

I really don't know what is causing it but the devices do seem to be able to communicate.
I was thinking that perhaps proxy arp is not being used (or is not setup) on the router causing the end point to not be able to construct network packets, causing the hit and miss type behaviour (when it sometimes sees an arp reply) but can't work out a way to confirm that.

Any help would be much appreciated.

Ian
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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2013, 12:18:20 AM »

More info ....

Firmware is 1.03.
The factory reset procedure wasn't followed when the devices were updated.

A factory reset was then done followed by manual reconfiguration of all the devices and the problem case re-tested.

Any other information needed?
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2013, 09:06:27 AM »

Link>Welcome!
Whoh man, this is crazy. :o You have 3 DIR-865Ls?

What region are you located?
What are the distances between each of the 865Ls?
Where are all these devices located in relation to each other?

This is a new topology to me and not completely sure if it's even supported. I think you have too many bridges and really, you need to simplify this.  ::)

I would recommend the following:
Putting the NAS and TV on a same connection for best performance and access between then using a external Gb network switch. This will help eliminate any un-necessary router processing that can impact network performances. You can even put the PC on the same switch, which would be preferred however isn't necessary. Only if you are doing a lot of large file xfers from the PC to the NAS would it be preferred.

Then you could have 1 bridged 865L connected as your bridge to the Main 865L router to provide the these clients with Internet when needed.

There are a couple of ways of doing this I think:
ISP Modem>Main 865L Router<>External Gb Switch><LAN wired PC, NAS and TV to switch.
or
ISP Modem>Main 865L Router<>External Gb Switch><LAN wired NAS and TV to switch.
                                       <>LAN wired PC to Router.
or
ISP Modem>Main 865L Router<Distance?>865 (brigde mode)><LAN wired NAS and TV to back of bridged 865L.
                                       <>Lan wired PC to Router.
or
ISP Modem>Main 865L Router<Distance?>865 (brigde mode)><LAN wired PC, NAS and TV to back of bridged 865L.

You could even put an extra network switch on the back end of the bridged 865L if you need more LAN ports.

I would also recommend doing the following on the main 865L router:
Setup DHCP reserved IP addresses for all devices ON the router. Setup/Networking. This ensures each devices gets its own IP address when turned on and connected, eliminates IP address conflicts and helps in troubleshooting.
Ensure devices are set to auto obtain an IP address.
If IPv6 is an option on the router, select Local Connection Only or Disable IPv6 options under Setup/IPv6.
Set Firewall settings to Endpoint Independent for TCP and UDP under Advanced/Firewall.
Enable uPnP and Multi-cast Streaming under Advanced/Networking. Disable uPnP for testing Port Forwarding rules. Disable IPv6 Multi-cast Streaming if IPv6 is not being used.
Turn off WISH, and WPS under Advanced.
WAN Port Speed set to Auto or specific speed? Some newer ISP modems support 1000Mb so manually setting to Gb speeds can be supported by the router. Advanced/Advanced Networking/WAN Port Speed
Set current Time Zone, Date and Time. Use an NTP server feature. Tools/Time.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2013, 09:25:46 AM by FurryNutz »
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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2013, 04:52:31 AM »

Link>Welcome!
Whoh man, this is crazy. :o You have 3 DIR-865Ls?

I do.

Quote
What region are you located?

Australia

Quote
What are the distances between each of the 865Ls?
Where are all these devices located in relation to each other?

The distances are a few meters.
I can identify wireless transmission problems and if I encounter them I accept the inherent limitations of wireless.

Without going into detail as to the whys, here is the layout:
My work desk in the dining room.
On one side of that is a common living area with TV, NAS, etc.
On the other side of that is my sons room with TV, games machines, etc.

The NAS has an HDMI port and I have an IR receiver connected to it so it must stay where it is.

Quote
This is a new topology to me and not completely sure if it's even supported. I think you have too many bridges and really, you need to simplify this.  ::)

Seems fairly simple to me.
Stick a central AP on my desk, place a client at each of the other two locations needing services.

Particularly given this statement on page 57 of the manual:

"There can be multiple DIR-865L units, in Bridge Mode, that can connect
to the central DIR-865L, in Router Mode. This gives users extra flexibility
and compatibility."

Sure, the throughput may not be adequate, even with 802.11ac, but if that's the case, then that's just the case.
But that isn't the issue I have.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2013, 06:52:50 AM »

I see page 58 is different from our version of the User Manual here in the NA region. Interesting that our manual makes no reference to this.  ???

Any cordless house phones?
Any other WiFi routers in the area? Link> Use InSSIDer to find out. How many?

Other then that, I presume that you are correct and have all this set up well and as per user manual instructions.

I'm going to recommend that you phone contact DLink support and ask for Tier 2 or higher support and inquire about this. There could be some problem in the wireless and bridging that in this configuration is being seen.

Please let us know if you find out any results and information about this from DLink.

I am interested on how this turns out.

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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2013, 12:40:12 AM »

I see page 58 is different from our version of the User Manual here in the NA region. Interesting that our manual makes no reference to this.  ???

Yes, I see that too.

Quote
Any cordless house phones?
Any other WiFi routers in the area? Link> Use InSSIDer to find out. How many?

You seem stuck thinking this is a wireless signal issue.
I'm fairly sure it isn't.

I have a couple of DECT phones operating in a 1.8Ghz band.
There are of course a bunch of 2.4 Ghz wireless routers around but there are no 5Ghz devices that I can see.

Quote
Other then that, I presume that you are correct and have all this set up well and as per user manual instructions.

I think so.

Quote
I'm going to recommend that you phone contact DLink support and ask for Tier 2 or higher support and inquire about this. There could be some problem in the wireless and bridging that in this configuration is being seen.

When I first read that I thought, oh no, I'm not going to subject myself to the support checklist pain but perhaps requesting to speak to a Tier 2 person would work and, in light of my current findings, is probably going to be needed.

Quote
Please let us know if you find out any results and information about this from DLink.

Further investigation has turned up some interesting information.

I'm fairly sure (which is what I say when I'm sure and the challenge is to prove me wrong, since nothing is ever necessarily 100% as a computing professional) that Twonkymedia server not showing up is because the 865L in bridge mode is not forwarding local multicasts to its lan interface.

I established that the 865L in router mode (with my current configuration) is passing them out of both its lan and wireless interface but the packets don't show up on the lan interface of an 865L in bridge mode connected by wireless to the 865L router.

What that means is that the Twonky server doesn't persistently show up regardless of the number of hops.

Also, Sony devices behind the 865L bridge see the Twonky server because they scan for devices and remember them, they don't rely only on local multicast. For example my Sony BluRay player (connected behind an 865L in bridge mode) can see a Twonky server instance on a NAS directly connected to the 865L router. But Samsung devices cannot, both Samsung SmartTVs and a Samsung BluRay player behind an 865L in bridge mode will see the Twonky server instance immediately after they are powered on (since they must do an initial scan request) but the entry goes away, presumably timing out after not seeing further multicast announcements.

I checked a DAP-1522 set as a bridge and it does pass the multicast announcements and the Twonky server can be seen when it is either directly connected the 865L router or two hops away connected behind an 865L in bridge mode. So the 865L in bridge mode does pass the multicast announcements to the router just doesn't pass them from its wireless interface to its lan interface.

I also found some further information on the second problem.

With an 865L in bridge mode using 2.4Ghz connected to an 865L in router mode that has another 865L in bridge mode connected via 5Ghz will work. The speed wasn't great but that's probably because the wireless signal in that location isn't the best, although the problem may be causing it to be slower than it could be. I'm not going to perseus that further.

The DAP-1522 over a 5Ghz link also fails the two hop test with the link speed rapidly dropping to zero while I get similar result as above using 2.4Ghz.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2013, 07:09:28 AM »

Seems like you might have found a bug with bridge mode.

I highly recommend that you phone contact your local regional DLink support office and inquire about this. They need to know about this.

Keep us posted on how it goes.
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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2013, 11:07:54 PM »

Seems like you might have found a bug with bridge mode.

I highly recommend that you phone contact your local regional DLink support office and inquire about this. They need to know about this.

Keep us posted on how it goes.

I tried calling support and It was, I suspect, a waste of time.

I tried requesting to speak to a Teir 2 support person but wasn't able to.
I had quite some difficulty explaining the local multicast problem but eventually was able to direct the support person to this thread.
At that point the call mysteriously terminated, I don't know why.

I did manage to recommend the support person direct someone with a deeper understanding of networking have a look at this thread.

Note well, I'm not complaining about the support person ability as I understand that almost all calls will be related to basic configuration and a high level of expertise of support people just isn't warranted or viable for cost reasons. I do however point out this case probably should have been escalated fairly early on in the discussion and the procedures to identify such cases seem to be lacking.

I didn't even get to the second problem which I think is a problem with the device in router mode (aka. the access point functionality) and I will do more on that when I get time although I wonder what will come of my efforts.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2013, 07:12:19 AM »

Thank you for sharing your experiences with CS. I will forward this on to my contact at DLink and see if maybe we can get someone with better knowledge about these units to review this and maybe get some information and or get in contact directly with you.

CS should not have hung up on you and this is the 2nd time that someone has mentioned this in the past week. This should not be happening. The only other thing you could attempt to do until we can find better official help on this would maybe try contacting a different regional support office, and if you can get thru, tell them about your previous CS experience that that you want to talk to level 3 or higher support about your situation. Try the NA or EU or maybe the Asia region I guess. Tell them that you don't want to be hung up again and is the reasons for calling into a different region. I would hope that someone would take up the task and help you better.

I'll forward this on and see what happens.

Keep us posted if you get any more info.
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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2013, 07:15:07 PM »

Thank you for sharing your experiences with CS. I will forward this on to my contact at DLink and see if maybe we can get someone with better knowledge about these units to review this and maybe get some information and or get in contact directly with you.

Thanks

Quote
CS should not have hung up on you and this is the 2nd time that someone has mentioned this in the past week. This should not be happening. The only other thing you could attempt to do until we can find better official help on this would maybe try contacting a different regional support office, and if you can get thru, tell them about your previous CS experience that that you want to talk to level 3 or higher support about your situation. Try the NA or EU or maybe the Asia region I guess. Tell them that you don't want to be hung up again and is the reasons for calling into a different region. I would hope that someone would take up the task and help you better.

I'm not sure they hung up on me as my phone came up with a fault message.
Maybe they are having trouble with the phone system.

I received an email saying they had tried to contact me by phone but didn't get an answer.
I see a missed call on my phone about the time they mention, so maybe they did make an effort.

I'm not sure I really want to go through that again though.

Also not sure about calling the US or other support centre, but I can't work out what is causing this so I will probably get to calling at some point.


Quote
I'll forward this on and see what happens.

Appreciated.

Quote
Keep us posted if you get any more info.

Will do.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2013, 06:53:09 AM »

I would attempt to email them back and ask them for a phone number that you can call them directly on or set up a time frame for them to call you and you be at the ready to pick up. I see my note to my contact works. ;)

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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2013, 10:41:31 PM »

fyi,

I replied to the email I received from Australian support (below).

Quote
On Tue, 2013-04-02 at 16:54 +1100, support@dlink.com.au wrote:
> Dear Ian Kent,
>
> We tried contacting you on 2/04/2013 4:54:16 PM EST. Sorry we missed you.
>
> If you continue having problems with your DIR-865L, please contact us at:

If you had reviewed the case you would be aware that I will continue to
have problems.

I think that contacting support again is not going to be useful to me.

The problem I believe is an inability of the support person to recognize
when it's appropriate to escalate customer issues to more experienced
support personnel.

I indicated that the problem descriptions, along with investigation that
has been done by me, can be reviewed on the DLink forum at:

http://forums.dlink.com/index.php?topic=53208.0

There should be sufficient information in this forum thread for support
staff to duplicate the issues and decide if there is reason to escalate
to DLink software engineering.

If you have any further questions you may email me and I will provide
any information that I can.

>
> AU: 1300 766868
> NZ: 0800 900900
>
> If you have Internet access please visit the tech support page for your
> product by clicking on the links below:
>
> http://www.dlink.com.au/tech/
>
> http://www.dlink.com.au/tech/default.asp?model=DIR-865L
>
> Here you can download the latest drivers, firmware, Setup Guides and
> manuals, plus access direct links to FAQs to resolve the problem that
> you might be having.

These are of no use to me because the problems I am seeing are, I
suspect, bugs within the current firmware.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2013, 06:42:38 AM »

I think you need to attempt to phone contact them on the phone, and not via email. Email is generally level 1 or 2 and not very helpful from my experiences. You need to talk to someone directly on the phone. I believe that this probably could be resolved however getting you and Dlink on the phone needs to happen. Please phone them or attempt to set up a time frame for them to call you and you be at the ready and waiting for the call.

If not, then you'll need to find other alternatives to your configuration of the 865Ls by eliminating a hop or finding other alternatives.

Good Luck
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raven-au

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2013, 06:36:01 PM »

I think you need to attempt to phone contact them on the phone, and not via email. Email is generally level 1 or 2 and not very helpful from my experiences. You need to talk to someone directly on the phone. I believe that this probably could be resolved however getting you and Dlink on the phone needs to happen. Please phone them or attempt to set up a time frame for them to call you and you be at the ready and waiting for the call.

I appreciate your effort trying to help but, as far as I'm concerned, I've done my duty and provided information to dlink for them to determine any action that needs to be taken.

I don't intend to subject myself to dlink support for the multicast problem again.

The bridge to bridge via ap on the same wireless band problem is another matter.
Of course this type issue is common and is generally only fixable by using WDS which dlink has chosen not to add to its feature set.

So I need to do more to work out whether or not it's even sensible to expect it to work.

Quote
If not, then you'll need to find other alternatives to your configuration of the 865Ls by eliminating a hop or finding other alternatives.

As it happens, since I had an 865L that I couldn't use anyway, I risked trying to fix the multicast problem myself.

Given the above symptoms I think the bridge just doesn't know where to send the multicast packets it receives and probably drops them (or sends them back to the default route).

Also, the LAN port interface has the allmulti option set when it is configured. I'm not sure that's needed.

So, adding the allmulti option to the WiFi interface configuration and adding a route to send local multicast traffic to the bridge interface when the WiFi interface is set to station mode (that would have to be the device in bridge mode) fixes this problem.

Since having one 865L use the 5GHz wireless and the second use the 2.4GHz wireless works and gives adequate performance (so far) I have a minimal working configuration now.

Ian
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FurryNutz

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Re: Too many hops beaks DIR-865L
« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2013, 06:48:21 PM »

Good luck in your endeavours.

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