Datto Networking: POE gateway acts like a repeater instead of a gateway


Question: One of my nodes running over POE is currently acting as a Repeater instead of a Gateway. I have connected my laptop to the connection and have confirmed we have Internet connectivity. We tried using another node and the same thing happens; Power, WLAN, but no Internet light. It just acts as a regular old node. What could be the issue?


The sequence you start things up is absolutely critical. When you are first installing the node confirm that your Router/Switch is powered up and actively handing out DHCP addresses. Only after your Router/Switch are turned on, you can plug the lan connection into the node. (If you are running your Category 5/5e/6 cable over 100m or 300 feet this may also cause disruption in connectivity)

When your node first turns on it will sense whether or not a live Internet connection is available.  If there is an available connection, it will acquire a DHCP address provided by the router to establish the connection and configure itself to Gateway mode.

If the router does not issue IP addresses using DHCP then the node will decide it cannot connect to the network and it switches to repeater mode. It will then acquire an address from another repeater or gateway node relay. 

Try the following troubleshooting steps:

1. Double-check that you have Internet connectivity through that Ethernet line. If your laptop has wireless enabled it will receive all transmissions through the wireless network instead of your laptop's Ethernet jack. There could be a good chance that the wire may be cross-wired (If wired manually). This means it may be receiving power, but not data.

2. Make sure your Ethernet cable run is no longer than the ANSI/TIA/EIA standard of 100m or approximately 300 feet. Anything past this distance is HIGHLY susceptible to data distortion, cross-talk, and interference which can all lead to connectivity problems.

Also, try testing the node in a location with confirmed networking signal. If the node correctly works, you can rule out any problems with the device itself and pin-point the problem to your connection.

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