OpenWrt on RE650 and bridging

SO I've now loaded OpenWRT on one of my TP-link RE650's.
But can't get it to bridge the wifi uplink to the wired port.

Feel free to provide less information...

I used this page to get the bin file to load OpenWRT on it.

And I'm able to get it to connect to my WiFi (a plus is it's connecting with WPA3, the stock firmware would only do WPA2.)

From reading Relayd seems to work at L3, I'm just looking to do this at L2 (IE as the stock firmware was able to do.) (The reason for loading OpenWRT is to get SNMP, syslog, SSH, NTP config, and a few other items that the stock firmware doesn't do.)

If I plug a device into the wired port it doesn't have IP connectivity to the rest of the network.

Would RelayD do what I'm looking and I just misread it?

Just to give that method a try even though it says Relayd doesn't work for ipv6. I installed the packages and the protocol "relay bridge" doesn't show up.

Figured I'd give it a try, though now it's having some strange behavior.

The RE650 can't ping my gateway anymore.
Oddly other systems on wifi can ping it, but my network monitor that's in another subnet can't ping it.

The STA (client) end of a regular AP-STA link can't be in a bridge. If the router you're connecting to is also OpenWrt you have options that are a true bridge: WDS or mesh.

It's better to do regular routing than trying to use relayd.

1 Like

I'm not looking to do routing, and the TP-link OEM firmware does bridge the STA link with the Eth port.

The AP's are UniFi.

Also I'm not looking for it to re-transmit WiFi, just to serve as a media bridge to provide a wired port to connect to the network, while adding features that the OEM firmware lacks.

Well relayD is working for IPv4, though not for v6 (as the links had said.)

It's a little disappointing that functionality that the OEM firmware had isn't there in OpenWRT.
Though as I have 3x RE650's and 1x RE605x I'll keep messing with this RE650 till I'm sure I've tried all options before I load OpenWRT on the others.

That functionality of OEM firmware uses relayd or something very similar. It is not possible to make an AP-STA into a true bridge because the IEEE standard doesn't provide for transmitting the MAC address of the final destination machine on the STA side. It is assumed to be the STA itself, which serves the original intended use case where the STA is an endpoint machine like a phone or laptop.

Relayd cheats by rewriting ARP traffic so that from the AP's point of view, all the IP addresses of machines on the other side of the extender have the same MAC address of the extender. The AP thus sends their packets to the extender. Then the extender uses layer 3 routing to finally distribute them. This is inherently an IPv4 only process. Also it does not work well for traffic initiated from the extender side.

Well whatever the OEM firmware is doing is clearly more advanced as the wired clients behind it do have their MAC addresses show up to the AP's.

IE with the OEM firmware the mac address table on the switches that power the AP's have all of the client MAC addresses. and have IPv4 and ipv6 connectivity. And they were never in WDS mode.

The stock firmware probably performs an ARP (and ND, if it supports IPv6 at all) proxy (plus DHCP/DHCPv6/RA-relay), as that's the only way it can possible emulate a bridge with a normal (ie. 3 addresses in header, not WDS/EasyMesh/4-address-mode) wifi AP.