Recommendation WDS 2x Routers Wpa3 Wifi6 min. 4x Gbit ports


I am thinking of putting my WDS Network with 2x Netgear Wnr3500L v2 to sleep for good. Every some months, I have to hard plug them as sometimes, the 1000gbit ports fall back to 10mbit, which may or not be an error (it is a known flaw). I use Tomato FW for it and it still has worked ok for many years but speed is also limited to that 300mbit (but speed is not the main purpose, it is more like "nice to have"). Also, some parts in my house do not have a too good data rate. I guess, this could also be improved with new equipment.

I am looking now for 2x pieces of wifi router with WPA3, min. 4x gbit lan ports, reliable speed and of ourse, WDS with roper Wifi Roaming which worked quite well till now. Both are used as AP and have Gbit line for access to the network. Under the line, it worked well till now except those hard plugs every some months.

Any recommendations for me I could look at? I was quite firm with Tomato Firmware, so, openwrt should be not a big problem for basic tasks and configurations. But: I dont want to have a config which is too complex like a makeshift solution. I would be also ok with stock firmware or standard openwrt.


The Belkin RT3200 / Linksys EA8450, or Netgear WAX206 would be good choices. The Netgear WAX202 could be a good budget choice.


thx, will take a look at these 3. The RT3200 seems to be out of stock right now mostly everywhere in Europe. Also the rest is hard to get but time will tell :wink:

WAX206 should be available, you can always check the (almost) complete list of supported AX devices at

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So, WDS is part of the openwrt FW, right? Just to doublecheck.

yes, openwrt support WDS, if it does it well, or not, no idea, never used it myself.

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I am running a WDS on an EAP615-Wall / WAX202 combo myself (23.05 branch and prior to that master).

I might also go for 2x extra mini Gbit Switches and just 2x AP for Openwrt only for WDS and Wifi. No need for Poe and all that stuff. Everything is behind a Fortigate Firewall, internal.

My point was they're both MT7915 devices, one of them just happens to be a PoE AP.

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I'm using WDS between a MR8300 and a R6220. It works well. I have tried mesh, relayd, wds gives the best performance and is the easier to install.

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Now, after doing some research, it seems, many ax routers are either not available, have to be imported or have no regular image, just the plain os without lucid. Seems, ax Router manufacturers have underestimated the supply.

To add another alternative - the ZyXel WSM20 (Multy M1 in some geographies) is a good cheap option.

It has MT7621 with 7915 radios, so is well supported. Specs are solid at AX1800, 256MiB RAM, 128MiB flash, and you can pick them up in a 3 pack for almost nothing if you shop around. I got mine for £30 per unit, others have done even better.

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Unfortunately, also no image, only snapshot. Retail Software should be acc. to reviews really nasty bad.

It’s available in the 23.05 release candidates which are not moving targets and therefore more stable than SNAPSHOT.

I will admit to not even trying the stock software and flashing OpenWRT before completing first time setup.

As it already is "stable" as a rc can be, I get me a double pack of that WSM20, also, a bit for playing around and see how the ax does copared to the n Wifi. A bit experimenting around and a double pack for 100 € is ok.

What I get from feedback around the web: stock firmware is like alpha. I hope, with openwrt, it gets a reliable product. You can confirm that, @timothyjward ? Any restarts or freezes? I am in for the WDS and of course, higher distance. About Speed, I dont care that much as just used for mobile devices and some Tuya stuff.

Make sure to shop around. You might manage a 3 pack for that price.

I don't use WDS (I have wired linking my routers) but otherwise it's reliable.

  • Current uptime on my main router is ~30 days and it hasn't been restarted since I flashed it
  • Signal range is good to very good. I get full signal from 2.4 GHz at approximately 25 metres (the bottom of my garden) which is through a ceiling and a solid wall. 5GHz signal is a bit less good, but I still get 300-500Mbps at ~8 metres through a solid wall and a ceiling.

The reliability isn't that much of a surprise. The MT7621/7915 combination is used in quite a few devices that have been in stable releases. MT7621 has been in stable since 2019 I think.

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wow, 25m. My old netgear n300 capitulates after a window and a bit of shades around 10m in the garden.

I will buy today a pack of 3 (nearly same money as the pack of 2) and try to flash it by tftp and see how they work in a test. Thx for your infos! If they dont work as expected, I can sell them easily in single packs :slight_smile:

Between: I use WDS to have one single net around the house, both are wired to the 1gbit house line, but in the same ssid. Wifi radio roaming works so-so, but ok.

If you have the option of putting one in as a router and then wiring the others in as two dumb APs it would work well (basically what I do at home). Otherwise WDS to bridge between them should work but will be a bit of a weird topology. I guess you would need to set up some routes, but I’m not an expert.

If you can wire in then depending on location you could disable wireless on the router, and/or reduce signal power on the APs to encourage client roaming at the right places.

In WDS, you just insert the MAC of each router into the other router with same channel, ssid, etc, like link them,but both are in different location and both have full access to ethernet. No routes required but as a result, you can have one single Wifi and you dont loose bandwidth like with a wifi repeater. Roaming included.

If two WDS linked devices are not wired to each other (i.e. communicating by wireless with each other to provide WAN access) and simultaneously providing clients wireless WAN access, how do you avoid losing half the wireless bandwidth across the wireless hop between them when clients are connected to the AP only linked by wireless with WDS? TANSTAFL.

The hardware upgrade over your Wnr3500L should give you significantly better performance no matter how you set up your network. Nonetheless, if you are able to find a pack of three and dedicate one to be a router only and the other two as dumb AP's connected by wired back haul as timothyjward suggests, I think your network will perform even better. The MT7621 CPU has little capacity to spare (though still a nice upgrade over your Wnr3500L), so another advantage of doing this with MT7621 based hardware is it will take wireless traffic CPU load off the CPU on the router only device, and the let the CPUs in the dumb AP's focus on wireless only.