I. Product Setup Guides

Mesh Wireless - Initial Setup - Quick Start Wizard

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DrayTek Wireless
Mesh Setup
Quick Start Wizard

Initial Mesh Setup using the Quick Start Wizard

This guide demonstrates setting up your mesh network using the VigorAP's web interface and its Quick Start Wizard.

The VigorAP 903's Quick Start Wizard is a convenient way to perform the initial set up of the main VigorAP that will be used as the Mesh 'Root'. It assists in configuring the wireless network details and selects VigorAPs that will be 'adopted' into the Mesh network as Mesh 'Nodes'.

The VigorAP connected up to the wired network / router will be configured as the Mesh Root. When it's set up as the Mesh Root, it can scan for Mesh Nodes to join the Mesh. Additional new Mesh Nodes can be added when needed to improve network coverage and increase wireless network capacity.

Once set up, the VigorAP access points will automatically determine the best way to connect up to ensure low latency and high speed connectivity within the whole coverage area of the Mesh wireless network.

Mesh Wireless Basics

A DrayTek Mesh wireless network groups 2 to 8 VigorAP access points (per Mesh Group), into a single cohesive wireless network spanning the whole coverage area of all of the access points. Each VigorAP access point in the Mesh communicates wirelessly by linking one VigorAP to the next. Each wireless link between APs is called a 'Hop', with the Mesh allowing for up to 3 'Hops' if the network covers a large area or distance. Typical Mesh networks will have only one or two hops.

The DrayTek VigorAP 903 and other Mesh capable VigorAP access points have three modes of operation in a Mesh network:

Mesh AP Modes
Mesh RootMesh NodeMesh Node via Ethernet
There is one root in a mesh network and it controls the other VigorAPs.

The root is connected to the Internet router with a network cable. This controls the other VigorAPs in the Mesh Network and provides Internet connectivity.

The Mesh Root VigorAP is configured through the Web interface, or with the DrayTek Wireless app to operate as a Mesh Root, which can then add in any Mesh Nodes.
A Mesh Node connects to the Mesh Root or another nearby Mesh Node wirelessly.

VigorAPs set up as Mesh Nodes do not need to be configured, they're managed by the Mesh Root once they've been 'adopted' into the Mesh network.

The mesh nodes status and other information can be viewed via the DrayTek Wireless App or the Mesh Roots Web Interface.
A Mesh node which is connected to Ethernet and allows Wireless Clients or Other Mesh nodes to connect to it.

The Nodes communicates with the Mesh Root via Ethernet.

Nearby Mesh Nodes can connect to an Ethernet Mesh Node instead of another Wireless Node to reduce the 'hops' between Nodes.

When a new VigorAP is added into the Mesh network by the 'Mesh Root' as a new 'Mesh Node', it determines the best VigorAP to link up to, with no manual setup needed. Just power it up in the location it needs to cover and it will check for the best link it can achieve. This then links up to the Mesh network and begins providing wireless connectivity to clients.

The Mesh Root keeps track of the overall Mesh status, with a topology showing link status and signal strength. If one of the Mesh Nodes goes offline, any Mesh Nodes that were connected to it will connect up to the next best signal to continue providing wireless connectivity to clients.

Initial Connections

Step 1 - Connect up the Mesh Root VigorAP

To begin setting up a DrayTek Mesh wireless network, connect one VigorAP up to the wired network and power it up using the supplied AC/DC power adapter, or Power over Ethernet. This will be the Mesh Root AP.

A VigorAP that's connected up to both a network and power initially will set itself up in "Access Point" mode, it can then be set as the Mesh Root and add in any Mesh Nodes.

Step 2 - Connect Power to any Mesh Nodes

Connect up the power adapters to any VigorAPs that will be used as Mesh Nodes, so that they're ready to be 'adopted' by the Mesh Root AP during the setup process. For the initial setup, set up the Mesh Node VigorAPs close to the Mesh Root AP to ensure that they're discovered.

Mesh Nodes automatically detect whether to operate in Access Point mode or Mesh Node mode. To set up a VigorAP as a Mesh Node, just connect it up to the power supply and do not connect it up to the network. Mesh Nodes don't need to be configured manually, they are set up by the Mesh Root VigorAP once they're 'adopted' into the Mesh network.

If one of the Mesh Nodes has been set up as an Access Point, or was powered up with an Ethernet cable connected, hold in the Factory Reset button on that Mesh Node until the ACT light flashes rapidly. Disconnect any network cables and it will start up as a Mesh Node, ready to be adopted into the Mesh network.

Accessing the Mesh Root VigorAP

The VigorAP connected up to the network will be configured as the Mesh Root. When it's set up as the Mesh Root, it can scan for Mesh Nodes to join the Mesh. Additional new Mesh Nodes can be added when needed to improve network coverage and increase wireless network capacity.

The Quick Start Wizard is a convenient way to perform the initial set up of the wireless network name (SSID) and security that the Mesh wireless network will use, along with the administration password that will be used for all VigorAPs in the Mesh.

When a VigorAP is connected up to a network, it will attempt to get an IP address on the network using DHCP.

To locate the VigorAP access point on the network it's connected to, you can use the DrayTek Device Finder utility for Windows, or with a DrayTek Vigor router, the access point's IP address can be found in the [External Devices] menu of the router.

Click the "Go" link to open the VigorAP's web interface in the browser. This will connect using HTTPS so that the session is encrypted. If your browser pops up a warning about a self-signed certificate, accept the warning and proceed. See this guide for additional details on self-signed certificate warnings.

This displays the login prompt for the VigorAP. Enter the default username and password then click Login to proceed:

Default UsernameDefault Password
admin admin

Set up the Mesh Root with the Quick Start Wizard

Step 1 - Operation Mode

Upon first login, the VigorAP displays the Quick Start Wizard.

Set the Operation Mode to Mesh Root. A name can be specified for the Mesh, this can be left on its default setting, but it can be useful to differentiate Mesh groups if setting up more than one Mesh on the same network.

Click Next Step to proceed.

Step 2 - Wireless Setup

On the WiFi Setup screen, set the wireless network name (SSID) that the Mesh network will use and set the security key.
This applies to both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands.

If needed, set the SSID & password for a secondary wireless network, which can apply bandwidth limits and time restrictions.

Once this is set with the desired wireless configuration details, click Next Step to proceed.

Step 3 - Set the Admin Password

On the Admin Password screen, set a secure password that will be used to administrate all VigorAPs in the Mesh.

Click Next Step to proceed.

Step 4 - Apply Configuration

The VigorAP will display a summary of the setting changes that will be applied.

Click Finish and the VigorAP will begin applying the new configuration.

Step 5 - Add New Mesh Nodes

Once the configuration changes have been applied, the VigorAP will begin to locate new Mesh Nodes to join the Mesh network.

Wait 30 seconds for it to finish scanning for VigorAPs.

If the VigorAPs you expect to see are not shown, check that the Mesh Node VigorAPs are powered up and within the wireless range of the Mesh Root VigorAP. For the initial setup, it's okay to set everything up in the same room, then move the Mesh Nodes out to their intended locations after the initial setup.

Step 6 - Select Mesh Nodes

To add a VigorAP into the Mesh, tick the Select tickbox.

Specify the Name that will be used to identify the VigorAP.

When ready, click Apply and the Mesh Root will begin setting up the Mesh and the selected Mesh Nodes. This process can take 2-3 minutes.

Step 7 - Apply Configuration to Mesh Nodes

Wait for the Mesh Root VigorAP to finish setting up the new Mesh Nodes.

Step 8 - Finish Quick Start Wizard

Once this completes, the Mesh Root VigorAP will display the current status of Mesh Nodes that are connected to it.

It doesn't matter if one or more nodes hasn't connected yet, it can take a few minutes for the Mesh Nodes to determine the best configuration.

Click Finish to proceed to the [Dashboard] view of the VigorAP, which summarises the usage and status of the VigorAP.

The Mesh network is now ready for use.

Step 9 - View Mesh Status

To view the current status and configuration of the Mesh wireless network, click the arrow to expand the Mesh Network status:

This displays the APs in a list view, with the connection strength for each connected Mesh Node.

Click on the squares icon to view the Mesh status as a topology:

In the topology view, Mesh Nodes connecting through other Mesh Nodes are displayed further down in the 'tree':

Step 10 - View Detailed Mesh Status

If there are any VigorAPs that haven't connected up, view the detailed status information in [Mesh] > [Mesh Status].

The Downlink information displays which wireless links are currently active on the VigorAP.

If a Mesh Node was successfully added into the Mesh but does not show as connected, move the VigorAP it to its intended location and it will attempt to reconnect. Otherwise, try moving the Mesh Node VigorAP closer to the Mesh Root or another nearby Mesh Node.

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