Motorola 2210 DSL Modem with WRT54G Linksys

December 2016

Routers are very important for establishing wireless internet connections. The two types of modems that are generally used are Cable modems and DSL modems. Out of these two, only the DSL modem requires a PPPoE connection before assigning the IP address. Motorola 2210 is one such modem which uses WRT54G Linksys router to establish a Wi-Fi network. To set up the connection, the user has to enter the advanced setting and change the PPPoE setting. As an additional step to optimize hardware, it is advisable to use wireless G adapters and to avoid DSL modem/router combo boxes.

In order for a router to work properly, the WAN (internet), and LAN (home network) connections must be on two different networks. By default, the Motorola 2210 uses 192.168.1.0/24 as the default network, and gives a single IP address to a connected device, such as a laptop or PC. The WRT54G that you are using connects to the modem in the exact same way. This method of Automatic IP address assignment is called DHCP. By default, the WRT54G (and most routers) uses this configuration for the WAN, or Internet, connection. In order for devices to connect to the router, they must be on a network that is different from that of the DSL modem. Changing the LAN, or home network side, of the router interface to 192.168.2.1, changes the network that it is on. The router can now forward packets between your home network and the internet successfully.

There is a difference with AT&T DSL and RR Cable Internet devices:

The main difference is Cable modems use the Automatic DHCP connection by default, and give a worldwide IP address directly to the modem without authentication (RR uses one-time only MAC address registrations on a per modem basis). DSL modems, require a PPPoE connection. This Point-to-Point protocol requires a username and password before an IP address is given. If you connect to the DSL modem you will see that you are required to enter your username (name@sbcglobal.net) and password. Read below on different ways to configure this connection.

There are multiple ways to setup this connection, here are a couple:
  • 1. Change the DSL modem to initiate the PPPoE connection on the computer (by default it is set to modem). To do this, log into the DSL modem at 192.168.1.254. Enter the access code and enter advanced configuration and change the PPPoE settings. Changing this setting means that the PPPoE connection must now be configured on the Router. You must now change the WRT54G router from "Dynamic - DHCP" to "PPPoE". Enter the DSL username and password and now your router will have a 69.X.X.X (or similar) IP address. If you use this method you can leave your router set to 192.168.1.1. This method is the most preferred in my opinion.
  • 2. Leave the DSL modem with the PPPoE connection at the modem (default). This means you must reconfigure the router to have a different IP address than 192.168.1.1 (as explained above).
  • 3. Change the DSL modem to Bridged Mode. This method requires you to enter the PPPoE information at the modem, bridges the connection and gives the router a worldwide IP address. This method is the least preferred in my opinion.


Here are my recommendations for optimized configuration of hardware:
-Use Wireless G adapters at a minimum, N if possible.
-Buy a DSL modem (or Cable Modem) rather than a DSL modem/router combo box (such as 2WIRE)
-Purchase a WRT160N (10/100 LAN) or WRT310N (Gigabit LAN) Wireless-N router.
-(advanced) Install DD-WRT Firmware v24 SP1 *note: this firmware is open source but greatly increases the performance of your router, and also simplifies the configuration.

I just threw away my 2WIRE and bought a Motorola 2210 and WRT310N router with DD-WRT and absolutely love it. The configuration is very stable and performance is excellent. Have not had any problems so far and highly recommend this configuration for anyone looking for a high-speed home networking solution. Now that PS3s, XBOX 360s, Media Servers are becoming more and more common, configurations such as these are becoming more and more important.

Thanks to Beej32 for this tip on the forum.

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