I'm trying to get my home network to look something like this: Network Architecture

The dotted lines denote wireless connections, and the solid lines denote wired connections. In case the diagram isn't clear, I want the "Normal Linksys" router to view "Other Router" as a wireless client with ip address, and to forward all packets from that "Other Router" to the internet; I also want "Other Router" to act as a normal wireless router, but use a wireless bridge instead of the internet port on the back of the router as the default path.

How do I accomplish this? I have tomato installed on the "Other Router", but I could switch to DD-WRT (the router is compatible with both). I know how I'd do this if the connection between "Normal Linksys" and "Other Router" were wired, but I can't figure out how to do this wirelessly, even though it seems like it should be pretty straightforward.

EDIT: I think I may have put the ip addresses in the wrong space. I'm no networking expert, my apologies. "Other Devices" should view "Normal Linksys" as on the network "MAIN", and "Xbox", "Laptop" and "Desktop" should view "Other Router" as on the network "OTHER". "Normal Linksys" should view "Other Router" as, and "Other Router" should view "Normal Linksys" as the default path/internet port.

EDIT2: I got what I wanted by installing dd-wrt on only "Other Router" and setting up a wireless repeater bridge. I did this instead of setting up an access point because my normal linksys router doesn't support them, is incompatible with dd-wrt and tomato, and because I just wanted to do it this way I really wanted a separate SSID for my laptop/desktop/xbox, even though there really isn't any reason for it.

For anyone who might be reading this trying to do something similar, you might have to make the security key to connect to your main router the same as the wireless key for your other router (even though you're supposed to be able to make a new key on "other router", it wouldn't work for me unless the keys used the same algorithm and had the same value. It also worked if wireless security was disable on "other router", but that seemed like a bad idea).

  • I would branch one of the networks into, or use an IP off on the other device and use NAT so you have a different network,,, or whatever
    – cutrightjm
    Sep 13, 2014 at 20:58

2 Answers 2


Don't use WDS unless you have to. It's gimmicky and often unhelpful. and wireless wds usually costs bandwidth.

If I understand your diagram and post all you really want is your tomato router to act as an access point only. My memory won't serve me here but it's should be called something like Bridge mode, Access Point mode or similar - I'm sure Google can be a better friend than me here, sorry.

Acting as a bridge (or bare AP) all devices will recognize the Linksys @ .1.1 as the router for the network and in this way everyone will share the same dns, same dhcp pool, etc.

If this is not what you want, please elaborate more on what it is you're trying to accomplish.

  • What I want is wireless client mode (wi-fiplanet.com/tutorials/article.php/3810281), and to have things connect to "Other Router" wirelessly (Wireless client mode on tomato only seems to let you connect to the client router via an ethernet connection)
    – Loktopus
    Sep 13, 2014 at 21:27
  • I figured out the name of what I want to set up: a repeater bridge. Thanks for your help, setting it up now.
    – Loktopus
    Sep 13, 2014 at 22:13
  • Glad you figured it out. Minor nitpick but if you're not using WDS as the solution I would question why you accepted WDS as your correct answer.
    – JoelAZ
    Sep 14, 2014 at 7:18
  • He explained a lot of specifics and answered some of the related questions I had.
    – Loktopus
    Sep 14, 2014 at 7:31
  • @Didericis Fair enough. I just thought it a bit misleading to future readers as WDS is not the actual solution. As I said though, just a minor nitpick.
    – JoelAZ
    Sep 28, 2014 at 7:44

WDS is what you want to use to accomplish this. I know for a fact that DD-WRT supports WDS, and from looking at this howtogeek article it would appear that Tomato does as well. The "other router" would simply pass DHCP requests on to the Linksys, and the Linksys would act as the primary DHCP server/gateway/etc. Essentially setting up WDS between the two routers would do everything that you're asking. I'm not sure if your Linksys would require custom firmware (ie Tomato/DD-WRT/OpenWRT etc) to support WDS or if it would do it natively though. Also note that with WDS there is no need to have a separate SSID or even a separate network/subnet.

  • 1
    I confirm that Tomato can do this.
    – Jan
    Sep 13, 2014 at 21:09
  • I want it to have a different SSID though. I want to treat it as a separate network; I don't want the laptop, xbox or desktop to be able to talk to anything not connected to "Other Router", and vice versa.
    – Loktopus
    Sep 13, 2014 at 21:22
  • Is there a specific requirement/reason for why you want a separate network? Sep 13, 2014 at 21:27
  • I'm running a media server off the desktop, and don't want other people who use "Linksys Router" to be able to access it. I also want the xbox and the desktop to be able to communicate with each other without going of the air to make it as fast as possible, so I don't want "Linksys Router" to serve as the main router (would that be a problem, or no?)
    – Loktopus
    Sep 13, 2014 at 21:32
  • 1
    No problem - I will say though that WDS is not a certified standard, and there have been compatibility issues between wireless chipsets. I've never personally run into compatibility issues though, but the possibility is still there. @JoelAZ mentioned wireless bridging, which would also work, but under the right circumstances it can be slower than WDS; the comment about WDS costing bandwidth (technically throughput) is situational and would be highly dependent on which devices were communicating - see the wikipedia article for more details on that. Sep 13, 2014 at 22:13

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