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Troubleshooting Routers

“I can’t see the AP / SSID.”
  • Is it on?
  • Is the green light on on the router?
  • Is the Ethernet plugged in to the POE jack, and the POE brick plugged in to a working power outlet?
  • Is it broadcasting an AP?
“I see the AP, but my device can’t associate with it.”
  • make sure it’s AP and not ad-hoc?
  • open or closed?
  • Passwords should be different for ap than for admin/root
  • if you’re able to see it, but can’t resolve association, you may be too far away (“talk” and “listen”) - this can be true even when the signal appears strong on your device
  • Try associating with a 5GHz AP if available, as this likely has less interference.
“I can’t get out to the internet.”
  • ping (
  • Does the router have a splash page?
  • If so, log in to authenticate. Navigate to any web page and it should bring up the splash page.
  • Does it work if you are plugged in via Ethernet to the POE’s LAN port?
“I can’t get to the splash page.”
  • Enter to your address bar.
  • Power cycle your client’s Wi-Fi and re-associate with the AP.
“It’s really slow.”
  • run a traceroute
  • run traceroute to, and note how many hops it takes to get to the gateway node if you know it.
  • check olsr-viz and neighbor routes to see cumulative link quality.
“Can’t VPN in from the outside, but can see AP”
“Can’t VPN from outside, but can get internet from inside”

(maybe a grid matrix)

“hasn’t been working”
  • (see AP but can’t connect?) (can’t see AP?) (can connect to internet via this router through another but can’t associate?) »> look at dhcp leases
"I think my node is restarting. How can I tell?"
  • Edit the /etc/rc.local file on the node, and add the following lines to the end of the file:
echo "Restarted on" $DATE >> /root/restarts
  • This script will add a line to the file /root/restarts every time it restarts with the date and time that it was restarted.
  • This script will use the date and time that it knows. It is usually a good idea to add the difference between the current time and the routers time to the file first. You can run the following line from the router to do this. You will replace CURRENT_TIME in the string with the actual current time.
echo "The current time is CURRENT_TIME but the computer thinks that it is" $(date) >> /root/restarts
date >> /root/restarts