10 Replies Latest reply: Mar 23, 2011 9:03 PM by KC Tom
KC Tom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I just picked up a used AirPort Extreme N (Gigabit Ethernet) to replace my current non-Apple router, which has worked satisfactorily but lacks the ability to share disks--something I need. Using my G5 running 10.4.11, I downloaded AirPort Utility 5.4.2 to set up the new (to me) device, and did a factory reset just to clear everything out. I placed the AirPort in the network exactly where the old one had been--with its WAN port connected to the line supplied by my ISP (see below) and its three other ethernet ports connected to various clients. Then I ran into a problem:

Under the "Internet" icon of Airport Utility, I set it to Connect Using Ethernet, and Configure IPv4 using DHCP (My current router uses DHCP to provide IP addresss to both the wired and wireless devices on my network). The numbers below that are: IP address 192.168.1.12, subnet mask 255.255.255.0, and router address 192.168.1.1.

The first field of the line labeled "DNS Server(s)" defaults to 192.168.1.1, while the second field is empty, as are the fields Domain Name and DHCP Client ID. I left Ethernet WAN port on "Automatic" and put "Connection Sharing" on "Share a Public IP address," since I believe its combination of DHCP and NAT offer the best security.

The problem: When I click the "Update" button to confirm my settings, I get this message: "The DHCP range you have entered conflicts with the WAN IP address of your Apple wireless device."

Although I am unclear as to why the Internet Connection pane of the AirPort Utility lists "IP address" and "Router address" as two separate numbers (aren't they referring to the same device, the AirPort itself? How can it have two IP addresses?), I figured that I could play it safe and change the starting number to 192.168.1.13 to avoid the conflicts with 192.168.1.12.

But I still get the same error message when pressing "update." I tried changing the range to 192.168.1.50 - 192.168.1.60, and I still get the same error message. There seems to be no range that the utility will accept as non-conflicting with the "WAN IP address" of the Airport.

My ISP did not provide a visible modem as others in the past have done. The internet connection they left me simply comes out of a box on the back of the house that is connected by fiber optics to (presumably) a fiber optic line out in the street. However, this "supply line" has always worked fine with my non-Apple router and--after disconnecting the AirPort that had temporarily taken its place--is working right now as I throw this question to the forum.

Additional notes:
* Under the NAT tab, the box "Enable NAT Port Mapping Protocol" is checked, as it was by default) while "Enable default host at" is unchecked and blank.
* While I currently have wireless turned on in the AirPort, I haven't even tried wireless connectivity yet and want to make sure my wired connectivity is working first.

Thanks for any assistance.

G5, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,260 points)
    The problem: When I click the "Update" button to confirm my settings, I get this message: "The DHCP range you have entered conflicts with the WAN IP address of your Apple wireless device."


    This error message typically indicates that your 802.11n AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBSn) is receiving a Private (as opposed to a Public IP address) on its WAN port. That could be because your ISP does not provide any device (computer or router), that is directly connected to their "box," with a Public IP address.

    Your AEBSn is both a DHCP client (on the WAN-side) and a DHCP server (on the LAN-side). The Configure IPv4 is basically the on/off switch for the AEBSn's DHCP client. It's other option, PPPoE, would only be used if your ISP requires it.

    One option would be to reconfigure the AEBSn as a bridge. This would disable both the AEBSn's NAT & DHCP services.

    Although I am unclear as to why the Internet Connection pane of the AirPort Utility lists "IP address" and "Router address" as two separate numbers (aren't they referring to the same device, the AirPort itself? How can it have two IP addresses?


    The IP address information on (actually the TCP/IP pane) is showing you the AEBSn's WAN port settings. Settings that with Configure IPv4 set to Using DHCP would come from the DHCP server upstream of it. If this server was providing Public IP addresses then the values in both the IP Address & Router Address fields would not be in any of the three valid Private IP Address ranges (10.x, 172.x, or 192.x)

    Under the NAT tab, the box "Enable NAT Port Mapping Protocol" is checked, as it was by default) while "Enable default host at" is unchecked and blank.


    This setting would not have anything to do with the error message that you are getting. Instead, this option is used as an on/off switch for the NAT-PMP protocol. This protocol is similar to non-AirPorts' UPnP protocol.

    While I currently have wireless turned on in the AirPort, I haven't even tried wireless connectivity yet and want to make sure my wired connectivity is working first.


    Both wired and wireless clients will be impacted by this until resolved. I again, suggest that you try reconfiguring the AEBSn as a bridge. (ref: AirPort Utility > Select the AEBSn > Manual Setup > Internet > Internet Connection > Connection Sharing = Off (Bridge Mode))
  • KC Tom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I was able to set the AEBSn to bridge mode and still get internet access, but in this mode I am getting strange IP ranges on my wireless devices (such as 69.x.x.x), while wired devices still show 192.x.x.x numbers. I'm also concerned that by running in bridge mode I will lose the security benefits of having the AEBSn pass out addresses to local devices via DHCP, as well as the security benefits of NAT.

    In addition, the unit is exhibiting numerous erratic behaviors that bear no apparent relationship to any other (non-Apple) wireless router I have ever owned.

    For one thing, every time I hit the update button and approve the AEBSn restart, the UI of Airport Utility says it's "writing the AirPort Extreme configuration" for about two minutes, then gives an error message stating that there was a problem saving my changes and that I should make sure I'm connected to it via ethernet. Well, I am connected to it via ethernet (with one switch in between), and all the other status messages and changes I can make through the application's UI appear to work fine.

    Sometimes, when I simply restart the software and choose the manual configuration option, I get an error--after about two minutes--stating that it's having trouble reading the unit's configuration.

    Sometimes, the AEBSn appears to simply drop off the network, and the AirPort Utility simply says it can't find it--even though I'm connecting via ethernet, and even though my network never appears to create communication issues between my Netgear router and my Mac.

    The Netgear has no problem doing what I'm after--On its WAN port, it grabs a 64.x.x.x internet address as a dhcp client, then effortlessly and cleanly doles out private-range 192.168.1.x addresses--.2, .3, .4, .5--to all the devices on my net, protecting these devices with a SPI firewall and the NAT barrier, as well. I am unable to get the AEBSn to do this.
  • KC Tom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    The guy who sold me the AirPort Extreme believes all the problems I'm having stem from running a version of AirPort Utility (5.4.2) that is too old for the firmware he had upgraded it to. However, until I upgrade my OS to 10.5 or later, it is the newest version of the utility available to me. I will test his theory with a friend's laptop that is running 10.5.x--If the AirPort seems to work properly with the latest utility, I'll think about upgrading to 10.5 or later on my own Mac. Thanks for your input.
  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,260 points)
    The guy who sold me the AirPort Extreme believes all the problems I'm having stem from running a version of AirPort Utility (5.4.2) that is too old for the firmware he had upgraded it to.


    What is the Part# of your AEBSn? There, currently, are four generations of the 802.11n Extreme:
    o 1G - MA073LL/A (uses firmware v7.4.n)
    o 2G - MB053LL/A (uses firmware v7.4.n)
    o 3G - MB763LL/A (uses firmware v7.5.n)
    o 4G - MC340LL/A (uses firmware v7.5.n)

    The 1G & 2G versions can be administered with either the 5.4+ OR 5.5+ version of the AirPort Utility. For the 3G & 4G versions, you must use v5.5+ with a Mac running OS X 10.4+ ... so you don't need to upgrade to Leopard.
  • William Boyd, Jr. Level 6 Level 6 (10,515 points)
    Tesserax wrote:
    There, currently, are four generations of the 802.11n Extreme:


    Two curiosity questions:

    1) How does one find that type of information?

    2) Is there a source of cross-references between M...LL/A part numbers and Annnn model numbers?
  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,260 points)
    1) How does one find that type of information?


    I have three "sources:" 1) Apple Support - Specifications, 2) Mactracker, & 3) My personal records developed over time ... and 4) A number of excellent technical references, like the Take Control series of eBooks ... just to name one.

    2) Is there a source of cross-references between M...LL/A part numbers and Annnn model numbers?


    Not that I'm aware of ... but here's what I have from my records for the 802.11n AirPort Extremes:

    1st Gen: Model# A1143 / Part# MA073LL/A (fast Ethernet/802.11n Draft)
    2nd Gen: Model# A1143 / Part# MB053LL/A (Gigabit Ethernet/802.11n Draft)
    3rd Gen: Model# A1301 / Part# MB763LL/A (Gigabit Ethernet/802.11n Draft/Simultaneous Dual Band)
    4th Gen: Model# A1354 / Part# MC340LL/A (Gigabit Ethernet/802.11n Final/Simultaneous Dual Band)
  • William Boyd, Jr. Level 6 Level 6 (10,515 points)
    Tesserax wrote:
    I have three "sources:" 1) Apple Support - Specifications


    Thanks for the information. Those Apple spec pages look really useful, but they list neither part numbers nor model numbers.

    2) Mactracker


    I hadn't realized that Mactracker listed AirPort gear.

    4) A number of excellent technical references, like the Take Control series of eBooks ... just to name one.


    I depend on Take Control of Your 802.11n AirPort Network too, although it hasn't been updated since Sept. 2009.

    2) Is there a source of cross-references between M...LL/A part numbers and Annnn model numbers?


    Not that I'm aware of ... but here's what I have from my records for the 802.11n AirPort Extremes:

    1st Gen: Model# A1143 / Part# MA073LL/A (fast Ethernet/802.11n Draft)
    2nd Gen: Model# A1143 / Part# MB053LL/A (Gigabit Ethernet/802.11n Draft)


    Mactracker seems to list both part numbers and model numbers. I think it's odd that two different part numbers would have the same model number. I imagine that Apple might have a good reason to do that, but the logic escapes me.
  • KC Tom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    No marking on the AEBS indicates a part number--only the model number A1143, which--per wikipedia--makes it either a MA073LL/A (1G) or MB053LL/A (2G). I'm guessing it's 2G because the guy who sold it to me said it had gigabit ports on it (the only difference I can tell between the two A1143 variants).

    I'm glad to hear that I should be able to use the 5.4x utility, but at the same time disappointed because because that utility, plus my particular AirPort Extreme, exhibit erratic UI behavior no matter what I try.

    I'm not sure what version of the 5.5x utility you are referring to as running fine under Tiger, because the download page for the 5.51 utility ( http://support.apple.com/kb/DL955 ) clearly states that it requires OS 10.5.7 or later.
  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,260 points)
    I'm not sure what version of the 5.5x utility you are referring to as running fine under Tiger, because the download page for the 5.51 utility ( http://support.apple.com/kb/DL955 ) clearly states that it requires OS 10.5.7 or later.


    Sorry, my error. You are correct. It was the 5.4.x version that would work with Tiger ... which could be used for the first two generations of the AEBSn.
  • KC Tom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I simply let the AirPort unit sit for a few months, plugged it back in, and suddenly everything worked properly. I have no explanation for why.