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Bridging Networks with SXT

Two RouterBOARD SXT devices can be used to establish transparent wireless point-to-point network link. There are
multiple options how to do that. This guide shows the most simple and easiest way how to do that by using bridge wireless
mode on one side and station-bridge wireless mode on the other side.
RouterBOARD SXT devices has only Level 3 RouterOS license, but even with that it is possible to make wireless
connection between two SXT devices.

Contents
1. Make connection to the RouterBOARD SXT
2. Configure the first SXT device to the wireless bridge mode
3. Configure the second SXT device to the wireless station-bridge mode
4. Finetuning the RouterOS configuration to get the max speed
Make connection to the RouterBOARD SXT
There are multiple ways how to connect to the RouterBOARD (winbox, webfig, telnet, ssh, ...), but this guide will show
how to configure the device using Winbox utility. Winbox utility can be downloaded from the MikroTik webpage (
Winbox) or from the RouterBOARDs webpage. The SXT device by default has IP address 192.168.88.1 configured as a
default IP address on the ethernet interface. In order to connect to the SXT device make sure your computers IP address
range is form the same network address space. Connect the ethernet cable from the PC to the SXT device and power it on.
Open the Winbox utility and in the "Connect To" field write the IP address of the SXT device. If it can't connect click on the
"..." button to search for a RouterOS based devices. In that discovery windows select the SXT device IP or MAC which you
found and click Connect.

Configure the first SXT device to the wireless bridge mode


SXT device has build in default wireless configuration already, so only few changes are needed to be done. Open Wireless
menu and select the wireless interface. Change the Mode setting to "bridge" and specify the "frequency" on which the
wireless radio will be operating. If you don't see your countries allowed frequencies, then click in the "Advanced Mode" and
chose your country from the "country" dropbox field and then chose the frequency. It is recommended to use the frequency
that is in the bold in the wireless frequency drop down field. It is suggested to click on a "Apply" after each setting change
as if you configure some setting incorrectly every setting will be reverted to the previous state (not recommended when the
link is already active and running).
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Disable the NAT (masquerade) rule in the IP Firewall NAT menu as it is not needed when the transparent wireless setupo is
used. Disable the Firewall rule the IP Firewall Filter Input chain.

Disable the DHCP server and DHCP client as they are not needed in the transparent wireless setup. Go to the IP DHCP
Server menu and disable the server. Go to the IP DHCP Client menu and disable the client.

Create a Bridge interface and add add ethernet and wireless interface to the bridge ports. Open Bridge menu and click on
"+" and press OK. Open Bridge Ports menu and add 2 entries, one with ethernet interface added to the bridge and second
with wireless interfaces added to the bridge.
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It is advised to do so as the default IP address that the SXT device usually is used only for initial configuration as you may
confuse the SXT device with the other one if they both will be online in the same network. Add an IP address to the bridge
interface to communicate to the router after the SXT device will be deployed in the network. IP address can be added from
the IP Address menu.

The basic configuration for the Bridge mode device is done.

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Configure the second SXT device to the wireless station-bridge mode


Connect to the second SXT device the same way as it is described in first step. Configuration of the second SXT device is
similar to the first one.
Open Wireless menu and select the wireless interface. Change the Mode setting to "station-bridge". Make sure that you use
the same country as the first SXT device. In order to change the country setting you need to click on the "Advanced Mode"
button and then you will see the country field.
[image with station-bridge and county]
Disable the NAT (masquerade) rule in the IP Firewall NAT menu as it is not needed when the transparent wireless setupo is
used. Disable the Firewall rule the IP Firewall Filter Input chain.
[image on NAT disable and filter disable]
Disable the DHCP server and DHCP client as they are not needed in the transparent wireless setup. Go to the IP DHCP
Server menu and disable the server. Go to the IP DHCP Client menu and disable the client.
[image with both menus]
Create a Bridge interface and add add ethernet and wireless interface to the bridge ports. Open Bridge menu and click on
"+" and press OK. Open Bridge Ports menu and add 2 entries, one with ethernet interface added to the bridge and second
with wireless interfaces added to the bridge.
[image with bridge port add dialog for both interfaces]
It is advised to do so as the default IP address that the SXT device usually is used only for initial configuration as you may
confuse the SXT device with the other one if they both will be online in the same network. Add an IP address to the bridge
interface to communicate to the router after the SXT device will be deployed in the network. IP address can be added from
the IP Address menu.
[image with IP address adding]
The basic configuration for the Station-bridge device is done.
Finetuning the RouterOS configuration to get the max speed
After both devices are configured you should be able to see from the station-bridge device that the wireless connection is
established. It also means that the transparent setup should be working fine and you should be able to communicate between
both networks that are connected to the SXT ethernet sides.
http://wiki.mikrotik.com/wiki/Bridging_Networks_with_SXT

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Building to Building PTP links using MikroTik Wireless Products

We are often asked how to make building to building or point to point wireless links. As the MikroTik interface
does not change between models this How To can apply to any MikroTik Wireless based device. For this How
To I will be using a pair of the new MikroTik SXT ACs, to create a L2 transparent wireless bridge in a simple
point to point mode (PtP). This How To can also apply to point to multi point scenarios (PtMP). One SXT will be
set up in Bridge mode (effectively an AP) and the other as Station Bridge (i.e. the client), to ensure best
performance the link will be created and secured using the Mikrotik NV2 TDMA based protocol.

Step 1 The first port of call for configuring any


Mikrotik device is to manually change your systems IP
address in order to communicate with the
Mikrotik equipment effectively, in this How To I will be
using 192.168.88.2 as my system IP initially and then
swapping back to DHCP once the link is established.
(note that Mikrotik devices are configured on
192.168.88.1 for Ether 1 from the manufacturer by
default).

Step 2 Once a static IP has been set on your computer you will be able to log in and configure the Mikrotik
Wireless device using the free Winbox tool provided by Mikrotik HERE, there is also a web gui tool (WebFig) but
we will not be using that for this How To. Once Winbox is downloaded and launched you will be able to see your
first Mikrotik Wireless device under the neighbours tab (only plug in one device directly into your system at a
time for initial configuration). If the device does not immediately appear, press the Refresh button.
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Step 3 Connect to the first wireless device using its default IP of 192.168.88.1 default username will be admin
with no password set. Once connected a new window will appear with many options, see image below for
reference.
Step 4 Now that we are logged into the Mikrotik we can begin configuring it for use in our
PTP link, the first one we are going to configure is the access point which might be plugged
directly into a switch in the main office, or a broadband router at home. To enable us to
transparently bridge Layer 2 traffic across the link, we are going to bridge the ethernet and
the wireless interfaces together. Doing this will also allow a DHCP server to assign the
Mikrotik a unique Network IP which will allow for easy configuration in the future on your
internal network, which may not be on the same 192.168.88.0/24 network. To create a
bridge simply select bridge from the left menu, a new window will appear within Winbox.
Select the + symbol to create a new bridge and give it a meaning full name e.g. Wireless
bridge.

Step 5 Now that we have a bridge we have to assign the interfaces to it, on a Mikrotik SXT or Netmetal you
normally have 2 interfaces, namely wlan1 and Ether1-local. An OmniTik for example will have more ethernet
interfaces. To assign interfaces to the bridge simply select the ports tab under the Bridge window and use the +
to add the required interfaces, for this SXT I have assigned both ether1-local and wlan1 to the new bridge.

Step 6 Now that we have a working bridge we need to instruct that bridge to receive an IP address from the
DHCP server/router, to do this select IP from the left hand menu followed by DHCP Client then + to add a new
client interface, next select the bridge interface that we created earlier. Nothing will happen at this stage
providing the Mikrotik is directly connected to your system. (Once were finished, we will remove the static IP
currently on ether1-local).

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Step 7 Now its time to configure the Wireless interface on our Mikrotik to broadcast a secure wireless signal
for our station side to connect to. This can be done by selecting Wireless from the left hand menu followed by
double clicking wlan1-gateway from the interface list (normally only 1 Wlan interface is listed but its actual
name may change depending on the type of MikroTik RouterBoard). This will bring up a new window with many
options, select the wireless tab within the new window and then click on Advanced mode. More options will now
appear but dont panic! First thing we should configure is the frequency mode which will automatically bring the
Mikrotik into Compliance with local regulatory guidelines (set by Ofcom in the UK), ensure that Frequency Mode
is set to regulatory-domain and the county is set to the country that the Mikrotik will be operating in. In this case,
I have selected United Kingdom. Once this is done simple mode can be re-selected or you can continue to work
in Advanced mode.
Step 8 Still in the wireless tab under the wireless interface configuration window change the Mode to ap
bridge and the SSID to something appropriate, I used Mikrotik PTP. If the SXT only has a Level 3 license, then
the mode ap bridge is not available, so select bridge instead. For a point to point system, there is no
difference between ap bridge and bridge wireless modes. For point to multi-point, you will need a MikroTik
RouterBoard wireless product with a Level 4 license. Wireless protocol should now be changed to nv2, by doing
this simple change we have added a substantial layer of reliability to the wireless signal we are producing
compared to using 802.11 WiFi mode. No conventional wireless client such as laptop or phone can
communicate on the NV2 protocol as they dont understand it only Mikrotik devices can use NV2. (Note
that there are also no device drivers available for Windows, Linux or Mac OSX as the NV2 mode is a proprietary
TDMA based system).

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Step 9 To add a significant amount of extra security to the link we are creating, navigate to the NV2 tab under
the wireless interface configuration window, tick the security box and enter in a Preshared key of your choosing,
click apply when done. NV2 will then switch to encrypting the wireless data using AES.
Step 10 The first Mikrotik is now ready and can be plugged in to the main network (its wise to delay actually
mounting this unit, until the second unit is
connected and tested). Plug in the
second Mikrotik direct to your computer
(this will be the Station device for the
remote end we are connecting to) and
repeat steps 1-7 on this second device.
Step 11 The mode for this Mikrotik
shoudl be set to station bridge with all
other settings remaining the same as last
time with the SSID set to the same as
before and Wireless protocol set to nv2.
Select the NV2 tab and enter the same
AES preshared key as you did on the last
device, Select apply.

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Step 12 (Testing) If everything has gone to


plan with the previous steps we should now
have a wireless link between the 2 Mikrotik
devices, therefore we will now test this link.
Ensure that the AP end configured earlier is
plugged into your main network and leave the
station end device plugged into your computer.
Do not connect the station client end into the
same network as your AP device, otherwise
when the wireless connects, it will create a
broadcast storm! To see if the devices have
connected open a winbox connection to the
device you have plugged in and select
Wireless from the left hand menu, select the
Registration table and you will see the
connection in this window, if nothing is
displayed please go over the previous steps.

Next remove the static IPs set on each of the two devices ether1 interfaces and also the fixed IP on your
computer (see step 1). Your computer should now be served an IP address over the wireless link from your own
DHCP server. Providing the AP is connected to your main network which also serves the internet you will now
have full internet access subject to any network access restrictions and policies already in affect. Both Mikrotik
devices will also have received an IP address from the DHCP Server with means that you will be able to winbox
to either device once they connected to the same network and the wireless link is connected.
Step 13 Mount both devices in the respective locations and angle them towards each other ensuring full radio
line of site (remember just because YOU can see the other end with your eyes, does not mean the same thing
as the radios being able to see each other. Read up on Fresnel Zone!) For the best connection, there are LEDs
on the rear of Mikrotik PTP devices with can aid in precise positioning by indicating signal strength.

https://blog.linitx.com/howto-building-building-ptp-links-mikrotik-wireless-products/

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