Replacing Vodafone HG659 with pfSense while retaining Wireless AP functionality.

Goal

The goal here is to have pfSense pick up the routing/firewall responsibilities while keeping the Huawei functioning as a wireless access point. This isn’t a guide to pfSense so it’s up to you to check that you have internet access after connecting a network cable between your pfSense box and your modem.

Important stuff. You will temporarily lose internet access while switching over so it would be wise to advise any teenagers at home that their lives are about to be temporarily ruined. Before continuing check that you will still have access to the router as you will need to access it.

Step 1. Login as Admin

Before you do anything you will need to check you can login to your HG659 router as Admin. To do this you need the last 8 digits of your serial number, located on a sticker on the back of the router.

Access your router login page via a web browser. The address is usually “192.168.1.1”. If it isn’t then you probably don’t need this guide! Next your will need to login using the username “Admin” and password “@*last8digitsofyourserialnumber*”. This will log you into the root account which allows access to extra settings that are usually only required by your ISP.

Step 2. Bridge Ethernet

Once logged in navigate to Internet > Internet Settings > Internet_Ethernet. Click Edit. Click the Connection type dropdown box (default is IP routing (IP) and select Bridged. Click Save.

This will allow the HG659 to pass your internet connection on to wireless clients.

Step 3. Disable DHCP Server

If you are switching to pfSense then the chances are that you will use that for it’s routing function. To disable routing on the HG659 navigate to Home Network > LAN Interface > DHCP Server. Untick the DHCP server box and click Save.

That’s it! You can now setup IP’s etc in pfSense and as long as you have a network cable attached to your HG659 you will retain wireless access using your existing SSID and password. If any devices have problems receiving a new IP address from pfSense try restarting them. If that doesn’t work then restart pfSense. If that doesn’t work then google is your only hope!

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