Are you wondering how to set up the AT&T BGW320-500 bridge mode? This read covers everything!
If you’re attempting to set up the bridge mode on your BGW320-500 gateway, we will provide all the necessary steps to enhance and maximize the network capabilities.
In addition, we will also learn the benefits of the bridge mode and how to customize it for your networking preferences.
To set up “Bridge” mode on AT&T BGW320-500, select the primary and secondary router and then access the web GUI of the AT&T gateway.
To understand more about the process, remain invested in our guide!
How Does the BGW Bridge Mode Work?
The AT&T bridge mode enables two routers to work together instead of creating a conflict, which improves the performance and expands the coverage.
In bridge mode, one of the paired routers is assigned as the “Primary” that handles the traffic, and the other works as a switch.
You must differentiate between an “IP Passthrough” setting and the “Bridge” mode available for your AT&T gateway.
Both features have identical parameters but can affect the network device by changing and re-adjusting the static IP address settings.
You will need the following information for setting up the Bridge:
What is a DHCP-Configured Device?
The device you wish to pair up with your BGW320-500 must be configured in DHCP mode to be compatible with the bridge.
In other words, a DHCP-enabled router is actively “listening” for an IP address to be assigned by a primary network device existing in the same local network.
Thus, if you have another gateway or a modem that has bypassed “DHCP,” you cannot add the device during the bridge setup of the BGW320-500 gateway.
Knowing this, let’s see the guide!
How to Setup BGW320-500 Bridge Mode Easily?
Tip: Follow the steps in consecutive order!
1. Select Primary and Secondary Router
The bridging mode connects two routers and makes them operate as one by sharing their network credentials and pairing up the connectivity.
In any bridging configuration, one of the network devices must be recognized as the “Primary” unit over the “Secondary” unit.
How To Identify the Router’s Specifications?
Every router’s specifications are written on the back of the box once delivered.
If each router’s box is in possession, check on both backs for their specs and choose the more powerful one for the primary.
The other one will be secondary for maximum efficiency of your bridge mode setup.
Here are some of the most essential router specs you must note down:
- The router’s antennas are responsible for the Wi-Fi coverage.
- The operating frequency and the number of connectivity bands.
- The speed of the router’s connectivity is measured in Mbps/s.
- The type of security and the level of the unit’s firewall encryption.
The router works with packages that it receives from the modem and then redirects the packages to all locally connected devices.
It is essential to know whether the information’s pathing is correct, as this could impact the physical/wireless bond of the bridged devices.
How to Select Primary/Secondary Router?
After verifying that the network devices are compatible, you can assign the primary network device easily through the “Wi-Fi” configuration of the AT&T gateway.
All you have to do is assign the Wi-Fi credentials of the primary router’s preferred Wi-Fi network and then save.
Here’s how to assign the primary router in easy steps:
- Start by opening the secondary router’s web GUI panel.
- After that, navigate to the “Access Point Mode” section.
- Set the “SSID” and password to match the existing ones.
- Finally, save the changes and exit the router’s configuration.
Note: Not saving the changes will not assign the secondary router to your BGW’s network!
2. Unplug the Secondary Router’s Service
Since bridging bonds up the network connections of two compatible router devices, they don’t need to be connected with an external service individually.
The bridging protocols will not be met for as long as both network devices remain connected to a service outlet simultaneously.
How to Manage the Old/Current Network Device?
If you’ve just subscribed to AT&T and bought the new BGW320-500, your current network device is still connected to the service.
It is essential to note which coaxial outlets are set to transfer the AT&T service, install the BGW320, and unplug your current network device.
If you consider the BGW-320 the less powerful router than the second bridging unit, unplug it from service and leave your current network device connected.
Note: Leaving both devices connected to the service will not allow the bridge mode to activate!
3. Connect the Two Bridge AT&T Routers
When two routers work separately, they conflict because of the different IP addresses due to Network Access Translation (NAT).
This creates a public network to a computer in a private network, and when two routers operate with the same NAT, confusion in translation occurs.
How to Connect Two AT&T Routers Physically?
An Ethernet cable is used to establish a hard-wire connection between two network units and make them compatible for bridging.
Here’s how to set the BGW locally for bridging:
- Find an available Ethernet port on the back of the BGW320.
- Connect an Ethernet cable to the port of the BGW gateway.
- Identify an available “LAN” port on the second router device.
- Plug the Ethernet cable of the BGW320 into the second router.
- Verify that the cable connection is secure and test the devices.
How to Connect Two AT&T Routers Wirelessly?
To bridge routers wirelessly, set the primary one to channel 1 or 6 and the secondary to channel 11 so they don’t interrupt each other in transcribing data.
After that, follow up by configuring the network settings by following the other steps in the article.
Tip: You can quickly pair the secondary router unit if it has an in-built “WPS” button!
4. Access the AT&T Web User Interface
After establishing a physical/wireless connection between the AT&T routers, the next step is to access the AT&T router’s interface.
Keep in mind that the default gateway will be required for accessing the network customizations of the AT&T devices and configuring the bridge mode.
Here’s how to access the AT&T web user interface easily:
- Open an online browser on a locally connected device.
- Insert “126.96.36.199.254” in the address field and search.
- Once on the login page, sign in to your user account.
- When you’re on the page, tap the “Advanced” button.
There may appear a Modem Access Code prompt, in which case you should look for it on the back of the modem with a yellow sticker.
Then, type the code and click Continue to sign in fully.
5. Enable the AT&T Bridge Mode
To finalize the setting up of the ATT BGW 320-500 bridge mode, you can follow two methods to set up the bridge mode.
“Bridge” mode is a shared definition that can be achieved by setting up a PPL connection or configuring the broadband DSL line of the AT&T gateway unit.
Info: Both methods are equally effective in creating a bridged router network!
Method #1 PPL Connection
Here’s how to enable the PPL connection from the settings:
- Access the web GUI of the AT&T gateway device.
- Click the PPL Location button on the left sidebar.
- Select PPL on the computer, gateway, or router.
- Finally, click the Save Changes button found below.
Method #2 Broadband DSL Line
Here’s how to enable bridge mode through the DSL Line:
- First, find and click on the “Broadband DSL Line” tab.
- Choose “Configure Connection” on the right sidebar.
- Click the “Protocol” menu and select “Bridge Internet.”
- Finally, click “Save Changes” and “Restart Connection.”
Reminder: Verify that the modem is updated to the latest firmware available!
6. Test the AT&T Bridge Mode
Once the setup is complete and the routers are aligned, move next to the secondary router and open a free speed test online to check the establishment.
Save the results from the secondary router’s extended Wi-Fi and compare the upload speed while standing next to the primary unit.
If the speed results match, the bridge mode has been successfully activated, and the network devices are working correctly to extend the Wi-Fi coverage.
Tip: Check the furthest rooms from the routers to ensure the coverage improvement.
To set up BGW320-500 bridge mode, you need to specify the primary and the secondary routers and connect them physically or wirelessly.
Then, set up the bridge mode through the AT&T gateway’s user interface (admin tool) and test the extended Wi-Fi connectivity.
If there’s an issue with the setup, contact AT&T customer support for more information!
Kevin has over five years of experience working in various Tech startups and providing Technical solutions. He has contributed to many Tech publications and websites.