How to Turn an Old Router Into a Wireless Bridge?

Transform your old router into a wireless bridge effortlessly with OpenWrt firmware, connecting networks wirelessly and connectivity.

by Mathelene

Updated Apr 02, 2024

How to Turn an Old Router Into a Wireless Bridge?

What is a Wireless Bridge?

A wireless bridge is a connection that links together different local area networks (LANs) using Wi-Fi, creating a single, larger network where all devices can communicate and access the internet. The bridge removes the need to install lengthy Ethernet connections by using wireless signals to connect the LANs in place of physical wires, saving money and effort.

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This setup is helpful for expanding network coverage to locations where wiring is challenging or connecting distant LANs.

How to Turn an Old Router Into a Wireless Bridge?

Initial setup

  • Connect your old router to the main router.

  • Plug your computer into the old router using a cable and turn off Wi-Fi.

Download OpenWrt Firmware

  • Go to and find your router model.

  • Download the firmware files for your router.

Install OpenWrt Firmware

  • Follow the instructions given by OpenWrt's website to install the firmware on your router.

Set up the Wireless Bridge

  • Install a software called luci-proto-relay on your router.

  • Setup the old router to have a fixed IP address and to stop sharing IP addresses.

  • Link the old router to the Wi-Fi network of the main router.

  • To build a bridge, link the wired and Wi-Fi connections to the old router.

Complete setup

  • Check that the two connections are located in the same network area.

  • Save your changes and apply them.

  • Disconnect the cable between the old and main routers.

How to Use a Second Router as an Extender?

  • First, update the old router's software.

  • Then, connect one end of an Ethernet cable to a slot on your main router, and the other end to a special slot on the second router.

  • You now need to access the second router's settings. You can generally do this by entering the special address and login details.

  • Find the wireless settings and look for something called "AP Mode". This efficiently turns the second router into a booster, increasing the Wi-Fi range.

How to Set Up a Router as a Repeater?

  • First, make sure your main router is on and sending out its Wi-Fi signal.

  • Then, update the software on your old router.

  • Next, go into the settings of your old router. You can usually do this by typing in a special web address in a browser or using an app.

  • Look in the menu of the old router for "Repeater Mode" or "Wireless Bridge Mode." 

  • Choose your main router's Wi-Fi network from the list and enter the password.

  • Save your changes.

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