UniFi AP AC Lite as a Router on openWrt

Hello everyone,

This is post is more of a note to self, so it probably is more helpful to me than it is to you… If for some reason you want to use your Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC Lite as a router with the Ethernet port as a WAN port and the LAN being wireless only. I wouldn’t recommend this if you have internet speeds faster than 50mbps… (this is just a ball park guesstimate. I have not done benchmarks to confirm this.)

I wrote this for myself to see if I can get fq_codel working over wireless according to “Ending the Anomaly: Achieving Low Latency and Airtime Fairness in WiFi” research paper by Dave Taht and Co. The UniFi AP AC lite is a good candidate because it has wireless chips that utilize the ath10k drivers mentioned. Apparently, it works great using the “ath10k-firmware-qca988x-CT” version of the ath10k firmware.

As for flashing the UniFi with openWrt I followed this guide: https://blog.cavebeat.org/2018/01/install-openwrt-lede-17-01-4-on-ubiquiti-uap-ac-lite/ with two changes

1. I used ap-ac-lite3.4.8.bin as the downgrade firmware.

2. And I used the generic developmental snapshot for the unifi ac lite under ar71xx https://downloads.openwrt.org/snapshots/targets/ar71xx/generic/

3. UAPACLITE <– This is the 01/26/2019 snapshot if you didn’t want to use the latest one from the link in #2. Includes official recovery firmware if needed.

Package install order for luci web gui:

uhttpd
luci-app-opkg
luci-proto-ppp
luci-proto-ipv6 x
luci-app-firewall
liblua5
libiwinfo
luci-lib-nixio
luci-lib-ip
luci-lib-jsonc
rpcd_2018
rpcd-mod-rrdns
lua
libubus-lua
liblucihttp0
liblucihttp-lua
luci-base
luci-mod-network
luci-mod-system
luci-mod-status
luci-mod-admin
luci-theme-bootstrap
luci_git

If you ever brick you can always follow this: https://help.ubnt.com/hc/en-us/articles/204910124-UniFi-TFTP-soft-recovery-for-bricked-access-point

After flashing openWrt on Unifi AP

Bridge mode to UniFi. Ethernet wire from LAN to PC. POE to UniFi.

On PC. Set static IP 192.168.1.X (X can be between 2 to 150 but cannot be 20).

Set subnet mask to 255.255.255.0

Connect to UniFi by typing 192.168.1.1 in browser.

Default login is root///root.

Change password.

Setting up WiFi To configure UniFi Wirelessly

Enable both WiFis.

Connect to WiFi (WiFi adapter on PC must be dynamic IP address). When WiFi works. Disconnect Ethernet wire from LAN to PC.

We will now configure the UniFi via wireless. Go back to 192.168.1.1 and login.

Removing eth0 from LAN network

Under Network > Intefaces > LAN > Physical Settings

Remove eth0 from Interface. There should only be two WiFi radios remaining on LAN… wlan0 and wlan1.

Creating WAN interface as eth0

Under Network > Interfaces… Add new interface…

Name of new interface: WAN

Protocol: DHCP client

Cover the following interface: eth0

Submit…

Go back to Network > Interfaces.

Under “WAN” click edit. Then click on the Firewall Settings tab.

Create / Assign firewall-zone choose WAN

Save & Apply.

Congrats UniFI AP AC Lite is now effectively a wireless router.

 

Dumb AP Mode

This mode is for when you have a primary router as the DHCP server so you just want to bridge this AP to that router. Source: https://openwrt.org/docs/guide-user/network/wifi/dumbap

Going back to initial openWrt settings

firstboot

reboot

 

 

 

 

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