Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien


  • Just received my Alien (Solo) and went through the setup process. My Alien Router is working, but it's not getting the speeds that I feel I should be seeing.

    It appears that the Alien Router receives only half (almost exactly) of what my Modem is doing. If I do a speed test (Using Speedtest by Ookla) my Modem is pulling 830/35/4 (The Modem is hardwired directly to my iMac). When I do a speed test on the Alien, it pulls 512/23/21 (The Alien is wired modem to switch to Alien).

    Those results are down/up/ping.

    I have received my 2nd Alien and will be connecting it today. Gonna do a test by removing the 1st Alien from the switch and going directly from the modem.


  • So I removed the 1st Alien from the switch and came straight off the Modem.....no change.

    Connected the 2nd Alien the same as the 1st.....same results as the first.

    My WiFi speed on my iPhone 11 is about 90% of the speed that the Alien picks up.

    I’m sure there is a setting that I need to change in order to get the full speeds.

    Both Aliens are hard wired through the gigabit switch


  • @Arcane-ThunderX said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    (The Alien is wired modem to switch to Alien)

    Do you have your Alien in bridge mode? Assuming that the modem is a modem/router combo since the switch is placed between the two devices, you will want to make sure Alien is in bridge to prevent a double NAT.

    Also, just to check, when you said you performed a speed test on the Alien, was this the onboard speed test or a 3rd party speed test like you used when connected to the modem? There have been some reports of the onboard speed test delivering inaccurate results, so I would recommend a 3rd party test like speedtest.net or fast.com to verify.


  • So to clarify.
    I am using the Onboard Alien Speedtest, which is showing only slightly fast speeds than Speedtest by Ookla on my iPhone 11pro Max.

    The 1st Alien is not in bridge mode because I have disabled all of the WiFi Signals from the Cable Modem. The 1st alien is driving the only WiFi Signal and the 2nd Alien is pushing that same network.

    The 2nd Alien (Acting like a Mesh) has a Received Signal Level of -55 dBm, the Mesh Point Band is 5GHz WiFi 6, the Ethernet backbone is set to Off.


  • @Arcane-ThunderX said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    I have disabled all of the WiFi Signals from the Cable Modem

    If you have only disabled the WiFi from the modem, then it is not in a complete bridge mode and the modem/router as well as Alien are both serving DHCP and have their firewall enabled, which creates a double NAT scenario. If you do fully bridge the modem/router combo, the ethernet cable coming from the modem will have to go directly into the Alien, because it will only be able to deliver one IP address, and you do not want that address to be consumed by the switch.

    The second Alien as a mesh sounds like it is configured properly, so no change there is needed.


  • Let me make sure I understand what you are saying.

    Both the Cable Modem and the 1st Alien Router should be placed in Bridge Mode?

    Then....

    1. Access the Cable Modem Settings and switch it to Full Bride Mode.
    2. Hardwire the 1st Alien Router directly from the Cable Modem to the Alien Router (Bypassing the Switch).
    3. Access the 1st Alien Router Settings and place it in Bridge Mode.

    After all of that is complete....would it be better to hardwire the 2nd Alien Router Directly from the 1st Alien Router?


  • @Arcane-ThunderX said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    Both the Cable Modem and the 1st Alien Router should be placed in Bridge Mode?

    No, only one needs to be placed in bridge mode, either the modem/router combo or AmpliFi. But just disabling the WiFi from the modem/router combo is not bridge mode. Mainly I was just clarifying because if you are using a switch between the modem and the Alien, then your modem cannot be placed into bridge mode because it would need to be your primary DHCP to assign addresses to the switch, then out to any other connected devices.

    If you do place the modem/router into a full bridge mode, then you would not be able to connect your switch directly to the modem, but instead it would have to go: Modem > Alien > Switch > 2nd Alien


  • OK. 1st Alien Router is in Bridge Mode. Setup is like this:

    Modem Port #1 > iMac
    Modem Port #2 > Switch > 1st Alien (1st Alien in Bridge Mode)
    Switch > 2nd Alien (Mesh Point) (2nd Alien is a Full Alien)

    Speedtest Format: Download(mbpd) / Upload(mbps) / Ping(ms) / Signal Strength(dBm) / Router Signal Strength

    iMac Speedtest - 864 / 14.8 / 7 / -37
    iPhone 11pro Max Speedtest @ 1st Alien - 480 / 19.5 / 11 / -38 / 70%
    iPhone 11pro Max Speedtest @ 2nd Alien - 283 / 18.9 / 14 / -37 / 100%

    Any suggestions at this point in the testing to improve the WiFi Speed?


  • @Arcane-ThunderX said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    iPhone 11pro Max Speedtest @ 1st Alien - 480 / 19.5 / 11 / -38 / 70%
    iPhone 11pro Max Speedtest @ 2nd Alien - 283 / 18.9 / 14 / -37 / 100%

    The first speed test, sounds like it could be accurate just because of the 70% connection strength. However, the mesh point being able to communicate via WiFi 6 should be giving you better performance. What does the mesh point speed test give you performance wise?

    After running these tests, you can download support files and we can review them to see if we can help identify whats going on with your system.


  • Using the Native Alien Speedtest:

    Speedtest Format: Download(mbpd) / Upload(mbps) / Ping(ms)

    1st Alien - 537 / 36.7 / 17

    I don't see an option to run a speedtest for the 2nd Alien(MeshPoint) from within the app and the 2nd Alien Speedtest (LED Screen) is not remotely accurate


  • @UI-Brett said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    The first speed test, sounds like it could be accurate just because of the 70% connection strength

    How does one run a speed test from the Alien for a specific device, phone, tablet, etc? I only see a mechanism for running a test for the ISP speed connection to the Alien. The only device speed tests I’m able to run are the app ones on a specific device itself.


  • I am having a similar problem, just got centurylink fiber with gig up and down and I have there modem/router in bridge mode and connected directly to my alien and a switch connected to the alien for all my other wired devices. When I do an isp speed test on the alien I am getting full gig speed and when I do one on speedtest.net I also get full gig up and down wired. But my problem is the wireless signal I only get about 420-450 down and 650 up the up is what i would thunk i should be able to get for the down using my Galaxy Note 10+ in wifi 6. I switched from xfinity and just friday when I did a speed test on my phone I was getting 650-700 down now since the only change was the modem and isp why would I not get the same speeds from centurylink


  • @John-Pappas said in Speed Issues and troubleshooting my 1st Alien:

    How does one run a speed test from the Alien for a specific device

    You cannot do this, the way you would test an individual device is with a 3rd party speed test like fast.com


  • @Mickey-Dezell It could have something to do with the passthrough (bridge mode) Option with Century link, but I am not sure, especially since wired is still working perfectly. It is strange that everything was working and all you have done now is switched providers and modems. For a rest, you could place the modem/router back into primary router mode and place Alien into bridge mode to see if speeds are any different.


  • Hi @John-Pappas - some of the Duckware testing methods might interest you...

    For an overview...
    https://www.duckware.com/tech/wifi-in-the-us.html

    https://www.duckware.com/mcsspy/index.html
    https://www.duckware.com/speedtest/index.html
    https://www.duckware.com/tech/router-wan-to-lan-throughput-test.html

    I have not used the app personally myself, but I believe the WiFi SweetSpots app measures the PHY link speeds from a client to an access points from any given location - it is not measuring the network throughput speed across the access point, just the connection speed


  • @Derek-Saville Thanks Derek. Those articles are a little above my head but they do show me why it’s normal, due to various circumstances, to not be able to measure the same speeds over wifi as the speed that the isp provides. There have been various threads and posts here complaining about not seeing the same download speeds on their devices as the isp connection speed is to the router. Those articles would help to clear up some of that confusion.

    I did download that app and it looks as if it would be helpful to determine good or better router placement locations. That’s not critical in my situation since my router is fairly centrally located in my apartment, and about 20 feet from where we use our devices the most. Interestingly my subscribed internet speed tier with Verizon Fios is their 200/200 service. However over wifi I would see 300/300+ using the Speedtest app on my phone and ipad. Verizon tends to boost their delivered speeds above the quoted tier. I found that to be the case when I had Comcast for internet previously.

    Currently Fios is providing gig connections to customers through the end of June. With my previous router, an Apple Time Capsule, my Speedtest results were in the high 400s to mid 500s with the gig connection, depending on the server that the Speedtest app was using for the test. I was curious to see how the Alien would stack up to those results. They’ve been the same, so I’ve concluded, as those articles point out, that the limiting factor is more device related than a flaw with the router. Although with my Apple router I was able to manually select 5GHz network channels and found that 149 gave the best coverage and performance in my condo apartment. The Alien does not allow that manual selection on wifi 6 networks so I don’t know if that channel would change anything. When I scan for networks the Alien is currently using 157 for my 5 network. Initially it used 161 but I’ve rebooted it once since first setting it up and afterwards 157 had been selected. But I’m not having any issues so that’s not an problem.


  • @John-Pappas one thing to keep in mind when using Speedtest is to find a server that can handle the gig speeds. Several users have had problems with this and report slow WiFi speed when in fact it’s the Speedtest server that cant keep up. Try to find one that has fiber in its name as those are typically gig speed servers.


  • @drummajo3 Oh I try a variety of them. The range I see is always between high 400s to 500s. The closer servers almost always give a higher result. Even those with any kind of fiber designation will give lower results the further they are from your location.


  • I am having the exact same issue. 1GB to the house. I have a 3 Alien setup. My 1st Alien or Prime is connected to the modem and only showing half of my available speed. Alien is in Bridge mode also, as the modem is a router as well. My modem/Router has two LAN ports. The first port is running to a gigabit switch. Hanging off the switch I have pc that gets 940-980 consistently. The second port of the modem/router is connecting to my 1st Alien. Speeds from the on-screen speed test average 500mb. Basically half of my available speed. I hope there is a setting I am missing. If not, I will be returning the Alien device and going back to my Orbi AX4200 setup.


  • @m-Dot i am in the same boat here. connect my laptop to my fibre modem and i get 800 mbps in both directions but when i do the on board speed test i get 550 max in both directions.... looking more and more like a device i will return


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