Friday, October 7, 2011

Replacing my crappy Movistar fiber optic router

Sant Cugat now has 50 megabits fiber connectivity! I’m happy that now my VOIP calls to the US are crystal clear (even with video conferencing), and the kids are happy that we can now download a whole movie in 120 seconds.

The only downside is that Telefonica gives you a really crappy router that connects via ethernet to the fiber optic converter. For some reason it drops connections after some period of time, meaning that my VPN connection never lasted more than a couple minutes.

At first, I though I could replace it with one of my collection of old routers, but unfortunately Telefonica was too clever for this: in order to provide IPTV, VOIP and other services, they require all ethernet packets destined for the Internet to be set with a VLAN Id of 6.

So the right setup is:

username: adslppp@telefonicanetpa
password: adslppp
VLAN id: 6

Unfortunately almost no routers inexpensive routers support VLANs, so I had to buy myself a router. I chose the Netgear 3500L (buy it from, which although it doesn’t support VLANs out of the box, does allow you to install the Tomato firmware, which does.

Once you’ve installed the new firmware, set up the PPPOE connection, but you need to log in via telnet (remember the username is root, not admin) and set the following options (the UI VLAN screen doesn’t work with this router):

nvram set vlan6hwname=et0
nvram set vlan6ports=0t 8
nvram set wan_ifname=vlan6
nvram set wan_ifnameX=vlan6
nvram commit

And you should be good. The firmware has a lot of other nice features, including parental monitoring, bandwidth allocation, etc. All in all, I’m happy with Tomato.

In case you are wondering, I’ve tried earlier with DD-WRT firmware instead of Tomato, but for some reason it just wouldn’t work for me (it kept resetting the vlan back to 2 every time I rebooted).


Anonymous said...

Hi - after 18 months of pain of poor internet coverage (poor ADSL, slow satellite, shaky 3G signal) in Las Planas, I finally got the Movistar Fibra Optica this week-end...

Very happy but agree the provided router is not very good. I will definetly look into replicating your set-up.

Question : In the meantime, I am trying to configure the Movistar one, but it seems that the documented default username and password of the device 1234,1234 don't work.

Any clue how it has been set?


santcugat said...

You need to reconfigure your router via the Telefonica website. It allows you to reset the password to one of your choice.

Anonymous said...

Hi, i am living in Sant Cugat and just got 50mb fiber optic. i have followed your suggestion and got NRW3500L and upgrade it to Tomato. but i cant get the intrnet to work. any advice? or where i can get more infromation.

santcugat said...

Can you explain which steps you took? You can email me at lostinsantcugat @ gmail (dot) com.

Forrest Family said...

Greetings - I'm a new arrival in Barcelona and admittedly not very tech savvy.

The MoviStar internet is horrible. We're only 40 feet from the router and can't stream a thing to the tv in the living room. Has anyone ever tried hooking up an (Apple) Airport Extreme to this system? Any bets on whether it will work?

We've paid the €100 monthly charge for the MoviStar "tres" package (or, in order to get the €39 fibre optic service, we were told we needed the €14 phone line, then at that point with the €16 IVA we thought "what's another €30 for rubbish TV") - anyway it alls adds up. Any advice would be appreciated.

Anonymous said...

You are my HERO

This saved me hours of technical support phone calls in my terrible Spanish.

I owe you several beers.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! I already spent 3 days configuring my Cisco router. I was trying to reverse engineer the movistar router and rebuild its WAN setup on my Cisco 1841. I saw their WAN interfaces were named eth0.2, so i already suspected a VLAN config. However, VLAN ID 2 did not work, nor did 1, 3 and 4. Without your post, I never would have thought of trying 6. 6 Worked, then add PPPOE config via a Dialer interface and the username and password you mentioned. Worked.

santcugat said...

Happy it worked for you!

Christian H. said...

Hey, that was a great tip!
I have Movistar Fibra Optice 100/10 since more than a year.
I use a FritzBox to have covered all my international VoIP numbers and run it behind the Movistar router.
I was not happy to have this inbetween
Since I read your comment I simply changed a line in my settings - I was missing the VLAN ID - the rest is the same than ADSL.
And it works!
All my VoIP,Spanish, American, UK, German, and several cheap providers run excellent.

Thanks a lot again, it can be so easy :)

Birte F said...

I am happy to see that Christian H managed to get a fritzbox working on movistar fibra. I would like to use my fritzbox 7490 as well. When you set the VLAN ID to 6 on the Fritzbox could you then eliminate the Movistar router or will you still have to use it in brige mode?
Which LAN port are you using on the Fritzbox?
Thanks in advance. Rgds Birte.

santcugat said...

If you set the vlanid to 6 for the WAN port, then you don't need to use the Movistar router anymore.

Birte F said...

Great news thanks, I will give it a try.
Which LAN-port do you use in the Fritzbox to connect to the ONT? Is it LAN1?

Birte F said...

Thank you for great help - it works now, VLANID = 6 and direct connected to the ONT from LAN1. The internet light on the fritxbox is not on but it Works eventhough. Very pleased that you shared this information.