Suddenlink SMC8014WN Stupidity

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Well this is interesting. I was considering becoming a reseller for Suddenlink Cable since I’ve been very pleased with their internet service. However, if you “rent” the SMC8014WN Wireless Modem/Router/AP from them – BEWARE!

Suddenlink has locked down the firmware in the SMC8014WN so that most of the typical features from any $60 router/access point from BestBuy or OfficeDepot or NewEgg – are simply not available. That’s insane.

WEP as a security measure is so broken that your (and everyone else’s) kid sister can easily circumvent it,” said computer security researcher Ralf-Philipp Weinmann, co-author of the aircrack-ptw tool that can crack WEP in minutes.

This unit is running a locked down firmware that doesn’t allow you to use anything but WEP encryption. As I’ve mentioned before, never use WEP encryption. This encryption algorithm was broken more than 10 years ago. The only exception would be legacy hardware that you simply cannot replace. In that case, you should put your legacy device on it’s own subnet separate from everything else.

You should ALWAYS USE WPA (or WPA2) encryption with a sufficiently strong passphrase. WPA + AES is currently unbroken and susceptible only to brute-force dictionary attacks, which all encryption schemes are. In other words, you can only break it by slamming a zillion password combinations at it and hoping for sheer luck.

You also can’t change the SSID. While changing or hiding the SSID does not increase security, it can make things more convenient.

Here is the best part. I called Suddenlink tech support just to make sure my findings were correct. A decent and knowledgeable tech support guy got on the phone and confirmed my findings.

Suddenlink Support: Suddenlink ships those modems with WEP to support the xBox which is WEP only. We lockdown the systems to make it easier for us to support users.

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So I asked him simply: “Just to be clear, Suddenlink has shipped locked down devices with a broken security algorithm just to support the old xBox?”

Suddenlink guy: “Yes, that is correct.”

Hmm – maybe they haven’t heard of the DLink DGL-3420 which allows you to run WPA on the old xBox? If one of the Principal Tech Specialists at Microsoft thinks WEP is trivially crackable, maybe Suddenlink should listen?

Hmm – maybe Suddenlink should rethink their corporate policy on their users’ security? Maybe they shouldn’t send installers out who are morons and know nothing about networks nor security?

By the way, Suddenlink rapes you for $10/month until the end of your service for this piece of junk.

Solution: Purchase a Motorola Surfboard Modem and a Linksys Wireless Router. Simple. Effective. Cheaper. Safer.

84 Responses to Suddenlink SMC8014WN Stupidity

  1. Jason M May 8, 2010 at 8:07 am #

    Well, the only reason the company decided to do it was because so many people were complaining about us not having a wireless modem option. Suddenlink is not in the business of doing networking which is the reason for use not having technicians that are very skilled in that area. People often call us wanting us to support thier router and just want to have something we can support.

    It’s more of a “well, if you insist…” option than something that’s being pushed and made to cater to novice users. Another reason why the firmware is locked. It’s understood that most people will get their own router considering the cost of the unit vs having your own.

    BTW I’m a Technical Support agent and I don’t officially speak on behalf of Suddenlink Communications.

    • rex May 8, 2010 at 9:24 am #

      Hi Jason – I appreciate your response. I know what tech support agents have to deal with. I was a support agent for Bellsouth DSL for over a year, and I currently have over 700 clients (residential and business). My response is not directed at you personally – at least you have answered.

      It would be trivial for Suddenlink to to ship the wireless “modems” non locked-down and pre-configured for WPA with a disclaimer on supporting certain legacy wireless devices. If a support call comes in, you have the customer hit the hard reset button, and you are back to square one. How hard is that? It’s not.

      Another small point – Suddenlink most certainly IS in the business of networks. Do we need to define the internet? Do I need to pull up Suddenlink ads promoting multiple devices?

      When Suddenlink is promoting their device, most users won’t look for another option unless they use or know someone like me. Case in point – my neighbors. Once I explained the downside in security and features and did some simple math, they were ticked off. However, most people will think Suddenlink is providing them with up to date equipment and hey – $10/month sounds like a good deal. Again – I have literally hundreds of residential customers in my business. I know what most typical users think.

      The configuration Suddenlink is using is BAD. Period.

    • Suddenlink Customer April 2, 2014 at 11:16 pm #

      I wouldn’t say that necessarily. I originally had my own router purchased and would have purchased a modem, except I was told by Suddenlink that I had to rent and use their own modem/router and could not use my own and cancel their included installation and rental fees. So, that would appear not to be an enfored company policy of “if you insist”…

  2. Ronbob May 22, 2010 at 3:37 pm #

    Yea I am the Suddenlink employee. I thought is amusing when rex called in. He used almost the exact phrase I did when they told me we were using WEP in training. “You realize any 10yr old can crack WEP in about 10 mins”. LOL, and all to support a very old game system. I can understand why alot of that stuff is locked down though. You don’t need the average user accessing alot of those setting and causing more work for tech support. Kind of like how users in business environments have alor of functions locked out on their PCs (ie the ability to install unauthorized software, change security settings).
    In regards to Jason’s comment “Suddenlink is not in the business of doing networking” he would be wrong. we do not officially support 3rd party routers, but we run CAT5 cable all the time and setup connections for networking. The commercial side does do networking on a regular basis. When I was doing computer consulting I had a real problem with Cox (now Suddenlink) doing networking in my clients homes on a regular basis and causing more troubles than they fixed. Even after it became Suddenlink I was not uncommon for me to get a call from an upset customer where Suddenlink installers made a huge mess of things.
    The wifi is another revenue stream they are trying to cultivate to build business. What I find funny as well, is that Suddenlink is now taking actions to enforce DMCA and shutting down customer for 6 months for repeated violations and bootlegging. Yet their own security on their wifi is so broken that a customer could be easily hacked, and copyrighted material downloaded through no fault of the customer. Seems like a good way to get yourself sued. IF I were a bootlegger, I would subscribe to the service and bootleg only through a wireless connection and then when caught claim it was someone who cracked Suddenlink’s weak key. What is going to be sad, is when they start getting a lot of customers who’s wireless nics will not support WEP at all…and I have seen a few already. They will have to scramble to get all the standards changed and the techs (both phone and field) will have to scramble to accommodate existing customers with new PCs. More work created from not doing it right the first time.

    • rex May 22, 2010 at 3:57 pm #

      I’ve bragged to more than one person that I had actually talked to someone who could hold a decent tech conversation with me. I’m glad you posted.

      If you ever need any help, feel free to ask.

  3. debbie July 9, 2010 at 6:56 pm #

    Well, I just switched to SuddenLink from Verizon and I am looking for a replacement modem. I understand the WEP and hope it won’t be an issue where I am located. Any suggestions as to an easy to install wide range unit to replace the wireless one I am renting for $10?

    • rex July 9, 2010 at 7:20 pm #

      Go get the Motorola Surfboard from BestBuy for about $89 and also buy a good Wireless Access Point / Router. Personally I like the Linksys WRT54GL, which you have to order (can’t get it locally).

      http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833124190

      For about $150 total, you will own what you need. That will pay for itself within the first 15 months, and you will be safer.

    • rex July 9, 2010 at 9:14 pm #

      Forgot to mention about range….

      I don’t care what the box says on your wireless access point, you will NOT get “300 feet” of coverage. Period. Even with N. Typical real-world ranges are about 75-150 feet. Remember, even if your access point will broadcast further, the hardware in your laptop typically won’t. There are also a lot of other factors such as interference, walls, etc, that affect wireless coverage.

      Also, if your laptop or other wireless device only supports G, then you won’t get the additional range benefits that N does provide. You can go ahead and get an N wireless access point if you want, it just won’t really do you any good unless your existing hardware can support it.

      On bandwidth, N won’t make your “internet” any faster. The fastest Suddenlink connection is 20Mbs. Wireless G runs at theoretical 56Mbs depending on signal strength, other devices, etc. Wireless N runs at maximum of 600Mbs – so it will help if you are copying files from one device to another (assuming both support N), but it WILL NOT make your internet connection any faster.

      Hope that helps.

  4. Jeremy November 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    Hey, i have the SMC8014 router and i wanted to know the defult username and password.

    • rex November 11, 2010 at 2:56 pm #

      user: cusadmin
      password: highspeed

  5. Chris howat November 12, 2010 at 2:10 am #

    That user and pass doesn’t work for me. Frustrating.
    Phesto604@gmail.com any help would be appreciated

    • rex November 12, 2010 at 10:53 am #

      Try these:

      USERNAME: cusadmin
      PASSWORD: password

      USERNAME: (blank)
      PASSWORD: highspeed

      You can also try resetting the router, but be aware that any customized settings will be gone.

      • mike January 11, 2011 at 11:50 pm #

        hi i have the same problem (smc8014wn) i tried to get in the config of the router and i tried to put all kinds of usernames and passwords + i tried to reset the router couple times nth changes , please help .
        mike

        • mike January 11, 2011 at 11:52 pm #

          as it says in the manual i have to enter 192.168.0.1 but this is not right too cuse when i checked ipconfig it gives me 192.168.100.1 and it gives me the screan with login and pass and i cant go any further as i said before .

          • rex January 13, 2011 at 10:55 pm #

            I’m not really sure on the username and password unless Suddenlink has modified it from the manufacturer. The ones listed above have worked for me.

            To login to the router, you can do IPCONFIG and then browse to your gateway address.

  6. susan January 12, 2011 at 7:12 pm #

    Just to let everyone know what just happened to my daughter! She has a wireless router that was working fine (not from SuddenLink) that tech support helped her over the phone to set up. It quit working just this afternoon and tech support says the router is the problem. However, when she hooks it up to her friend’s suddenlink modem it works fine. My daughter had an issue where her modem did not work yesterday!!! I really think someone needs to look at this company and see how much they make for the service they refuse to supply.

    • rex January 13, 2011 at 10:59 pm #

      Shoot me an email through my contact page. I’m quite sure I can help.

      http://www.smartergeek.com/contact-me/

    • ohno March 17, 2011 at 11:22 pm #

      suddenlik techs confirmed with me last year that the revisio be modems are faulty. if u still have this issue tell them if u have a revision b and ask for revisio a of this crappy router. best bet is to get the modem itself and setup your ow router with wpa2

  7. SomeTech January 26, 2011 at 2:31 pm #

    I am a technician for suddenlink. My recomendation to people who need a wireless router is to get their own especially if they need the access that you speak of. Our business is to provide internet to the end user. Suddenlink does not train their technicians to support 3rd party routers nor do they teach the tech much in the area of network trouble shooting. I have been there for a short period of time and get calls on a regular basis from technicians that have been in the field for years asking for help figuring out whats wrong with customers networks. I feel suddenlink would be taking a great step if they would train the techs on network trouble shooting however it is a little more then some want to handle. I know suddenlink is providing a great internet service to customers granted there are some policies that drive me nuts being an advanced user. If you get the correct technician there is a way to change the security from WEP to WPA on the SMC routers.

    • ohno March 17, 2011 at 11:26 pm #

      an added note to this post. u can go through this router and reset it and apply wpa and change ur ssid but within an hour or so all these settings will revert to they’re previous state after the third time i concluded they were somehow flashed that way but they only do that when it connects to suddelinks server. as lg as it does not connect to them all ur settings stay the same but u cat get online and keep them for log

  8. Stephanie April 21, 2011 at 6:20 pm #

    So, if I may butt in for a second…does this all equate to me and my family being forced to enter this RIDICULOUSLY long encryption passphrase EVERY TIME we want to use wifi for one of our devices? We have an iPad, Kindle, wireless printer, old mac in the kitchen for music, my mac and my husband’s computer…not to mention the friends that come over and would like to connect their devices (iPad/iPhone) while they’re visiting.

    Is there anyway to change the passphrase to something more manageable but still high security? Please say yes, please say yes….

    • rex April 21, 2011 at 10:15 pm #

      Hi Stephanie,

      No – you don’t have to enter it every time. You just have to enter it once per device. After that, the iPhone, iPad, Kindle, Mac’s, etc, will remember the password set for that SSID (wireless name).

      The only way to make it “more manageable” is to (1) purchase a “normal modem” – not the wireless/gateway/router and (2) purchase your own wireless router from Office Depot, Best Buy, etc and (3) Use WPA or WPA2 for security which allows you to use your own phrase for the key (password) up to 63 characters.

      example password – as a sentence:
      This is my very Long and Difficult one for 2011.

      example password – as a term:
      StephaniePassword2011

      example password – pseudorandom 63 character strong:
      ^zMW1|]IF(@1c+tmX!_>lLs7GJ;0/o@5S9c9vC]e,D3|.3~#[!.Y_V^x1AD#p3H

      Obviously, the longer and more random the password (such as from GRC’s generator), the more secure. However, security is relative to what you are protecting and is also a trade-off with convenience.

  9. BooDa Mowin May 9, 2011 at 6:41 pm #

    So I have been looking through the manual for the SMC8014WN. And I am having a hard time fining how to enable “remote management”. My father just got this router and I wanted to remotely set it up for him so it has the same SSID and passwords as his old one. But how and where do you enable that in this router?

  10. dopiejoe August 13, 2011 at 3:56 am #

    I accidentally stumbled onto this site just now,glad to know I’m not the only one having trouble with Suddenlink.We switched to SL yesterday and opted for the wireless router since we have 2 pc’s and 1 laptop.Here is my problem. I installed the Linux based Ubuntu 10.04 OS on all of them over a year ago,love it,will never go back to MS.The PC’s work fine,can’t get the LT to connect via wireless.The installer could not get it to connect either.The LT has built in wireless,I have updated the drivers for it.There is on line support for Ubuntu but I am not to keen on how to enter code to change things.Thought maybe there was something wrong with the router and was looking for information on it.By the way it is a SMC 8014WN-RES.Any advice that you could give me would be greatly appreciated.Just beware,you will be dealing with a dummy.Thanks,DJ

    • rex August 13, 2011 at 9:25 am #

      Cool to hear that you have your pc’s running Ubuntu. I’ve had similar situations with Toshiba and Linksys access points before. There is an odd issue with certain wireless chipsets used in Toshiba and certain Linksys routers, including the WRT54GL which is my favorite – they just won’t connect. Typically, flashing the router to Tomato firmware works in those cases.

      However, you are using Ubuntu which makes it odd. Even in the cases I just mentioned with Toshiba, I could boot them to a Linux Live CD and the wifi would connect to the exact same WRT54GL that Windows would not.

      I’m sure it’s a driver issue. You may have to do some research with NDISWrapper.

      https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WifiDocs/Driver/Ndiswrapper

      Worst case scenario, buy one of the thin DLink USB WiFi cards and use that.

      • dopiejoe August 13, 2011 at 12:21 pm #

        I looked in the Synaptic Package Manager
        ndisgtk
        ndiswrapper-common
        ndiswrapper-utils-1.9
        have all been installed.
        Yesterday the installer went into the “Hardware Drivers” section and updated the driver(Broadcom STA wireless driver).The package contains Broadcom 802.11Linux STA wireless driver for use with Broadcom’s BCM4311-,BCM4312-,BCM4321-,and BCM4322-based hardware.

  11. dopiejoe August 13, 2011 at 4:03 am #

    I saw an earlier post where you had said the fastest SL speed is 20 Mbps.Ours is 100 Mbps.

    • rex August 13, 2011 at 9:26 am #

      Last time I checked in Bossier City, LA, it was still 20Mbs. Where are you located?

      • dopiejoe August 13, 2011 at 11:22 am #

        Located in a small N.Central TX town.Suddenlink utilizes the local phone lines.The other ISP speed is 100 Mbps also.We decided to change because there were times it seemed like the system would get bogged down,especially after school was out for the summer.

  12. dopiejoe August 13, 2011 at 4:11 am #

    I forgot to mention that the LT does pick up the signal from the router,also it picks up 2 more wireless services in the neighborhood it just will not connect. DJ

  13. Donald August 14, 2011 at 4:03 am #

    I’ve been having problems with the PS3 randomly saying the router “SMC SMC8014WN-RES” that suddenlink provided may not support IP fragments; if anyone can help me out with this I’d appreciate it.

    That’s not the only reason I’m here, I found through the status that the router is broadcasting multiple SSID’s and I was able to manually enter one with WPA2-PSK security and I’m now using that one. The only problem is that I can’t seem to change the password and I don’t really know if this is a security issue.

  14. dopiejoe August 15, 2011 at 7:23 pm #

    Have had nothing but trouble with the SMC8014WN-RES.Not only did it not support Linux OS my wife’s ebook would not even connect to it.It finally quit working even hardwired to the computer.Installer was supposed to come back today and didn’t show.Called them to come and get it and I will put our own equipment on the line.Frustrating!

  15. Jason August 19, 2011 at 11:08 pm #

    I am using a linksys e1200 router and am trying to use it to connect a PC(wireless), Laptop(wireless) and an Xbox (wired). It was working fine at my old apartment put i just moved into a new one which provides suddenlink for free and now I can not open any web browser without being redirected to a suddenlink page saying my access is restricted to this website but the PC still can run programs using the Internet (like steam or warcraft) and if I hook my PC up directly into the modem the Internet works fine anyone have this problem/how did you fix it?

    • rex August 19, 2011 at 11:20 pm #

      First question: Does the apartment provide you a cable modem, or how do you connect?

  16. Mike September 23, 2011 at 7:59 pm #

    I need a router/modem combination to work with Suddenlink. Is there one out there? I was looking at the Linsys x2000. Will It work?

  17. jose November 28, 2011 at 7:36 pm #

    i need to change my encryption from WEP to WPA so i can do an internet recovery on my mac book air – I have suddenlink, and I have the SMC8014WN router/modem… is it possible t change the encryption or not?

    • rex November 29, 2011 at 7:49 am #

      Unless they have changed the locked firmware, then I have 2 suggestions:

      (1) Buy a Motorola Surfboard modem and a Linksys or DLink router, call Suddenlink and activate the modem, and configure the router.

      OR

      (2) Buy a Linksys or DLink router, set it up on the same subnet as the SMC8014WN, and configure WPA2 on it. You could simply create a double-NAT setup, but sometimes that might cause you issues.

  18. Shane Doe December 14, 2011 at 8:35 pm #

    I was wondering. I tried to launch Steam, which I have not launched since a switched to Suddenlink. I keep getting login in errors. I know the username and password are correct. I have an older router that seems to work fine for internet surfing. However, I have a sneaky suspicion that the router is the issue as it seem you all are saying it may not jive with Suddenlink.

    Thoughts?

    Doc. H.

  19. Debra December 21, 2011 at 12:58 am #

    Wow. I stumbled upon this sight when I was simply looking for a few tips for connecting my parents’ suddenlink cable to the wii we bought for them last year. I want to set up netflex for them. This is starting to sound crazy. Perhaps I should just buy them a blue ray player and forget about wireless in the house.

  20. DouglasB December 28, 2011 at 4:53 pm #

    I switched to SL today and now I’m very worried. I’ve the SMC8014WM modem/wireless router. I can connect as long as I use an ethernet cat5 cable. Wireless will not connect. Oh, it sees the Sudddenlink.net-XXXX network and I am using the proper 25 alpha-numeric key..but still no joy. Suddenlink tells me it’s my problem they don’t support networks!

    OK, then why did you sell me a bundle package telling me I can connect my PC, laptop and Android tab wirelessly? I’m making them send a tech tomorrow, but I’m not holding out any hope. Obv. I will need to go buy a wireless cable model/router combo at Best Buy so I can pay SL for something they are not providing. :( Anyone have a reccomendation on model of modem I should get?

  21. DavidK January 9, 2012 at 1:30 am #

    Just upgraded my Suddenlink from 10meg to 20 meg. They told me since I upgraded to 20 I have to get a different modem(the 10 modem wouldnt work on 20), does this sound correct? Since I dont have a modem/router I have to rent theirs and I dont want to, what do you recommend? We have SEVERAL wifi things(3 iphones, printer, xbox, playstation, ipad2) Awesome site btw!

  22. DavidK January 9, 2012 at 11:40 am #

    Would a dual band work good for my application since the Xbox could run at the higher frequency?

  23. DavidK January 9, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

    And the ipad2 could also run at the 5 ghz?

    • rex January 10, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

      Sure – the iPad has 802.11n and will connect. Of course, that would only matter for your internal network or if you had greater than say 30Mbs from your ISP.

      http://www.apple.com/ipad/specs/

  24. Ruben Gloria February 23, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

    Hi , my name is Ruben and i am having trouble with my SMC8014WN modem/router and I brought it from Suddenlink. My problem is on the modem/router it says “traffic” and that light always turns off and I can’t get on the internet. Any help please?

    • rex February 23, 2012 at 5:55 pm #

      There should also be an “online” light. Does it stay steady green?

      If the traffic light is turning off, that’s probably an indicator that the modem is losing sync to Suddenlink. It will either be an issue on their end, in the lines to your house, or the modem itself. I’d start screaming to have them test it.

  25. Ben March 3, 2012 at 1:33 am #

    I’m thinking about switching back to Suddenlink for the 50 mbps package.

    I want to get my own setup to connect me and my wife’s iphones, mac air, macbook pro, pc, ipad, and mac pro.

    Would a Motorola SURFboard DOCSIS 3.0 SD6121 Modem with Air Port Extreme work?

    Thanks in advanced, I enjoyed the read.

    • rex March 3, 2012 at 11:43 am #

      Yep – it would work just fine. The Airport Extreme is very easy to configure on the Macs.

      FYI – I have one running on my network as a range extender and running a set of speakers using Airplay from my MacBook Pro, iphones, and ipads.

      • Pheophytin March 17, 2012 at 6:32 pm #

        Hello Rex,
        You seem to field many of the questions on this link; it’s much appreciated. I’m a neophyte to the wireless router technology, am also a Suddenlink customer, and also rent an SMC8014WN. I have a Sony Bravia TV/PS3 combo that I’m trying to tie into my home network. Signal strength detected by the Sony devices is 52%, the SSID is automatically detected, but it has not accepted the WEP that I’ve able to successfully enter for other devices in our home.
        My questions:
        1) Is there any easy fix? – I’ve tried all the default username/password combos without any luck. When I enter “cusadmin/password,” the login screen simply resets. All other combinations result in “Deny.”
        2) Based on previous discussion, I am seriously considering purchasing own hardware. Is this difficult to set up myself with Suddenlink?

        Thanks in advance.

  26. skyler March 17, 2012 at 11:30 pm #

    Pheophytin-
    1. How far away is the modem from the TV?
    2. 53% signal strength could be far lesser quality. (100% signal could be as low as 65% link quality)
    3. How many walls if any is the modem transmitting through?
    4 If the modem is clear across the house, any possible way to move it next to the TV? Maybe with a high Ghz splitter (3-5 ghz is what I normally use)

    If the device is located far away from the source, the modem can’t push the signal really far, and that distance decreases with every wall, piece of furniture, etc.
    As far as buying your own equipment, as the OP has stated and I agree. Buying your own hardware is what I recommend. That way you aren’t limited to SL’s configuration. The SMC router/modem is a piece in it’s own right, SL didn’t help it any by locking it down. To set up a modem and router is simple as pie.
    1. unplug the SMC modem/router
    2. plug in the new modem
    3. plug in ethernet to PC/Mac
    4. type ipconfig for PC … ifconfig for mac
    5. Look for something along these lines
    PC
    Ethernet adapter Local Area Network:

    Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
    Link-local IPv6 Address . . . . . : fe80::52a:570c:e43:c4a6%15
    IPv4 Address. . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.116
    Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
    Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.1
    Mac
    en0: flags=8863 mtu 1500
    options=27
    ether 00:23:32:cb:d4:f0
    inet6 fe80::223:32ff:fecb:d4f0%en0 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x4
    inet 192.168.0.129 netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast 192.168.0.255
    media: autoselect (1000baseT )
    status: active
    6. If you pull an address (IPv4/inet) and a gateway your modem is already configured for DHCP and you can continue on to setting up the router. (or you can use the gateway to change the login info in the modem, and overview the settings of the modem. )
    7. unplug the cable from the computer, plug it into the WAN port of the router.
    8. plug a cable into port 1, and into your computer. **** see below if the following doesn’t work*** open a browser, type 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1 (username: admin // password: admin/password/blank)
    9. proceed with configuring your wireless, name the SSID, setup password (WPA or WPA2 TKIP/AES are the best options)
    10. look over your basic settings, make sure your router is set to use DHCP, If you have issues with IP assigning, turn DHCP off in the modem. (plug back into it directly, run ipconfig/ifconfig and type the default gateway into a browser, depending on the modem the username and passwords may be the same as the router, unless you changed it above.)
    11. you should be up and running, it’s less complicated than it sounds. These steps should ideally take you 10-30 mins, roughly. I do it much differently but for the sake of explaining things, I figured I would break it down and hopefully help out.

    **** If the standard IP doesn’t work, you can unplug the power and WAN cable from the router, then plug the power back in. Which will erase the DHCP stats from the router, thus enabling you to log in with one of the listed IP addresses. Most routers come with these instructions in a pamphlet/booklet. However ‘us’ men always do first then read =D.*****

    Hope this has shed some light on it for you.
    –skyler >> gentoonix(a)gmail(dot)com

  27. Pheophytin March 19, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

    Thanks for that eloquent and detailed explanation, Skyler. The finer details of this case are as follows:

    1) Our Bravia TV/PS3 combo is actually one floor and two walls away from the modem, but it was able to latch onto the signal with our old modem/router (evidenced by my ability to download software updates).

    2) One month ago, SL informed me that our hardware was “out of date,” and replaced the router, in addition to providing a new WEP.

    3) I was able to changeover the WEP on my iPad/iPhone without trouble, but when I did the same for the TV/PS3, it could not latch onto the SL SSID, despite triple-checking that I was entering the WEP correctly.

    4) I happened on this thread and was thoroughly educated on the fallacies of the SMC router, though I don’t have a good explanation for the problem with my PS3/TV – neither the modem/router, nor the TV/PS3 have changed locations since the fateful “upgrade.”

    I’ll gladly take any further guidance from the high-tech gurus. Thanks again.

  28. cecy May 16, 2012 at 10:02 am #

    Hi Rex, I really appreciate the time you’ve put here. I’m moving out and apparently I have no other option but to get suddenlink (the only internet provider in the area I’ll live at)… I’ve been reading about the modems and the routers. Will the Motorola SB 5120 work just as well as the sb6120? and I already have a router Lynksys E1000,will this do or should I get a newer one? We will be using a wireless pc and printer, a laptop and both our phones.

    • rex May 21, 2012 at 9:15 am #

      Hi cecy,

      Sorry I’m a little late responding. Somehow I missed your comment in my flood of email I get each day.

      The 5120 will work just fine – however, you can’t take advantage of the really high speeds since it is a Docsis 1.1 and 2.0, but not 3.0.

      The linksys E1000 will work. Just be aware that over the last few years, I’ve not been a big fan of linksys, especially the cheaper models. In the past I’ve written extensively about the Linksys WRT54GL – and it is still one of my favorites for durability and features with Tomato firmware.

      However, since I’ve switched to a Mac, I started using the Apple Airport Extreme with a USB hub for NAS (network attached storage). That may be beyond what you need; however, the Airport Extreme and other routers offer Wireless N which can be useful for your internal network if your laptop and devices support N.

  29. Chris W May 23, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

    I just got Suddenlink, but have yet to go buy a router….do you recommend any router’s per say? Or just anything from Bestbuy or what have you will work? I plan on using the wirless internet for youtube, netflix, PS3/360 gaming and downloading only

  30. JohnXIII July 21, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

    am trying to port forward ports 80,119 and 6881-6999 on my SMC8014WN.
    I go to NAT>port forwarding, then I for my IP I type in 192.168.0.1, then I selected UDP/TCP, I do single port, 80, apply and virtually the exact steps for the other. After that, the port check box “Activate” is unchecked, so I check it, and then it refreshes the page and it goes unchecked again! I don’t know why it won’t activate, and all the Ports check tests come back negative! please help!

    • rex July 21, 2012 at 11:03 pm #

      I’m going to guess that 192.168.0.1 is the internal IP address of your router/gateway. You wouldn’t want to forward those ports to it as I’m also going to guess that you are doing this for a bit torrent client?

      If so, you need to forward the ports to YOUR PC (or Mac)’s internal IP address – not the router. That also means you are going to need to set your pc or mac to a static internal IP address.

      • JohnXIII July 24, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

        how do i go about doing that?

        • rex July 24, 2012 at 4:22 pm #

          Windows XP, Vista, 7 or Mac or Linux (which distro)? Gotta help me out here.

          • JohnXIII July 24, 2012 at 5:49 pm #

            i’m on windows 7

        • rex July 24, 2012 at 6:17 pm #

          Ok – rather than reinventing the wheel, this page has a great tutorial on just how to do that. After you get your pc set, then you go into the router and fwd your ports to the IP address that you use. You DO NOT want to use 192.168.0.1 – that is your router. I’d suggest 192.168.0.2 or .3 or something.

          Also, I usually set my router’s DHCP to start handing out addresses at .100 – that way it doesn’t inadvertently cause conflicts with any static IPs that I’ve set on devices.

          http://portforward.com/networking/static-win7.htm

  31. Sean Ryan August 19, 2012 at 8:00 pm #

    Am at my wits end with Suddenlink here in Truckee, CA. Speed to the modem appears just fine, but no matter which wireless router I attach (I have tried 3), the signal becomes erratic, and even if you can keep the signal, the wireless speed drops below 1MB. Have repeatedly called SL, and have even had them rewire the cable, but it either is a set of incompatible wireless routers I have tried, or there is a problem at the pole.

    For a basic wireless set up with SL for a mix of Macs, PCs and game consoles, does anyone have a recommended wireless router? Thanks for any help since it will keep me from yelling at the SL rep again as they transfer me from Texas to somewhere to Ca etc… :)

    • rex August 19, 2012 at 8:04 pm #

      If you connect one of your pcs or Macs directly to the Suddenlink modem and go to http://www.speedtest.net – what is your bandwidth upstream and downstream? Then do it with your existing wireless router. Report them back here as a reply.

      Also, what router are you running now?

  32. Matt October 22, 2012 at 5:25 pm #

    Good news is that suddenlink isnt using the SMC brand wireless routers anymore, docsis 3.0 modems forward, instead they have switched to ARRIS.

    More good news, its WPA2 PSK encryption, using the serial number on the modem, easy to find now for the customer

    Bad news is, even with suddenlink internal login, we cannot make any changes, and i mean none

    I always recommend to the customers i talk with to buy their own router, either an apple airport or cisco, just my personal preference……as long as they dont get belkin /shudders

    For speed tests btw, I use speedtest.net, is about the most accurate out there imo, and is better then suddenlink’s own speed test in some places

    • rex October 22, 2012 at 11:13 pm #

      Thanks for posting the update, Matt.

      Apparently our tastes agree – I recommend BYOR (bring your own router) and also use speedtest.net across multiple servers to get a good “average picture” for bandwidth during peak times. One benefit of the Airport is that it has a USB port that supports hubs for multiple network storage drives. I’ve got 5 USB drives attached to mine for various things plus my cloud backup – http://www.crashplan.com

      Yeah – it’s nice that Suddenlink is taking a step in the right direction, but they are still taking 1/2 a step back. I LOVE my Suddenlink connection (100Mbs/5Mbs), but I have my own equipment.

  33. Tiffany November 1, 2012 at 8:41 am #

    Does Netgear N600 wireless dual band router work with Motorola Surfboard? I was just wondering if i needed to buy another router. I know i need a new modem, the only time mine works is if its directly connected. I have too many wireless devices for that.

    • Matt November 3, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

      That will work fine tiffany, any router will in theory work with a cable modem, just unplug the modem, hook router up with the power unpluged, once router is hooked back up, plug modem back up, wait a couple min, plug router in, run setup id need be, though most netgears come pre configured, u should be then good to go

  34. rocky Amyx December 26, 2012 at 11:22 pm #

    I’m not making a guide but for all you who want to changed from wep to wpa use chrome and view the elements (source code) of the smc modem… andlook through the code and you’ll find the WiFi security listed under a hidden element…. I no longer have docsis 3 modem so… I can’t give complete details

  35. Jim February 23, 2013 at 11:20 pm #

    I rent the smc8014wn and i just installed it and now i my location says i am in Ottawa when in fact i am in Toronto i called Rogers and they could not help me what should i do

    • rex February 24, 2013 at 5:02 pm #

      Where is it telling you the location?

      Since you are on Rogers Cable, then it’s going to be up to them. I’m only familiar with Rogers through information from tech resources, and have not had to deal with them.

  36. Guy Next Door March 12, 2013 at 2:13 am #

    I was just surfing around, since the time of posting this I have cracked almost all my neighbors internets. Most use Suddenlink and boy do they make it easy. Oh look there it says Suddenlink.net-6468 time to boot up BackTrack 5r3 and build on top of what I have already. You see combining all these internets with what you already have using Connectify with Dispatch you can pile up your internet, and my megs just keep getting bigger and bigger! Not Centurylink though they don’t WEP out the gate from what I can tell, but before you guys think OH if I use WPA/WPA2 with blah blah and all that crap then you need to learn about something new that comes with BackTrack5, it’s called REAVER. You know that lil WPS button you push that is just so convenient to hook up your pc, netbook, whatever to your router? Well that comes with a pin, and that pin comes with your all your password goodies. You know how long that pin is? 8, and it’s all numbers big or small doesn’t matter. So while you think you are all secured someone out there (like me) could be brute-forcing your lil button and can have your password within 2-8 hours. Not as long as the 2-8 minutes it takes for WEP, but hell it still ain’t bad! Then getting to set the router to my specifications well hell, that works out the best for the both of us. It’s a hackers world now, and I could open your eyes to so many tools that do so many things, then you would really learn just how your securities are about as strong as a wet paper bag. Me? I’m just a guy who wants to build SuperMeg internet using whatever I feel like at my disposal. There are much more sinister ones though, who could take EVERYTHING from you, once on your wireless. I’ve already shown you how quickly that could happen.

  37. Bub March 17, 2013 at 3:33 pm #

    Can someone please give me some sort of information on why my iPhone 5 will not connect to this router? I just had this installed last week and all other devices work fine but my iPhone will not connect. Btw after reading this I will be returning this modem/router for the Surfboard and using my DLink Router again.

    • rex March 17, 2013 at 5:30 pm #

      I’m guessing that yours is locked down and will only allow WEP? There are odd instances where the iPhone will not maintain a connection to wifi unless you manually enter the SSID and key (password). I’ve also encountered instances where certain devices will refuse to connection to certain WAPs (wireless access points) even though wifi is “standardized”.

      Provide some more details (without revealing your location or password) and I can try to advise you better. However, if you are going back to a Surfboard and your DLink, then it doesn’t matter.

      Rex

  38. Mel April 27, 2013 at 7:13 pm #

    I can’t get our new suddenlink to connect to our wii. i am not tech savvy and didn’t understand most of the previous posts, except to glean that you might be able to help :) It automatically finds our service, but won’t connect and says the password is wrong.

    Any help appreciated.

    • rex April 27, 2013 at 7:23 pm #

      Hi – I can certainly try to help. Lets start with the basics.

      (1) What brand / model router do you have – is it the one from from Suddenlink?

      Rex

      • Mel April 28, 2013 at 3:37 pm #

        yes, the one from Suddenlink, a Hitrontechnologies. The technician said we could go get one from walmart and not pay to rent theirs, but I didn’t know what to get or how to hook it up.

  39. Mel May 1, 2013 at 3:05 pm #

    Rex, Do you have any ideas for me?

    • rex May 1, 2013 at 4:01 pm #

      Hi – sure. I would suggest a Netgear brand N series routers. Now, the Wii doesn’t run on the N wireless, but that is ok. The router also falls back to G as well.

      As far as the Hitron – what model is it?

      Wireless Gateway
      CCR-30364

      The reason I ask is that if it is a Hitron that is a cable modem/gateway AND a router with wireless, then by adding the Netgear, you will have double NAT (a router within a router) which can cause some connectivity issues. If that is the case, then you should call Suddenlink and exchange the Hitron for a cable modem only (non router). Then add the Netgear.

      *Personally I’m a fan of the Motorola modems.

  40. Perturbed specimen April 21, 2014 at 12:40 am #

    @rex

    Hi, I’ve read through this exhaustive thread and have found some good answers regarding why I can’t change the channel on my suddenlink-rented Arris Gateway DG950. Thank you for all the info you’ve put up about this topic over the years.

    My question comes in with the new router I decided to get in my attempt to improve the wireless signal. It’s a Medialink Wireless-N Broadband 300 mbps router. Was on sale and prime-eligible on amazon and had decent reviews. I use a TP-Link TL-WN951N PCI wireless adapter for my computer. My suddenlink connection is payed for at 15/3.

    I used Xirrus wifi inspector to see what the signal was from the current Arris router/modem as well as the channel usage within the area. Suddenlink is the only provider in the area and as fate would have it, channel 11 (my locked-down channel) is used by almost everyone within the vicinity. There are also some channel 1s. Would it be prudent to use a Channel 6 when I get my new router?

    My goal is not to maximize the speed of my internet, but the connectivity quality. I like to play real-time internet games that require a reasonable connection (I CANNOT wire-in to the modem, it is too far and unsightly for my and my roommates ).

    With that said, my last question is: is it feasible for me to be able to expect a high-quality wireless connection with this new router? My biggest problems appears to be when my roommates choose to use Netflix or other streaming services. Is there any way to reserve some amount of our internet speed towards things that are not netflix etc.?

    I apologize is this is a bit disorganized, I’m actually just full of rage at the lack of stabilizability that suddenlink’s rented router has and the general quality of signal/service from it. It’s very difficult to write a well thought out message about these things when you get mad at the silly things you put up with on a daily basis due to a monopoly.

    Look forward to hearing from you, and sorry for the end rant.

  41. rex April 21, 2014 at 12:42 pm #

    Your internet connect is nearly always the slowest link in the chain. The only exceptions are when you have a 100Mbs+ connection or 1Gbs – such as fiber.

    For example, I have the 107Mbs / 5Mbs connection from Suddenlink – but my router (Apple Airport Extreme) and my wired laptops all have Gb ethernet connections. That means even my really fast Suddenlink connection is still 10x slower than my LAN connection.

    Now – in my case if I connect my laptop(s) via 2.4Ghz then the throughput is 54Mbs (max). In that case, my Suddenlink would definitely be faster WAN than my LAN wifi. If I connect wirelessly by 5GHz then my throughput would be technically faster than my WAN.

    The point is that there are many factors to consider – including networking as well as the hardware.

    You mentioned that the problem seems worse when your roommates are streaming Netflix. If you have 2-3 people streaming Netflix in 720p or 1080p, then sure that will affect your gaming since it is using up your available bandwidth.

    One thing most people don’t consider is the ~15% overhead in TCP. To put it simply, the protocol is a 2 way street. To “download” takes a certain amount of “upload”. This is one of the reasons that AT&T DSL sucks so bad. You only have 640Kbs upstream max. That is .640Mbs upstream – a trickle compared to 3-5Mbs from cable.

    In your case, it might be your hardware, but I think you are just using up your available bandwidth.

    ps: I have 3 computers, 3 xBoxes, 4 Apple TVs, 5 iPhones, and 3 iPads that are all generally going simultaneously at many points during the day. I use an average of 600GBs per month – yes 600 GigaBytes. My connection rarely even hiccups, but I’m paying $$ for that. ;-)

  42. Brandy Mae August 31, 2014 at 12:50 am #

    Im currently a Suddenlink customer. I love the speed but only issue we are having currently is trying to get both our xboxs to be open nat at same time with the arris dg950a. I know it can be done but its a pain trying to figure it out. If i could afford to get a better router myself i so would just so I can make my guys happy. Ive been searching all day today trying to figure it out so these two both can play and be happy. so far no luck.

    • rex September 1, 2014 at 12:26 pm #

      Open NAT? Gotta love MS’s terms for dropping the security of your network. :-)

      What they are really talking about is port forwarding or implementing an internal IP as a “DMZ”. When you have multiple machines on your LAN (local network), that presents a challenge since port forwarding/triggering generally works with 1 internal IP at a time.

      Enter uPnP – universal plug n play. One of the great things MS pushed, router manufacturers followed suit, and I make money cleaning up the mess from malware. :-)

      At any rate, if the arris dg950a supports uPnP then you need to activate it and restart your xBoxes. That should solve the problem. If not – then get a decent router like the Netgear n3700.

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