rt2600ac still long term buy?

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rt2600ac still long term buy?

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Looking to reset my router set up, and wondering if the 2600 is still viable in the long term. Given that it is already over 2 years old, will I be able to keep it another 5 years with proper software support and updates?

I am not too concerned about the 2600''s performance. I get by with rather modest speeds and do not anticipate a desire to move to WiFi 6 anytime soon. What I do want is a solid, well supported router that allows me to add mesh components over time. I don't like the idea of buying a mesh router now, only to find future expansion poorly matched or incompatible.

As an alternative, I have thought of purchasing the mr2200ac and then waiting for the 2600 refresh in a year or two. But that assumes that Synology doesn't move to WiFi 6 and leave 5 behind.

Any thoughts? No technology is "future proof" but is the 2600 too old to last till 2025?
 

jeyare

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@A44B welcome in this forum.
So, you have got an interesting set of questions.
Unfortunately, no one except head of Network Devices R&D in Synology has the answers re RT2600ac:
- next 5y proper sw and vendor support availability.
Network is too different environment from NAS.

Re your wish:
-What I do want is a solid, well supported router that allows me to add mesh components over time.
No one has - over time - guarantee. Then you need definitely looking for network specialist, because Synology network range is too limited now. Look for Ubiquiti and wide range of such network solutions. Works well. I like it. For same cost of 2600ac you can purchase more useful USG Pro.

Known info:
- release date of the router was in DEC/20016, then development has been based on late knowledge.
- there is no official End of life or end of support announcement from Synology
 

fredbert

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Hi @A44B you haven't said what you're currently using and what your future requirements will be.

My background in home WiFi was the original Apple Airport 'grey dome' a/b router in 2001/2, then Airport Express 'g' and 'n', Airport Extreme 'n' (flat square) and dual-band 'n'. The last of these I got in 2009. The two flat Extremes were used for my network until Aug 2018. When it became clear Apple were discontinuing the Airport line then I started to look for an alternative. When I fired up the newer Extreme last weekend I see that Apple had pushed a security update for it (not bad for 10 years old kit).

I'll admit that I hadn't heard of Ubiquiti until people of Synology forums mentioned them. They have a look of the business-focused approach that I see for work: Cisco, Cisco Meraki, and HPE Aruba. For my home setup I want something that's an all-in-one and gets on the Internet, securely, but is reasonably easy to use.

The benefit of the SRM devices is the familiar interface with DSM. As an all-in-one home router, firewall, LAN, and WLAN device then, IMO, it's a capable device. Sure there are features that some people later look for that aren't supported (yet?): see the recent thread on guest wired LAN (spoiler: not supported, only wireless LAN).

From a WiFi coverage point-of-view, the RT2600ac has been better than my extended WLAN using the two Extremes. I've since added a MR2200ac to get stronger reception in the far corner of a double garage (which is across a smallish bit of garden). Gone are the complaints of weak reception in bedrooms.

Things that I really appreciate in the RT2600ac vs Apple Airport:
  • Firewall is more than a simple set of port forwarding rules.
  • Safe Access profiles control Internet access using profiles (devices are added to profiles). Note for parents:
    • Airport has device Timed Access and stops WLAN access when a device is 'out of hours'
    • Safe Access only applies time schedules to Internet access: local access is still possible
  • Threat Prevention will block malicious connections, even if the firewall or Safe Access allows it.
  • VPN Plus server that supports L2TP/IPsec, OpenVPN, and SSL-VPN remote access.

The MR2200ac also supports these features, except for Threat Prevention. But it has only 1 LAN port and no SD card slot. I would definitely use a RT2600ac as the Internet router because it has TP package which makes you aware of how much probing you connection was getting before.
 

jeyare

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Fredbert is right. And he has good points.
I will try describe some of advantages what was Go for Ubiquiti Unifi from my side vs RT2600ac (both tested in May2019 by me). No need do it by my way, just for an imagine:

1. Unifi controller is solution you can operated by:
- any device in your LAN (PC, laptop, tablet)
- also in Synology NAS by Docker. This is most important point:
all your Network management is available (securely) by any browser from any place and you don't need open additional port in your router, when you use Syno Reverse Proxy for the Unifi Controller
even you can migrate sites/backup/restore remotely.
I have two SME company sites of operation and one of my family. All of them are running in Unifi networking (routers, switches, APs). What is great for me to manage all the networks from single point and doesn't matter what kind of devices there (different APs, different switches). Also from my phone.

2. Router is router and if you have rack with devices in "could" room then you don't need router/wifi AP in single device. Specially when you can place an independent WiFi AP to better position than the rack for better WiFi coverage. If you thinking about Mesh network it is quite better thinking where to place what.

3. Security. IPS/IDS from Unifi point of view is comparable even better than in Syno. Setup in Unifi is bigger from features point of view, but easy. And how many time you need to change it?

4. VPN. Same as in Synology, but with one more advantages - site to site VPN by few clicks. Perfect

5. All management regarding your LAN (wired, wireless) specially for every single port in your switch by defined profiles. Enterprise features for home device.

6. WiFi operation setup is more than comfortable. Include self analyze/setup of interference with others APs.
There is a feature to place a map to controller, draw a walls (incl. definition of the wall thickness and material) and try to find best operation place for the APs. Useful for all my friends, who purchased also Unifi by my advices.

7. Price:
Unifi USG-pro router ... 223 Euro
Unifi switch ... 8ports from 90 Euro but with 60W for PoE (I have got 48ports/500W version)
Unifi Nano AP ... 135 Euro ... and this is a tornado in AP environment, of course you can purchase AP from 60Euro

PS: from Unifi operation I have empty "IP block" in my NAS.
 

fredbert

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Last edited:
I have two SME company sites of operation and one of my family. All of them are running in Unifi networking (routers, switches, APs).
Which is why I said...
@A44B you haven't said what you're currently using and what your future requirements will be.

;)

There's a wide breadth of requirements, environment considerations, and [not least] user experience.

Also price may not be as comparable too. Latest prices from span.com (not a discounter and including our sales tac [VAT]):
  • RT2600ac: £211 +£7.50 delivery
  • MR2200ac: £109 +£7.50 delivery
 

jeyare

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you know me, every time I require a spec of environment, expectations, etc. It was just a thought about two requests:
- guarantee of next 5y proper sw and vendor support availability
- that allows me to add mesh components over time.

When 5y is out of my mind (definitely for everyone), then request to allow me to add mesh components over time is little bit near in Unifi (thanks to wide range solutions than Syno in this area).

Thought? :)
 

jeyare

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re price, agree ... and I forgot, that my purchase is w/o VAT because it is my own advantage

But:
- for PoE you need also purchase switch with PoE for Synology... then same cost. But another one management SW for the switch. In Unifi same controller when the switch is from Ubiquiti.

Of course, you don't need to pay for AP, when you have got Syno router operated in right part of house. Less cost for Syno. When not, you need again purchase additional AP. Then same cost for both platforms.
Re: Unifi Nano AP ... it's crazy, what a performance through concrete walls still with 5GHz and 120Hz band ... for such ability you will save two APs

But the Dockerized controller of Unifi is for all of the many in this world. Because everything what you need is Unifi docker container. When you need close a door for all external WAN attempts to control your network - you need just switch of the container. What a better security feature than in Syno router remote control.

Back to some real known problem:
MSS clamp in xDSL lines (one of major problem with perfect tunning of your WAN) - Maximum Segment Size or MSS. This is simply the amount of useful data in a packet, or just the MTU less the IP and TCP headers.
Synology MT2600ac has a problem to set MTU to 1500 (what is a standard e.g. for xDSL or LTE modems). Syno has just range of 1200-1492. the 1492 value is not a problem because with MTU at 1500 MSS can't be larger than 1460 max.
But when your provider uses just MTU1000 you have a big problem with slow utilized packet (fragmented) transport = your speed of internet.
1572012458421.png


You know I like Syno NAS products, but Unifi is in another (more higher) level.
 
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@fredbert My current setup is fairly simple. I use an Asus rt-n56u along with a
Zoom docsis 3.0 modem. I will be moving soon, so I anticipate needing additional power. Though it is still just an apartment, it includes 2 bed/bath, living, dining, kitchen, and laundry. It is also an old building (i.e. thick walls), and one bedroom is on the second floor.

I could likely get away with a single high powered router, but do like the flexibility that future mesh options could bring.

@jeyare There is definitely some food for thought there with Unifi, though I am not sure how much expertise is needed to set it up. It would definitely fit the bill as far as future needs are concerned, however. I can see how the individual elements and software would make future expansion much more efficient.
 

fredbert

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@jeyare you certainly have the capability to spec and setup your Ubiquiti setup. If I was to use ceiling mounted APs, and could face wiring the house to suit then I'm the type that would like the Ubiquti approach.

But for my traditional home setup then I'm really happy with the RT2600ac. The upgrade to SRM 1.2 and adding Threat Prevention (vs the resource hungry beta that was Intrusion Prevention) shows that there is ongoing development.

@A44B My Virgin Media cable Hub 3 router is in basic modem/bridge mode and the RT is the Internet firewall. I run a 5m Cat5E cable from the VM modem to the RT, so it's in a better location. An then a Cat6 back to a small TP-Link switch that serves LAN devices a 10m Cat5E to another switch which then connects to the MR2200ac for wired backhaul of the mesh.

Don't know what devices you use but I found using WiFi Explorer on the MacBook Air helped to get an idea of how the signal varied around the house. Then I'd make an adjustment. If I'm honest, the MRC2200ac wasn't really necessary but it does boost the signal along ground floor level and is placed near a few wide doorways.



BTW one thing to remember about mesh networks, and I don't see mentioned, is that the AP placement needs to be close enough to enable good wireless backhaul between APs: if your client device loses signal at a location then what would it be like for an AP to join the mesh? That's why using wired is a better way if it's available.
 

jeyare

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@fredbert agree with your point of view. From traditional and simple use is Synology router better.
From my side it’s just a discussion. Everyone must find his own way.

I have an advantage, that 10y ago when my house was built - I was thinking with paper and pencil about future. Then I have got everywhere Cat6, include ceilings. A connection of independent APs is now easy, include PoE. Then savings or not of 150€ for such independent AP is for your consideration at advantages side :
- better WiFi coverage
- 4x4 spatial streams
- up to 8 SSID per radio (for independent and secure multiple WiFi, e.g. hotspot for visitors or wifi for home appliances as “smart” owen :) )
- based on MU MIMO and not old MIMO technology .... what is included also in Syno Rt2600ac (great)
1572068720383.jpeg


For everyone who understand a foundation of networking is Unifi better from any reason. Yes there is not a wizard setup mode for a beginner. And you need spend half of day with preparing of the entire configuration. I think same spending as for other managed network components. Then you have careless system. Include best ever Hotspot for friends of your children, based on a “sterile” connection to internet for them. Then you need just independent Unifi Hotspot app for your children that can issue new vouchers for the friends. Of course you can secure the “children issuing” account by many of preferences, what is more important it’s account only to Hotspot feature.
And all dashboards of Unifi controller are simple great and useful:
1572068247487.jpeg
 

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