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Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

techx15
I've been here awhile

I use rogers ignite xb7 modem only as a gateway with a separate DLink acting as router for home network (wired - ethernet based). I have turned wifi off on the xb7 modem (both 2.5GHz and 5GHz). What I have noticed is that the radio is still up - checked with a RF meter.  The event log also shows that the radio0 link is up however the wifi is correctly off as set.

 

Is there any way to turn the radio off on the modem?

Thx

 

 

 

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Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

... and no, there is no "off switch" for any of these radios.

View solution in original post

13 REPLIES 13

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@techx15 wrote:

Is there any way to turn the radio off on the modem?


No, not possible.  Disabling Wi-Fi on an Ignite Gateway only disables the Wi-Fi segment that is associated with your internal LAN.  There is no way to completely disable all the internal radios.  Even in Bridge Mode, the Ignite Gateway still has internal services running on it and some of those are accessed through hidden Wi-Fi SSIDs.

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

techx15
I've been here awhile

This is strange. If these are internal services that require hidden SSID, then at-least can the power to the radio be controlled (reduced)? Unfortunately, the location of the modem is under my desk and it is difficult to relocate. The radio is blasting off at about 70 uW/cm*2, especially given that I don't plan to use the wifi.

 

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

It's not just Wi-Fi.  These gateways were designed by Comcast to be the hub for an entire suite of "Connected Home" services.  In addition to Wi-Fi, they also have Zigbee and Bluetooth LE radios for IoT device connectivity.

 

https://update.comcast.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/33/dlm_uploads/2020/01/xb7-fact-sheet.pdf

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

... and no, there is no "off switch" for any of these radios.

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

techx15
I've been here awhile

Thank you so much for the clarification.

Looks like I need to look for some kind of RF screening solution.

 

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@techx15 wrote:

Thank you so much for the clarification.

Looks like I need to look for some kind of RF screening solution.


If you are just trying to reduce your exposure, the easiest solution would be to place the gateway a metal bucket.  That will provide some shielding and still allow for ample ventilation.  Your other option is to build or buy a Faraday cage... or you can get your Internet service from a TPIA provider that will allow you to connect your router to a simple cable modem.

 

I'm also assuming that you are a DOCSIS / Cable Internet customer.  If you have a (XGS-PON) FTTH Internet service, the Ignite Gateway is totally optional.  You can unplug the XB7 gateway and connect your own router directly to the ONT.

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

@techx15 out of curiosity, what are you using to measure the RF output from the modem? 

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

techx15
I've been here awhile

I am using:

Triple Axis RF/High Frequency Meter HF-B3G

https://www.latnex.com/products/hf-b3g

 

 

Looks like I will need to build my farady cage using something like:

https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01M294MGK

 

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@techx15 wrote:

Looks like I will need to build my farady cage using something like:

https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01M294MGK


Not unless you plan to make a suit out of it.  😀

 

The Ignite Gateways generate a lot of heat internally, are air-cooled, have an internal fan, and cannot be operated in an enclosed area.  You can't put it in a Faraday bag or a closed box.

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

arnym21
I plan to stick around

@-G- wrote:
Even in Bridge Mode, the Ignite Gateway still has internal services running on it and some of those are accessed through hidden Wi-Fi SSIDs.

Can you elaborate a bit more on that revelation? Are you referring to Zigbee and BT LE radios? 

Also, is it possible for a 3rd party to access the Gateway Admin UI from Wan, or its done via cable outside of internet domain?

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@arnym21 wrote:

@-G- wrote:
Even in Bridge Mode, the Ignite Gateway still has internal services running on it and some of those are accessed through hidden Wi-Fi SSIDs.

Can you elaborate a bit more on that revelation? Are you referring to Zigbee and BT LE radios?


Keep in mind that the Ignite Gateways are more than just a cable modem; they were designed to deliver a broad scope of services.  Prior to Rogers adopting the Comcast X1 platform for Ignite TV, they deployed dedicated cable modems for their Internet service, a separate modem/eMTA for Home Phone, and their Digital TV set-top boxes were standalone devices.  Similarly, their legacy home security solution also required its own dedicated hardware for network connectivity.

 

Comcast took a very different approach; they designed and evolved their X1 platform to enable them to deliver an entire suite of "Connected Home" services, and they designed their Gateways to be the central hub for all of these services.  There are services running on the Gateway that need to remain running to support other services, even when "Bridge Mode" is enabled.   It still needs to provide Wi-Fi connectivity for devices that make up the home security service.  It still needs to provide connectivity for the Home Phone ATA/eMTA.  There is a "helper service" used by TV set-top boxes that enables them to automatically connect to the in-home Wi-Fi.  Some of these services are accessed via hidden Wi-Fi networks.  The end-customer has no control over these services; there is no on/off switch.

 

I can't really provide any information about IoT device connectivity.  Rogers only just started to provide support for this feature fairly recently.  I don't use it.

I also do not subscribe to Ignite Self Protect.

 

Also, is it possible for a 3rd party to access the Gateway Admin UI from Wan, or its done via cable outside of internet domain?


Rogers has total control over the device.  You can't lock them out of it.  They control the device and how it is configured; you only have access to a small number of settings.

 

By default, there is no access to the Gateway's web admin UI from the WAN side.  You can enable it, so that the "tech expert" in your family can get access when needed, but this is disabled by default.

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

arnym21
I plan to stick around

I was referring to Rogers technicians, when talking about Tech Admin UI, rather than User Admin UI with limited controls. I wonder if (Rogers) Tech Admin login allowing to control more features is done via internet, or cable only? I assume that "a family expert" login to modem is done via WAN on the user's permission via regular User Admin UI page?

Re: Radio is still on even if WIFI is turned off.

-G-
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@arnym21 wrote:

I was referring to Rogers technicians, when talking about Tech Admin UI, rather than User Admin UI with limited controls. I wonder if (Rogers) Tech Admin login allowing to control more features is done via internet, or cable only?


Rogers does all of their configuration through their provisioning systems.

 

I assume that "a family expert" login to modem is done via WAN on the user's permission via regular User Admin UI page?


Yes, but there is not much use to enabling this access anymore.  Anything but the most basic configuration is now done through the mobile app.

 

Some enable this access to allow them to reboot their gateways while they are away, if needed.

 

However, Remote Management (over the WAN interface) is disabled by default, for very good reasons, and most people (myself included) leave it disabled.

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