Network setups can be complicated, and it can make things even trickier when introducing a new device to your network. If you're adding your Circle device to a network that includes more than one router, there are some points you should be aware of. If these tips don't help for your specific situation, or you have questions about your specific router model and your Circle device's compatibility, please feel free to reach out to us using the contact links below.
Note: There is a bit of geek-speak ahead here. If you are reading this and none of it makes sense, it's very likely that it doesn't apply to your home Wi-Fi. These configurations are not common for typical home Wi-Fi networks. If an IT professional helped configure your network, please consult with them if you have any concerns related to your setup.
Need some assistance pairing Circle with your advanced network? Keep the below details in mind, but also try our Circle Pairing walkthrough below! After the walk through you will see more info about extenders, firewalls, mesh networks, and more.
The Circle device works with a majority of extenders, but you'll want to make sure they are setup with the same SSID as your main network, or attached to your router over ethernet. Check here to see if your extender has been marked as incompatible with the Circle device by our team.
In general though, we do not recommend pairing your Circle device with an extender if you have the option. If you have an extender on your network and are having issues setting your Circle device up, try powering off the extender temporarily until the Circle device is paired. Then plug your Circle device directly into your router using the provided ethernet cord and power on the extender. Don't pair your Circle device with a Wi-Fi network that has the same name as your normal network but with an added "_EXT". That's the extender's network, and pairing to that will mean the Circle device can't see the rest of your network.
Many routers have security settings turned on by default to help protect against unwanted internet traffic and ensure the safety of your home network. However, some routers have firewall settings that may filter out the Circle device's requests to reach the internet.
Please take a look at our Advanced Firewall page for information about settings to check in your router's configuration. If you think you're having issues related to your firewall, you can log into your router to change its settings. We don't recommend turning your firewall completely off, but you can lower the settings and try to use your Circle device with these changes.
The majority of routers have a "guest network" feature that will create a separate Wi-Fi network for your guests to use. Typically these types of networks have security settings (like client isolation) that make it difficult for the Circle device to manage devices on them. We don't recommend pairing your Circle device with a guest network during setup. If you want to make sure that your Circle device is tracking your family's devices, we recommend turning the guest network feature off, or changing the network's password and only giving it out to guests. Check out this page for more on how the Circle device works with guest networks. Also, our router compatibility list has a few devices marked as having a known issue with the Circle device and your router's guest network feature.
Mixed connection networks
Some routers are capable of combining the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands and creating one SSID for your WiFi network. Typically, the Circle device works great with this type of configuration.
If your router combines the 2.4GHz network and 5GHz network and you're having issues pairing your Circle device with it, you might need to separate the bands temporarily during setup and then combine them again after the Circle device is paired (in this case, we recommend also plugging in your Circle device via ethernet after you're set up). Refer to your router's manual for how to separate these bands.
Is your Circle device not tracking devices when they're connected to the 5GHz band? Certain routers are incompatible with the Circle device. Check out our router compatibility list to see if there is a known issue with the Circle device and your router's chipset. If you're concerned that something is wrong when using the 5GHz band on your router, contact our support team using the information at the bottom of this page.
The Circle device works with a majority of mesh network systems, but occasionally they can have issues pairing. When you're initially setting up your Circle device, you might need to separate the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands and power down your mesh networks satellite units, while leaving the main gateway up. Your gateway unit is the one that is connected to your home's modem via an ethernet cord. Satellite units might connect to it via ethernet, or more likely, via a mesh wireless network. Pair your Circle device to the 2.4GHz network, and then plug it in via ethernet. Afterwards, you can bring your satellite units back up. Just make sure to set them as "Unmanaged" if they appear in the Circle app's device list.
The Circle device can only manage one subnet at a time, and will only see traffic that goes through the subnet it is paired with. If you have multiple network segments, through the use of a guest network or otherwise, make sure that you only connect devices you want your Circle device to manage to the same subnet as the Circle device is on. For more on how your Circle device handles multiple subnets or VLANs, check out this article.
IP or MAC Spoofing Checks
Some routers enable you to turn on a security feature that keeps devices on the network from spoofing their IP or MAC address. Typically, IP or MAC address spoofing is used to elude detection on a network. The Circle device's filtering and management tools use similar practices to MAC address spoofing, so we don't recommend enabling MAC or IP spoofing checks on the network you want the Circle device to manage.
A common setting in AT&T branded routers (usually manufactured by Arris) is "IP Passthrough", which will cause issues between the router and your Circle device if connected via ethernet. If you'd like to use the Circle device over ethernet, please make sure this setting is disabled. You can read instructions for doing so here.
Certain ASUS routers can enable a feature known as NAT acceleration, that does not work well with the Circle device's features. If your router is capable of NAT acceleration and you're having issues with the Circle device that is related to slowness or connectivity over ethernet, we recommend turning NAT acceleration off. Check your router's manual for how to do so, and here for a list of affected routers.
Two Linksys routers (AC1900 EA7500 & AC2600 EA8500) feature an option called Express Forwarding, that does not work well with the Circle device's features. If you own one of these routers and Express Forwarding is enabled, we recommend turning it off for the Circle device to work properly. Check your router's manual for detailed instructions.
Your Internet service provider might have provided you with a modem/router combo for your house. You may have also connected a second router to this for WiFi connections. As mentioned above (under the "Multiple Subnets" section), the Circle device will only manage one network at a time. Make sure that your Circle device is paired with whichever router the devices you want managed are also connected to. If you're pairing your Circle device over WiFi, make sure that this is the network your other devices currently connected to, and make sure they don't switch between multiple wireless networks. If you're plugging the Circle device in via ethernet, make sure that it is to the router that the devices you want to manage are connected to.
Circle and Mobile Hotspots, or Satellite Connections
Circle was developed for use with your typical home router using a DSL or Cable connection to the Internet. Mobile hotspots and satellite connections tend to be incompatible with Circle and we cannot guarantee that Circle will work to manage these types of networks.