Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

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Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:20 pm

LTE FIX receives a significant number of inquiries regarding our Cradlepoint CBA850 routers and its MC400 Multi-Carrier modems. Our new and refurbished CBA850's are available with both MC400LPE and MC400LP6 modems.

I will answer some of the more common questions with a brief explanation and illustration for different styled configurations.

The Cradlepoint CBA850 router uses an USB type plug-in MC400 Modem. The MC400LP6 is a CAT6 modem which uses a special version of the Sierra Wireless MC7455 card which it identifies by its TAC number. Therefore, a stock (OEM) MC7455 modem is not recognized by, or compatible with the Cradlepoint router software (firmware).

The MC400LPE is a CAT3 modem which uses the Sierra Wireless MC7345/MC7355 card.

The Cradlepoint MC400LP6 (CAT6) modems support SIM-Based Auto-Carrier selection. Simply insert the SIM Card and wait for the router to automatically detect the SIM and establish a connection.

The MC400LPE (CAT3) modems are also multi-carrier--but they are not auto-carrier selection. The firmware for a particular carrier is easily uploaded and installed from within the Cradlepoint router web user interface.

The CBA850 software and the MC400LP6 and MC400LPE modem firmware for the different carriers may be downloaded from HERE.

An activated SIM Card from most major US carriers and devices will work with these modems. Sprint is the exception. The MC400LPE and MC400LP6 must be provisioned thru Sprint along with the correct SIM Card for the device.

UPDATE: LTE FIX offers our customers a solution for provisioning the CBA850LP6 and CBA850LPE for use on the Sprint network. MOBILE SWAP SHOP can assist the customer to swap an active hotspot plan (no phone plans permitted) from a third party Sprint provider over to the Cradlepoint router. They have been very successful with this process.

LTE FIX provides the following option to its customers:

1. The customer purchases the Cradlepoint router and the proper Sprint SIM Card for the MC400 modem.
2. The customer provides a message upon checkout in the Note box to "Hold shipping pending a successful swap"
3. We forward (via email) the IMEI and SIM Card ICC ID to the customer.
4. The customer provides Mobile Swap Shop the IMEI and SIM Card ICC ID.
5. Once the swapping is successful, the customer will reply to our email with instructions to "ship the order".
6. If Mobile Swap Shop cannot swap the device and plan, the customer may reply to our email to "cancel the order and refund payment".

It is the customer's responsibility to assure that Sprint service is adequate and available in their area. Once the router is activated and shipped, our default return policy applies.

Disclosure: LTE FIX is not affiliated with Mobile Swap Shop and we receive no compensation for our referrals. We make no representation as to how the renewal of any third party hotspot plan may affect the future use and/or activation of a device. We strongly recommend to never allow your hotspot subscription to elapse to help avoid potential issues.


Please refer to the links to the Sierra Wireless MC7xxx for more information on these cards and the carrier's bands they support, but here is a quick comparison of the two:

LPE vs LP6 Band Comparison.png
LPE vs LP6 Band Comparison.png (32.92 KiB) Viewed 2497 times

The CBA850 router has two powering options. It can be powered with the standard 12V DC power adapter, or with a 48V PoE power adapter/injector (PSE). PoE refers to Power over Ethernet which, in a nutshell, simply allows a suitable Ethernet cable to transport the power (and data) from the adapter/injector to the router.


CBA850 Powering Options.png


The CBA850 has two primary modes of operation. It can perform all primary routing functions, or act simply as a modem using IP Passthrough (aka, Bridge Mode) to a second router that performs all the routing functions. Note that the CBA850 router does not have WiFi so it must depend on another device (i.e., router, Access Point….) to provide devices with WiFi.

CBA850 Router Mode:

CBA850 Routing Functions.png


CBA850 IP Passthrough (Modem) Mode:

CBA850 IP Passthrough.png

Note that the CBA850's mode of operation is not dependent on a specific power option.


The diversity of modes and powering options make the CBA850 a perfect candidate for remote installations in an external antenna or enclosure.


CBA850 and WiFiX 700-2700 MIMO Antenna (internal enclosure):

CBA850 PoE WiFiX MIMO Antenna Enclosure.png

CBA850 and WiFiX 700-2700 MIMO mounted in separate WiFiX Medium Enclosure

CBA850 PoE WiFiX MIMO Antenna & Seperate Enclosure.png

In both above styled installations, the CBA850 can function as the primary router or as simply the modem (using the IP Passthrough function).


Some may find it more convenient using the Enclosure method, and mounted at a level where the router is more easily accessed (i.e., for swapping SIM cards). This method also has the advantage of using dual Directional Panels, Omni-directional Radome, Yagis, and/or other types of MIMO antennas.

CBA850 Antenna Options With Enclosure.png

In posts to follow, we will look at some of the Cradlepoint settings and configurations.

PLEASE DO NOT POST A REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE ON THIS TUTORIAL.

USE THE QUESTIONS AND SUPPORT FORUM FOR HELP.
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Donnyb (Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:48 pm)

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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Sun Jan 13, 2019 11:18 pm

FIRST TIME USE

I recommend configuring the CBA850 to obtain a valid internet connection prior to its final point of installation. There are a few settings that will help save time later in the process. I will explain just a few.

In order to login to the CBA850 for the first time, obtain (write down) the router's default password which is listed on the bottom label of the CBA850.

Connect your PC to the LAN 1 Ethernet port on the CBA850. LAN 2 POE is by default set to IP Passthrough and requires a valid internet connection before you can access the router, and then, on a different IP address than LAN 1. This can later be changed in the configuration process.

Enter the login IP Address of 192.168.0.1 in your web browser and the Cradlepoint NetCloud OS login will appear.


First Time Log in CBA850.png


Once logged in, a NetCloud Manager pop up screen will appear which has several WAN Connection option. If you are planning on using the MC400 modem for internet, bypass this section and click on the Start NetCloud OS.


Start the NetCloud OS.png


Set up a good password and select your Time Zone. If you lose or forget your password, you will have to reset the router by pressing the reset button (for 20 seconds) that is located on the bottom of the router. Thereafter, the router will have to be reconfigured using the default password.


Set Admin Password and Time Zone.png


On the next screen, I recommend you leave the WAN Verification ping to OFF until all configurations are made and an internet connection established:


Leave WAN Verify to OFF.png


Assuming you have a valid SIM card in the MC400 modem and given a few minutes, you should be up and connected in a few minutes. (I will edit this post to discuss a few more details about the modem at a later time.)

As mentioned previously, LAN 2 is used for POE applications. By default, LAN 2 is also configured for IP Passthrough. The strange thing about LAN 2 is by default, the Admin access in not enabled. We will compare LAN 1 and LAN2 default settings which may be easily edited to suit our installation or general use.


LAN 1 and LAN 2 OEM Settings.png


LAN 1 is set to NAT which, in a nutshell, allows the CBA850 to function as a router. LAN 2 is set to IP Passthrough which, in the same nutshell, allows the CBA850 to function as a modem (requiring a secondary router for the DHCP and other router functions). You will also noticed the different IP addresses assigned to each interface.

Either or both interfaces may be modified. We can modify LAN 2 from its default settings of IP Passthrough to NAT.


LAN2 IP Passthrough Settings.png
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Setting LAN2 to NAT Router Mode.png


Regardless of the LAN 2 settings, I recommend enabling the Admin Access when mounting the CBA850 in an external antenna or enclosure. This will allow Admin Access without first having to have an internet connection--which may come in handy.


Enabling Admin Access on LAN 2.png


After the configurations above have been saved, we can now see LAN 1 and LAN 2 interfaces are configured a like except on different IP addresses.


Configuring LAN1 and LAN2 in Router Mode.png


One action I recommend is the Scheduled Reboot (Daily) for a time that the router is normally not being used (i.e., 4AM).


CBA850 Scheduled Reboot.png

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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by Johnsieve » Tue Jan 15, 2019 8:42 am

A few other things to note after installing this and using it for a day.

First off, the CBA850 is a high quality router and Cradlepoint has a great reputation on a global basis.

My CBA850LP6 is used as my primary router. It runs cool and has thus far been very stable using Sprint. The router receives software updates and seems to focus on security(i.e., TLS settings in cmd, and cipher suites).

I enabled UPnP gateway for my network so misc devices can get out to the net and interact (kids ipad, switch, xbox, etc). I disabled QoS on the modem (personal preference, and may change back if i get buffer bloat).

I also changed system logging level to "critical" to keep CPU and space down, not that it has been a lot. I just don't need the detail unless I am trying to diagnose some problem.

I wanted to change cellular bands on the modem which may be accomplished through the device console at SYSTEM > SYSTEM CONTROL > DEVICE OPTIONS > DEVICE CONSOLE.

From there you can access the AT Command Terminal by simply running the atterm command.

Note that running the command help will return a list of the various topics.


EDITED by ADMIN to include Image:

CBA850LP6 AT Terminal.png

From there you can configure and lock bands using the same AT Commands used on the Sierra Wireless MC7455 (or MC7354) modem card.

You must still enter the AT Command

Code: Select all

at!entercnd="A710" 
in the AT Command Terminal in order to configure bands, and issue an

Code: Select all

at!reset
once done creating your bands.


One thing to note when programming the modem is that it will revert back to all bands (at!band=00) IF you do not input your band command at startup from connection manager.

For example, I programmed band 26 as AT!BAND=10, so that command is my startup at command.

Capture.PNG
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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:47 am

Another useful tool in the Cradlepoint software is the modem connection information which includes signal stats (live time):

CBA850LP6 Connection Status.png

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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:40 pm

The AT Command terminal may also be accessed using PuTTY which seems to work better for copying and pasting AT Commands.

Using PuTTY.png
Using PuTTY.png (37.72 KiB) Viewed 2506 times

Login name: admin (unless you changed it)
Password: (the password you used when setting up the CBA850)

Once logged into the CBA850 the AT Command terminal is accessed by typing the command:

Code: Select all

atterm
CBA850 SSH with PuTTy.png
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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by Johnsieve » Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:16 pm

A couple more tweaks, i added some DHCP options so some websites and TV apps will better locate me for weather, local commercials, etc. under networking, go to local networks>local IP networks>edit>IPv4 DHCP and add option 123 and 144, add the hexadecial value you generate from http://scarff.id.au/tools/rfc-3825-loca ... ation.html

Capture.PNG
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Another thing, if you don't have a secondary wan using the other ethernet port, you can re-assign that port to your network, and use it. Under networking, go to VLAN Interfaces, edit the VLAN interface you don't need/want. and then edit the interface you use, and add port to your VLAN, in my case, it was port 0U and 1U

Capture1.PNG
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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Wed Apr 03, 2019 9:51 am

When upgrading the CBA850 software to latest versions, it may be necessary to reformat the storage.

When this is required, a notice will be displayed with a button to Format Persistent Storage. Click the button and afford it a minute or two.


CBA850 Format Persistent Storage.png

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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by JimHelms » Sat Apr 20, 2019 10:43 am

This is an example of the Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 installed within an External Enclosure.

The router is powered via a 48V PoE Adapter Injector over a single CAT6A Ethernet cable.

The router will be run in IP Passthough mode and connected to an indoor router which will perform the normal routing function and provide the WiFi.

The router case and the steel cover on the MC400LP6 modem was removed for maximum cooling.

This setup with the N type Female bulkhead connectors installed though the enclosure offers the option of using Omni-directional Antennas or connecting a MIMO or other directional antennas using short low loss cables.

CBA850LP6 in External Enclosure.jpg

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Re: Cradlepoint CBA850LP6 Introduction | Installation Options

Post by RockyinNM » Sun Apr 21, 2019 1:29 pm

Very nice work, sir!
Thank you for sharing, Rocky
"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
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