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How To Use A TP-Link Router With Sky Fibre Optic

How To Use A TP-Link Router With Sky Fibre was originally written on 07th June 2017, but has been updated on 24th June 2020.

The Sky OEM router is fine for the vast majority of cases, but if you want more functionality, better signal strength, or advanced features like VPN support or parental controls, you’re going to want to use a TP-Link router with Sky fibre.

In this article I’ll be showing you how you can replace the OEM Sky router with a much better, TP-Link device.

Why Change?

The OEM Sky router is fine for most uses, but some people want more functionality than what “normal” routers can offer. Or, maybe your router is simply swamped in a sea of wireless networks from your neighbours, and you want a better signal strength.

Whichever it is, an after-market router is generally a much better alternative to the OEM routers that are made as cheaply as possible so they can be given to thousands of people for free.

After having a lot of issues with wireless myself, I decided to replace my OEM Sky router with a TP-Link AC1200 (costing approximately £45 from Amazon) for my Sky fibre connection. I’m so glad I did!

June 2020 update: I’ve since upgraded my Wi-Fi network with a TP-Link Deco M5 mesh Wi-Fi system which has vastly improved my wireless network.

Setting It Up

Setting up the TP-Link router with Sky fibre is extremely simple. Whilst it’s not quite plug and play, the process is very simple:

  1. Plug in your TP-Link to a power supply and connect the grey DSL cable to the corresponding port on the back of your router.
  2. Connect the other end of your DSL cable to the micro-filter than comes with the router and connect it to your phone socket. If you already have a micro-filter, replace it with the new one.
  3. Connect the network cable to port 1 on the router, then connect the other end to your laptop.
  4. Open a browser window and navigate to http://192.168.1.1.
  5. The TP-Link will ask you to set an admin password – make sure you use something secure, as Password123 ain’t gonna cut it!
  6. Once in, the TP-Link setup wizard will start:
    • Input your location and time zone. Click Next.
    • Select Sky(MER)_VDSL from the ISP list. Make sure it’s this one, as this is Sky fibre. The other Sky option in the list is for Sky Broadband and will not work for fibre connections.
    • In the username field, enter abcdefgh@skydsl
    • In the password field, enter 1234567890abcdef
    • Click Next, then set up your wireless network how you see fit.
    • The TP-Link will then test the Internet connection and you should see a success message. If you do not, wait for the DSL light to stop flashing and try again – it should work just fine.
  7. That’s it! You’re now connected to Sky fibre via your new TP-Link router.
Tp-Link Admin UI

Explore

Now you have your new router connected, you can start to have a look around the admin interface and change the settings as needed. Here are some of the changes I made:

  • Disabled WPS – it’s insecure and easily hacked, so turn it off.
  • Added my NAT rules so that traffic will route to my server.
  • Turned on and configured the guest network, so guests don’t have access to my server.
  • Changed the IP Subnet and DHCP pool. This was only so I didn’t have to re-configure all my existing devices that have static addresses.

Conclusion

Overall, I’m very happy with the TP-Link VR200. The connection has been rock solid and it has served me well for over 3 years now.

Using a TP-Link router with Sky fibre has many advantages and it’s an extremely well priced router compared to the functionality it offers. The only downside is that it is a lot bigger than the OEM Sky router. But I can live with that for the additional functionality it offers.

I have had feedback from hundreds of people that this process works, but if you’re struggling I would suggest the Sky fibre forums. But if you’re really stuck, feel free to leave a comment below, or contact me.

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Comments

Please read my commenting guidelines before posting a comment.

  1. Hello Kev,

    I am using a TP-Link VR600 and during the connection test is just states Sorry! Internet not connected. Please reconfigure your parameters. If the problem still exists please contact your ISP. Why am I doing wrong?

    Thank you

    1. Hey Dan, does the VR600 support VDSL? Thats fibre. ADSL is normal broadband.

      If it does support VDSL and you’ve followed the instructions above, I don’t know, sorry.

  2. Thanks for the advice Kev – as you suspected I hadn’t put the Deco in AP mode – I have now.
    The TP Link Archer AC1200 router turned up today and thanks to your incredibly helpful guide getting it set up was a breeze. Strangely the Deco continued to work straight off the bat but the app couldn’t see them so I had reset them and start from scratch. After a bit of testing it became clear the NAS connection is still faster through the Deco than router but that’s fine.
    So, thanks to you, a system that previous gave me about 17-24 mbs depending on where I was in the house, now gives me somewhere between 50-60mbs! That’s incredible and I am truly grateful for your blog and your advice.
    Best wishes to you.

  3. i want to know if is only this (TP-Link AC1200) kind of router wich can replace a sky router or could be any type of tp link?
    thank you

  4. Hi, I was just wondering if anyone has any experience setting up the TP-Link AC1200 with NowTv Fab Fibre? I can see a few comments previously which I’ve also tried and unfortunately didn’t work for me. Any other suggestions or recent changes that anyone knows about?

  5. Great blog and I was inspired to get a new TP Link router in the hope of improving Sky’s dismal speed and coverage. Then the mesh idea seemed a great one too but when I looked into it, it seems the first mesh device gets plugged in to the router and the router’s Wi-Fi gets turned off. So my question is, if I get a mesh system, is there still benefit to be had from getting a TP Router if the Wi-Fi signal from it is only going to get turned off?
    Thanks in advance of any reply.
    Best wishes.

    1. The router and the mesh handle two different things – the router will handle the internet connection and routing (obviously) and the mesh will handle all the Wi-Fi. Upgrading both is fine, but if you’re not having problems with Wi-Fi, I’d just upgrade the router.

      If you are having Wi-Fi issues, I’d recommend just upgrading the router for now, as after-market routers are far superior to the free ones you get from your provider. The mesh kit is pretty expensive, so if you’re still having issues with Wi-Fi after upgrading your router, then you can get a mesh system, which should help.

      Alternatively, if you’re happy with the router itself and you’re only having Wi-Fi problems, them just getting mesh is fine too. Ultimately, you can do whatever you like. I’d personally recommend upgrading the router first to see if that fixes all your problems.

    2. Thanks for your reply Kev.
      So I had a Curry’s gift voucher and on a whim got the 3 unit TP Deco M5 system which was £129. Plugged my Sky router into it, placed the second on the 1st floor and third on the 2nd floor. Not only do I now have reliable coverage everywhere (even in the garage and garden) but there has been a significant uplift in download speed. I had a NAS and a Hive hub plugged into the back of my original Sky hub and the guy at Curry’s said to leave them there. The Hive hub was fine but the NAS, uploading stuff to it no longer worked (although strangely I could stream from it). So for that I unplugged it from the Sky router and plugged it in to the M5 and that solved it. Again performance markedly improved.
      So now, to see if I can squeeze a bit more out of the system I am waiting on delivery of the TPlink AC1200 router and will be following your helpful guide to the letter.
      I’ll let you know how I get on.
      Thanks again.

    3. Glad it helped. I hope you put the Deco in AP mode. Sounds like you may not have, which is why your NAS may not have worked. Switch it to AP mode using the app to prevent double NAT, which should improve performance more.

  6. I am so happy I found your blog and I absolutely love your information about how to use a tp link router with sky fibre optic. I liked and it is wonderful to know about so many things that are useful for all of us! Thanks a lot for this amazing blog!!

  7. Got the AC1200 saw speed difference straight away, however couple of queries on setup, got until end of september to return the router:

    1. Is using the same SSID for both 5 and 2.5Ghz networks good practive seems to work, however I cannot get Sky Q mini box connected 🙁 wirelessly

    2. Other option use TPLink router as secondary AP? and get all clients except sky to connect. As I get the dreaded message “access temporarily full” have around 15 connections

    1. I have no experience of Sky Q, so can’t help there, sorry. It’s fine to have the same SSID for 2.4 & 5 GHz.

    2. Thank you. I have setup the TPLink router as secondary AP, will keep the sky router just for TV and sky mini box, until I find a solution to replace completely. All my other device clients connect to TPLink wireless wifi network, so far so good. SKY Q router SR203 wireless capablity shocking.

    3. Update: Got the Sky Q mini box working on wifi. Connected via wps to the main Sky Tv hub. Thanks again.

  8. Hey Kev,

    I just wanted to drop you a line to say that was a terrific guide on how to get TP-Link routers working with Sky Fibre. I would feedback that you could include some additional steps about how to get Sky Q etc connected for those less savvy with that process but otherwise great work.

    I purchased an Archer VR 2800 and I’ve already noticed my peak Download Speeds up around 7Mbps and with some powerlines etc connected (thank god for 4 lan ports again) I have seen consistent speeds across the network and the bandwidth management has been fantastic. One of my main gripes while gaming on the Sky Router is that it’s network traffic management was awful and at times when a YouTube video was initially loaded I would see an immediate lag on screen. This appears to be gone now.

    If anyone is on the fence about switching, just do it!

    1. Hey John, thanks for the comment. I’ve never been a Sky Q customer, so have no experience in that. That’s why that information doesn’t exist in the post. I’m glad this worked for you though. 🙂

  9. Thanks for this. Had similar issues with it not presenting me with the username/password fields. So I upgraded the firmware to the latest version and then it worked perfectly

  10. Great article Kev. After doing some research, I decided to go for the Archer VR900, and set it up perfectly with the help of your guide. To my dismay, I found the wireless performance to be dismal, and worse than the OEM Sky router it replaced. We have a fairly small 1970s house, and found the coverage very poor. Even moving the router to the bottom of the stairs, the signal doesn’t cover all 3 bedrooms upstairs, requiring one of the kids to have to sit at the top of the stairs to get a signal! I also found the wifi to be occasionally unstable to the point that standing right next to it, and pinging the IP address of the router itself, gave very long response times or would drop packets completely. I updated the firmware to the latest available, but that didn’t help. On further investigation, I realized Amazon have sent me the V1 Model whereas the V3 is the latest version, so maybe the older models are not as good. Obviously no problem with your article which was spot on, just really disappointed with my experience of the VR900, so sharing this for reference in case it helps others. I may return it and see if i can get the newer version, and see if that helps!

    1. Hey Mark, thanks for the comment. It may also be a signalling issue. Try changing the wifi channel within the settings. One of you neighbours may have a very strong antennae that’s knocking your wifi off.

  11. Perfect guide. I’ve been having disconnect issues for months. Swapped to TP-Link router and it works perfectly. Thanks <3

    1. Hi Alex,
      Which model router did you go for?
      Also, was it the Sky Q router you replaced and are you on Sky Fibre Max?
      Cheers

    2. The router I used to replace the Sky one is the AC1200 – https://amzn.to/2Vfx8qV

      A number of people have contacted me to say that they replaced their Sky Q router with this model and everything worked fine. Good luck.

  12. Ac1200 on sky fibre just stopped working.
    Hi I set the new router up about a month ago and it’s been working fine until last night.
    Now it won’t connect even after doing a quick setup and putting in authentication details.
    Anyone else had this issue?

    1. Have you tried your old router to see if that works? If it doesn’t, it’s probably an issue at Sky’s end.

    2. Hi Kev. Turns out to be a line issue. Phone doesn’t work and have loads of static on the line when you pick up the handset. First thing I did when posting this was to swap back to the sky router. Strangely after half a day the router works even with the dodgy line. Download is close to normal but upload is pretty close to 0. Now waiting for openereach to sort it.
      Hopefully when fixed I can put the archer back as it’s way better than the standard sky one.
      Having said that it does connect with its bad line when then archer does not.

  13. I transferred to Now from Sky. I had the AC1200 set up as above for Sky fibre. The switchover took place without me having to touch a thing. Seamless. Not entirely surprising as they are basically the same company but I hope this is useful for some .

  14. thanks Kev

    I’d just realised the AX1100 was a router not modem/router, doh! and can’t find a VDSL modem router with Wi-Fi 6 with correct Sky options.

    So might look at the Archer 2100 , run it in bridged mode and add a Wi-Fi mesh or router.

    cheers Matt

  15. Great guide and really informative – do you know if all TP-Link routers work / or others manufacturers have this option?

    Just debating ditching Sky to move to Virgin as you can put their router into modem mode which would then allow me to run Wi-Fi 6 (my ER115 hub is terrible for coverage).

    But another option after reading your guide would be to get a new TP-Link Wifi 6 router and just run that.

    thanks Matt

    1. Hey Matt. Any router that supports VDSL will work with fibre broadband. If you switch to Virgin you will need to buy a router that supports cable connections.

    2. Thanks Kev will take a look to see if the new archer does.

      Yep if went Virgin route at least can put their unit into modem mode and have free reign on choice but to be fair to Sky their service has been stable/quick just awful Wi-Fi.

      thanks Matt

    3. I’ve just had a look at the AX11000 and it’s a cable router. So it would work with Virgin, but not Sky. A close equivalent that works with Sky would be the VR2100 – https://amzn.to/2XcLFoq

      If you’re having wifi problems, I replaced the router wifi with a mesh system. It’s brilliant – https://amzn.to/2XddzAz

  16. Really wanted this to work, but i never got any of the dropdown options that you did. Just could not get it working and it’s looking like i will just be returning the device 🙁

    1. Which device did you buy? I get messages most days informing me this worked.

    2. It is the TP-Link Archer C1200. I never got any of the dropdown options that others seem to have. Spent a few hours trying to figure it out. It seems to work for others, so i can only assume that i am doing something wrong.

    3. The C1200 is for cable connections, not fibre ADSL. If you have Sky Fibre, you got the wrong router.

    4. Ahhhhhh. Thank you so much for the help. What should i get instead?

    5. I recommend one in the article – https://amzn.to/2Vfx8qV

      It’s very close to the one you bought, and looks almost exactly the same, but it’s designed for the kind of internet connection you have.

  17. I’m using NowTV Fab Fibre which is a rebadged Sky Fibre and have spent the evening setting up a TP Link AC1900 Archer VR900. The Sky(MER)_VDSL preset settings don’t ask for a username and password, and also don’t work.

    I managed to get the VDSL connected by:

    – choosing “Other” in the ISP settings selector
    – enabling VLAN ID and setting it to 101
    – enabling MER
    – using the username and password from your article (abcdefgh@skydsl and 1234567890abcdef respectively)

    Just in case anyone else was in a similar situation!

  18. Hi. I’m about to switch to Sky Ultrafast which is G.Fast or ‘hybrid fibre’ I believe. I was hoping to invest in Deco M5 mesh system to strengthen signal in house and garden. Do you think your set up applies to G.Fast?

    1. I don’t know what G Fast is. Hybrid fibre sounds like standard fibre broadband to me, where it’s fibre to the cabinet, then copper to the house. Hence the hybrid bit. 😊

      Anyway, aside from that, the M5 will plug into any standard router, so it should boost your signal around your home just fine.

  19. Best, most informative thread I have found in a long time. Simple as it should be.

    So my question, I have Sky Fibre Max and the Wi-Fi is great most of the time, but not always considering the awesome speeds I get to the router.

    So do I get a few extenders or a mesh type setup? No gaming just lots of TV streaming mainly.

    Lots of Channel traffic in my street.

    Keep up the good work,
    Sean

    1. Hey Sean, thanks for the kind comment, I’m glad you found the post useful. I think if the WiFi is already pretty just and you just want to extend it a little, mesh may be overkill. Mesh certainly won’t do it any harm, but extenders should be fine for streaming TV etc.

      These are the ones I would recommend – https://amzn.to/2WrJehj

      Note: WiFi is pretty much always slower than a wired connection, so there will always be some speed loss. As long as you’re getting more than 3-4 Mbps download though, you should be fine with streaming TV.

      Good luck!

  20. how do you find out what type of sky broadband you have, without having to call them? i am fed up with the sky router and its issues, but we have sky q multiroom and i was worried it would cause me more issues if i swapped it out. any help appreciated ! i imagine it would be a long wait to talk to someone with covid

    1. I really don’t think it will be a long wait because of COVID – it’s not like they’re coming to you house. 🙂

      You Sky Bill should tell you what Internet package you are paying for.

  21. Thank you for this guide, I have just purchased the TP-Link Deco M5 mesh Wi-Fi as mentioned above. I have Sky Q with BB. As you quite rightly point out Sky Q is just the television but, if you have the multiscreen boxes they work on a mesh system. In theory they are supposed to boost the internet around the house, the emphasis here being on supposed. It certainly does not work in our house. Fingers crossed this will be a huge improvement. Thank you for an excellent guide.

  22. Hi Kev – Thanks for that . I got the proposed router name wrong it should have been TP-Link AC1200 VR400 like yours. The main reason we got the Mesh was for time limits for usage and bedtime set up on the Deco as it saves arguments. Doe the VR400 have that if we use the Deco in AP mode? Happy to get one and ditch the sky router!!

    1. Hey Shaun, yeah you can limit times of use for different devices on the router. There’s a parental controls tab.

    2. Thanks, Kev. Just placed an order for Av400 router. Out of interest did you turn off Wifi on the router and just use Decos for wifi access? This is my plan as thought having M5 right next to router would be a waste and may interfere with signal.

    3. Yeah. WiFi is disabled on the router, and the Decos are the only thing running Wifi in the house.

    4. Update to keep this consistent. The VR400 Archer arrived this afternoon. Followed instruction here. COnnected to Sky Fibre perfectly. Then changed Deco M5’s to Access Points and everything working really well. No stuttering on games or video chat anymore!!

  23. Hi – I am on Sky Fibre and also have the Deco M5. It works really well apart from double NAT as have the Decos setup as Router not APs. If I set them up as AP we lose the parental controls which is one of the main reasons for the Deco. Do you have the Deco as Router? If so are you still using the TD-W9970 as a modem with them? I’d love to get this working !

    1. If you still want all the parental controls etc. Then you will need to basically turn your router into a modem. So you will need to turn off DHCP and NAT on the router, so that’s all handled by the decos.

      Personally I have it in AP mode and have all the routing on the router. If you have a TP Link router too, it should have parental controls too. You could also use services like Open DNS for parental controls.

      The reason I say this is that it’s best to have the router do the routing as that’s what it was built for, but you definitely need to avoid double NAT.

      If I were you I’d go for AP mode on the decos then use Open DNS for parental controls.

    2. I have a sky fibre router and I’m looking to attach a tp link n router via home plugs to have WiFi in my shed, can this be done? If so can you help please?
      Oh I have the BT home plugs.

    3. Hey Neil. That would work, but there is a better solution. A WiFi extender would be cheaper and should work fine. You would just plug it into a plug socket in your garage and you should be good. That’s assuming your garage is on the same wiring loom as your house, which most are.

      Here’s the extender I would recommend – https://amzn.to/3ekiTrx

  24. excellent guide, after many months of awful internet i tried an ac1200, plugged in followed this guide and 15mins all worked a treat, many thanks!!

    1. Interesting. That’s not something I had to do. Thanks for sharing.

  25. Great guide, mate. I currently have Sky Q and obviously the router accompanying it. Am I right in thinking I can replace the Q router with something like this (or a dedicated gaming router) and I should have no problems with Sky connection or features?
    Much appreciated.

    1. So as I understand it, Sky Q is just a television service and has nothing to do with the Internet connection. As long as you have Sky Fibre broadband, this process should work. However, since I’ve never been a Sky Q customer, I can’t say whether or not this would impact the Sky Q service.

      Looking at the Sky site, you can get just the Sky Q service without Internet, so I’m pretty confident it will work with any Internet connection (and therefore any router), but like I said, I can’t be 100%. Worst case, order a router from Amazon and sent it back if it doesn’t work. Amazon’s return policies are very good.

  26. Hi.
    Works fine on TP-Link AC1600 (Archer VR600), just installed, everything easy and works great. Thx for solution.
    01.07.2020

    1. There isn’t. But the Vigor 130 is your MODEM, so you would have to configure the connection details on that rather than the TP-Link.

      Once logged into the Vigor, you would need to:

      1. Go to Internet Access on the left bar.
      2. General setup
      3. Under VSDL2, change the drop-down to Enabled (you will likely need to reboot at this point)
      4. Once it’s rebooted, you should be able to configure fibre connection as shown in this post.

      You may need to play with the settings – I don’t have a Draytek to confirm the process with so can’t be any more help than this.

  27. This isn’t working for me, the dsl light is showing but my Internet is FTTP not via the telephone port

  28. kev,
    I have bought TP link VR 400 and tried the attached and it has not connected. It is not giving me an internet connection. Is there anything else you can suggest? I have typed the user name and password multiple times.

    My google mesh dropped out on Thursday after a 2 hour sky broadband outage and so I wan to switch to another router.

    thanks and y any help appreciated

    1. Hi Julian, if Sky had an issue on the line, then a new router won’t help with that. Without seeing the process you followed on your router, I can’t really assist. I’ve had a number of people tell me this process still works, but I can’t be sure as I am no longer a sky customer.

    1. Bottom of the post…

      “Update March 2020 – This process still works just fine, but I have had some questions around the username and password. You need to enter the username and password exactly as it is shown in the instructions above.”

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