Setting up Bomebox as Ethernet DHCP Master with a different IP address?

I have bitten the bullet and bought a Bomebox and am now trying to set it up so it can take over my complex and arcane MIDI setup. I am having a few problems - please pardon my naivety.

My first issue is with setting up the network. My Mac is connected to the Internet and my home network through Wifi so I can’t connect it to the Bomebox using Wifi.

So I have run an Ethernet cable between the Mac and the Bomebox and turned Wifi off on the Bomebox. As a result there is no DHCP server on the Ethernet side of things which means that both Mac and Bomebox default to IP addresses in the 169.254.x.x range. Is this an acceptable configuration?

I tried setting up the Bomebox as DHCP Master but it then takes the IP address 192.168.1.1 which is also my home network’s gateway address, and that causes problems on the Mac. Is there any way the Bomebox can be set up as DHCP server but with a different IP address?

Thank you!

Bruno

Hi, Bruno, and congratulations on your BomeBox purchase!

Yes, this is APIPA mode and will work, however you will not be able to also talk to other devices on your home network since as you said it is in the 192.168.1.x range.

I suggest that you set up BomeBox WiFi as a DHCP client. You would set up the desired SSID and password (of your existing home network). Your existing ethernet master will then assign the BomeBox an address in your existing network range.

I believe you can change the default ethernet master address under advanced configuration settings. I don’t have my BomeBox handy right now but I will look up where this is changed and get back to you. Note that you cannot have 2 ethernet masters running on the same network so while you are connected to your BomeBox with your Mac in this fashion, you will not be able to access your home network. If you only want to connect to BomeBox or the WiFi network at a given time, I would recommend you just leave it in APIPA mode. I suppose there might also be a setting on your Mac to bridge your ethernet and WiFi connections but that is beyond the scope of our discussion. Your Mac would essentially be on 2 separate networks simultaneosly.

If your WiFi router has an ethernet port, and a cable that can reach, you could also just hook up your BomeBox ethernet to your router and since you router is an ethernet master, and the default for ethernet on BomeBox is a client, both your BomeBox and your computer could connect over your existing network. In this configuration, both BomeBox and your Mac would be assigned an address by your home router. Your BomeBox via ethernet and your Mac via WiFi.

I hope this helps move you along in the right direction. I assume you want to really be able to connect to the internet and your BomeBox simultaneously but if not, APIPA mode will work or you could use BomeBox as a hotspot (with a different SSID) and then on your Mac just connect to your BomeBox SSID when you want to switch off of your home network.

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

Hi, here’s a quick guide where to find it in the Advanced Config.

After entering the Advanced Configuration (at bottom of web config pages), follow these steps:

image

Yes, thanks @florianbome !

I noticed also I got the following because I was set to DHCP client when making the change from DHCP client to static on protocol.

image

I clicked on Switch Protocol and then got the last screen shot you provided.

The protocol did not switch immediately so I was still able to complete the configuration.

@bagaeta

It would probably be good to have a network reset file on a thumb drive just in case you lock yourself out. Or of course you could always come through again as WiFi if you have WiFi set up as a hotspot.

Addition:

Also note to scroll down and make sure that disable DHCP for this interface is unchecked. You can set a start address, and limit the number of address and lease time. I noticed that on my system when I set to static, Disable DHCP was checked.

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

I recommend to do it like this:

  1. access the BomeBox via WiFi (to prevent being locked out during configuration)
  2. in the BomeBox web config, switch to Ethernet Master (this will configure DHCP correctly)
  3. now go to the Advanced Configuration (as shown above) and merely change the IP address, e.g. to 192.168.2.1

It’s easy to get the advanced settings wrong, so the fewer changes there, the better!

Now you should be able to connect your Mac via Ethernet to your BomeBox without conflict.

Thank you Steve and Florian. I tried it and it worked however on second thoughts I decided to also connect through Wifi so I can add my iPad to the network later if I can. I set up the Wifi as client on my home network.

It turns out that also setting up the Bomebox as DHCP master over Ethernet while connecting to the Wifi network causes some issues with the Mac attempting to connect twice and the connection constantly failing. So I reverted to APIPA mode for Ethernet.

With this configuration the Web config tool connects to the Bome box through Wifi (as shown by the IP address min the web browser). But does that mean that all MIDI connections between the Mac and the Bome box are now happening over Wifi rather than Ethernet? Or is the Bome network still taking advantage of the better bandwidth and stability of Ethernet (which is what I would prefer as I will be using quite a few tightly clocked MIDI streams when working from the DAW)? What would be the best way to configure the system so that the Mac uses Ethernet to connect to the Box (while also connecting to the wider Internet through Wifi) but the Box is accessible to the iPad over Wifi?

Thank you!

Bruno

You will also get a more stable (no jitter) connection over ethernet than WiFi.

For me, I connect my devices both through a low cost unmangaged switch, directly to my home router via ethernet and leave WiFI out of the mix (except for my iPad).

If you don’t need internet, then just connect your Mac directly to your BomeBox and let APIPA mode take it from there.

Of course, you may want to still use WiFi for an iPad or iPhone as

If you try to connect to BomeBox through both WiFi and ethernet at the same time, it will get quite confused and drop and switch connections on you.
I believe a future firmware update of BomeBox is planned so that you can pick the connection and then it will stop switching.

There is a mode you can set up in advanced settings to let your BomeBox connect to WiFi router for the internet and also allow it to pass data from an attached ethernet computer over to the internet. I’ve done it before but it can be a bit tricky to set up. If you are interested, I’ll try to recall my notes on how I did it. I think the key was setting it up so that NAT is enabled on the WiFi side.

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

Thank you for all the help. Unfortunately connecting to my home router tyhreough Ethernet is not possible. My studio is quite far away from my router and there’s no way I can run a blue cable through the house.

After trying all the different combinations I ended up resetting everything back to default and turning Wifi off, using only APIPA mode to connect to the Mac. With anything else the connection with the Bomebox kept on resetting with messages such as “pending” and “stale connection” and multiple attempted connections from the Mac showing up on the MIDI router page. So for the time being I’ll forego having Wifi connection to the iPad.

Now to the next part: understanding the MIDI routing and the Virtual MIDI ports. So far I have been able to connect my iConnectMIDI4+, my mio10, my Midihub and my Novation SL mk3 to the BomeBox and access all of these from the Mac. I am absolutely delighted that Auracle for X still sees the iConnectivity boxes through the Bomebox and allows configuring them without me having to unplug and replug, and that I can control Ableton with my SL mk3 as if it was plugged directly into the Mac (except for being able to identify the ports as they are only labelled 1,2,3 rather than MIDI, DIN, inCOntrol etc). The only hurdle so far is the Midihub Editor software that requires a direct connection to the Mac…

Hi,
It looks like you are on the way. I don’t think the iConnectMIDI 4+ can expose the port names to the host operating system (in this case, BomeBox) as anything but the factory defaultss (IE HST1,HST2 etc). I believe, however that you might be able to change the exposed port names in the mio10. Maybe not, but i know the mioXL allows you to do this. In the meantime, you will probably need to create a reference sheet to identify the exposed port names as something that makes more sense to you.

As far as the MIDIHub editor, I believe it uses a different interface to communicate with your MIDIHub so I believe a direct connection will be required to use the editor. Once you have made configuration changes with your computer, however, you should be able to use it just like any other MIDI device on your BomeBox, with whatever programming/pipes you created. You may want to talk to Blokas to see if they any future plans to have the MIDIHub editor to use pure MIDI to communicate with the MIDIHub. I doubt they do however since they use the interface to also update firmware of the MIDIHub so they are probably using a non-MIDI API to make things faster and easier for them.

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

Unfortunately I’m still stuck. I can’t get a stable connection between the Mac and the Bomebox even after doing a full factory reset of the Bomebox (thumb drive plus factory reset).

I had multiple Ethernet interfaces in the Mac’s network preference pane as I have a Thunderbolt dock plugged in which includes an extra Ethernet port. I disconnected the dock and removed the extra interfaces in the MacOS Network system preferences pane but the problem still occurs.

I have taken a screen shot of Web config showing multiple connection attempts from the Mac (one from Music-iMac and one from music-imac - different capitalisation. Sometimes there can be 2 or more pending music-imac connections listed). In Bome Network, the BomeBox connection keeps dropping, stating “Pending (off or not reachable)”.

I have tried a different Ethernet cable. No change.

I am running a late 2013 iMac and Mojave.

The Bomebox is connected through a powered USB hub to the 2 iConnectivity interfaces, a Novation SL 61 mk3, and the MidiHub. I tried unplugging the MIDIhub but the problem is still happening.

Any ideas what is happening?

Hi,
I’m sorry for your trouble.

At this point the crux of the issues seems to be that you have too many paths to follow between your computer and your BomeBox. Since you BomeBox only has one name, its name is exposed to all available network paths as the same name and therefore not determine which path to connect. Consequently it tends to cycle between available connection paths.

It is key that only ONE path is available for connection between BomeBox and your Mac to avoid connection confusion.

To help resolve this.

  1. Make sure that only ethernet path is available between your Mac and BomeBox (via APIPA)
  2. Shut off your BomeBox wireless connection if it is on.
  3. On your computer, delete any currently learned network connections using the Bome Network Tool
  4. On BomeBox, delete any currently learned network connection on the MIDI router page.
  5. If you get a connection request from other than your Mac over APIPA, do not accept the connection on your BomeBox. Again, make sure there is only ONE path from your iMac to your BomeBox

In your screenshot it shows both Music-Imac and music-imac. The lower case one seems to be the correct (APIPA) connection. Cancel any pending requests on your BomeBox from anything else.

I hope this helps!

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

As Steve said, whenever there are 2 network paths to the same BomeBox with different IP addresses, you will run into problems. No matter if using APIPA or not. In general, we recommend to use DHCP and not use the fall back APIPA.

I just now remember that the upcoming version of Bome Network will have an option to exclude networks for MIDI connections:

  1. Clean all network MIDI connections: click Disconnect in Bome Network and for all, and the same on the Network MIDI web config page.

  2. BomeBox WiFi: client to your WiFi router

  3. BomeBox Ethernet: direct cable connection to Mac.

    • Preferred way is to configure as “Ethernet Master”. To circumvent the IP address conflict with your WiFi router, use Advanced Config to set IP to 192.168.2.1 (as shown above).
    • Alternatively, use static IP address: BomeBox 192.168.2.1, and set static IP address on Mac for Ethernet to 192.168.2.2
    • Last option is to configure as “Ethernet Client”, using APIPA when connected to the Mac.
  4. Bome Network on Mac, version 1.4.2 beta (or later): go to Settings → Network Settings → Excluded Networks. Click the + button and select 192.168.1.255. This is your WiFi network.

Now Bome Network will only use the cabled Ethernet connection to the BomeBox. Make sure to initiate connections to the BomeBox on the computer (because the BomeBox will still see the two paths).

Side Note: we recommend to not connect the BomeBox to the Internet. Your WiFi router will act as a firewall which makes it relatively safe, but usually it’s better to separate your music network from the Internet. I realize that for your computer and your iPad it is useful to have Internet access AND BomeBox connectivity… just saying.

Now you just need the 1.4.2 beta version of Bome Network… I’ll contact you via PM for that.

Awesome,

Thanks @Florianbome , for chiming in!

Steve Caldwell
Bome Customer Care


Also available for paid consulting services: bome@sniz.biz

Thank you Steve and Florian! I set it up as Florian described, with the beta version, and it is a lot more stable. There were still some glitches with the Bomebox becoming extremely slow and unresponsive, and I think that resulted in the Mac attempting to reinitiate the connection, resulting in multiple Network MIDI connections from the same IP address (see screenshots below).

I suspected that it may be due to heavy background MIDI activity and maybe even some weird MIDI loops given how many ports and routes I had open with the iConnectMIDI, the mio10, the MidiHub and the SL mk3 (well over 1000 routes). Since Components (the Novation app) didn’t seem to connect properly to the SL mk3 through the Bomebox I decided to plug it back straight into the Mac. I also unplugged the MidiHub. The problems and glitches persisted so I turned off all the auto routes in the WebConfig (I had well over 1000 open auto routes). That seems to have done the trick so far…

Now I am going to set up only the routes that I need, once I understand what the ports, virtual ports and aliases mean in both WebConfig and the Network tool. Is there a resource where I can try to learn the paradigm rather than hassle you with questions?

It would also be useful if I could rename the ports so I can create the routes more easily. The iConnectivity ports only show up in a format like iConnectMIDI4+ [1], mio 10 [4] etc. I’m not sure that’s what they expose through USB as they show up with more informative names in Ableton when the interface is connected directly to the Mac. Do I understand correctly that if I purchase the Unlimited Names option I will be able to rename the ports? Will this renaming also affect the port names in the Bomebox/webconfig and what Ableton “sees” (rather than the generic “Bomebox: mio 10 [13]” type labels it shows at the moment)?

Or is it something that MIDI Translator Pro does? (I’m probably going to buy it as I need some complex routing/filtering/remapping as well)

Thank you!

Bruno

We have little control on what the iConnectivity provided names are. I’m not sure how they show up differently on your Mac than BomeBox. Maybe Mac USB port drivers are looking at some other information from the exposed ports.

If you got unlimited virtual ports you could route the confusing port names to names of your choice on your Mac but unfortunately the confusing names will still shown on BomeBox and the ports from BomeBox that it exposes to your Mac.

Also if you move your devices on your iConnectivity to different places, they show up differently.

Aliases are helpful for MT Pro projects (running on both BomeBox and computer), but they are not very useful outside of MT Pro.

I think the newer iConnectivity devices allow you to provide your own port names to be exposed. I’m not sure because I have an older iConnectivity MIDI 4+.

Steve

@bagaeta , indeed, more than 1000 auto-routes will cause a lot of MIDI traffic, and I assume most of that will not be needed – it duplicates every incoming MIDI message to every other MIDI OUT port. Auto-routes are really meant to quickly set up simple setups. And note that the Remote Direct MIDI ports don’t require any routes in the BomeBox.

On the other hand, you should be able to safely use all your USB devices on the BomeBox (if you manage the routes manually).

Actually, using MT Pro will also help you set up the needed MIDI Routes! When loading an MT Pro project into the BomeBox (and activating it), the project file will define the MIDI routes.

The MT Pro manual should give you a (technical) reference for what Aliases are and how to use them. There’s also a reference for the MIDI Router and virtual ports.

We hear your request for renaming MIDI ports, but we’re hesitant to add such a function into the BomeBox: it must be done very well, otherwise it will confuse users more than it helps.

Unlimited Named MIDI Ports will not help on the BomeBox. As Steve pointed out, you can use it to manage the MIDI ports as they appear in Ableton Live or Components, with additional routes in Bome Network.