Upgrading Your Deco Mesh Network

Used Products:

Upgrading Your Deco Mesh Network

How Many Units Can Be Added?


For Wi-Fi Backhaul Network:

All the Deco units are connected through the Wi-Fi backhaul connection. In this case, we recommend no more than 10 Deco units in the network to ensure Wi-Fi performance. Also, we recommend no more than three hops in the networks.

Note: A Hop is a trip that a data packet that is transferred from one Deco unit to another Deco unit.


For an Ethernet Backhaul Network:

All the Deco units are connected directly through Ethernet cables or a network switch. And all the Deco units will communicate through the Ethernet connection without the Wi-Fi Backhaul connection.

In this case, you can add as many Deco units to the network. 


For a Network Utilizing BOTH Wired and Wireless Backhauls:

Some Deco units are connected through Ethernet, while others are connected through Wi-Fi. In this case, we recommend no more than three consecutive Wi-Fi hops in the network.

FAQ Link: Adding an Additional Deco Device To Your Deco Mesh Network


Can Different Deco Models Work Together?


All of our TP-Link Deco Mesh Systems were created to Work Together; allowing users an easy and affordable avenue to upgrade their home networks to the newest technologies.

While all of our Deco Units work together, how they are set up will influence what features and security will be available to your network. As a result, some features that you are used to having may be moved or renamed when adding an upgraded unit to your network.

This compatibility between units makes it so that the TP-Link Deco Mesh Systems can be upgraded and expanded as needed.

Why Do Some Features Disappear or Become Different After Mixing Deco Models Together?

For example, if you have an existing Deco M5 network, then purchase a new Deco X90 unit and set the X90 as the main Deco of the existing Deco network, you will find that some features (such as Antivirus, Parental Control, and QoS) disappear in the Deco app, instead, there is a new function called HomeShield that includes Realtime Protection, Parental Control, and QoS.

This is because different Deco models may support different advanced features. In this case, Deco M5 supports HomeCare while Deco X90 supports HomeShield. Whether the Deco app displays HomeCare or HomeShield features, depends on which Deco model is set up as the main Deco.

You could refer to the articles below for more details about the HomeCare and HomeShield features.

HomeCare: https://www.tp-link.com/us/homecare/

HomeShield: https://www.tp-link.com/us/homeshield/

Which Deco Should Operate as the Main Unit for my Network?

Careful consideration should be made when choosing what Deco Unit should be the main router of your network, as this will determine what features and maximum speeds your network will be capable of. We recommend setting your most powerful unit as the main router since your network can be easily bottlenecked at this point. If you have a gigabit connection from your ISP, take care to choose a Deco with a Multi-Gig Port, such as the Deco XE75 Pro or Deco XE200. Multigig Connections provide noticeable improvements to both your Internet Connection and your Backhaul Methods. If you are using an ethernet backhaul, we recommend choosing a model with multiple gigabit ports available.


As wireless communication standards have expanded over time, so have the other features that accompany the standard. As a result, there are increases in speed and reliability seen when using a Wi-Fi 6 Router over a Wi-Fi 5 Router or a Wi-Fi 6e Router over Wi-Fi 6. For example, a Wi-Fi 6e Router will allow your network to take advantage of the newest advancements such as OFDMA and MU-MIMO technology, which serve to improve connectivity and performance when there are many devices active on a network.


How Should I Connect My Deco Units Together?

The Deco Mesh System is meant to be compatible with any needed network configurations or setups. TP-Link has released models that use Powerline Connections, Wireless, and Wired Backhauls for a mesh network.

Wireless Backhaul

    • The Wireless Backhaul allows your satellite Deco Node to extend your mesh coverage without needing to be wired into your network. The wireless backhaul feature is meant to help extend an otherwise strong network, into an area that is just beyond the reach of your existing network. Only specific models include this feature
    • If using a wireless backhaul, it is recommended that you choose a model that it either tri-band or advertises a designated wireless backhaul. Using a model that does not offer this feature will result in the network used for the backhaul being hidden from devices as a network that can be connected to. To use both bands for your client devices in this situation, you must use a Wired Backhaul.

Wired Backhaul

    • The Wired Backhaul option will always provide the best connection between Deco Nodes and will result in a faster and more stable network than if a wireless backhaul or powerline backhaul were used.
    • To take full advantage of a wired backhaul, make sure you have ethernet cables that can use the entire bandwidth between nodes. The newest Deco Systems are shipping with multiple 2.5 Gigabit Ports, and in the case of a select few models, even a 10 Gigabit Ethernet Port.
      • To take advantage of these speeds specific ethernet cables are needed, most housing developments use CAT5e, but newer developments may be starting to utilize the CAT6 Ethernet Standard:
        • CAT5E – 5Gbps
        • CAT6 – 10Gbps

Powerline Connection

    • In some cases, it may be necessary to find other methods of establishing connections between your Deco Units. Some of our Deco Units, such as the Deco P9, can connect to other units using a powerline connection. This works by transmitting a network connection over the existing power cabling and outlets in your home.


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