UniFi Network - Remote Adoption (Layer 3)

Layer 3 adoption is the process of adopting a UniFi device to a remote UniFi Network Application. This is only recommended for advanced users, or those adopting devices when using Official UniFi Hosting.

Note: Refer to Device Adoption if you are unsure whether you require remote adoption.

Requirements

The UniFi device and the UniFi Network Application must have unrestricted connectivity over TCP Port 8080.

Methods

Mobile App (Existing Networks)

The UniFi Mobile App (iOS / Android) can streamline adoption if your network is already broadcasting WiFi on the same VLAN as the unadopted UniFi device.

  1. Ensure the device has a solid white LED indicating it is in a factory default state.
  2. Connect your mobile device to WiFi associated with the same VLAN as the unadopted device. If this isn't possible, refer to the SSH method below.
  3. Open your UniFi Network Mobile App and connect to site you want to adopt your device.
  4. Your device should appear for adoption in the device list.

SSH (New Networks)

If WiFi is not available, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure your device is in a factory default state.
  2. Connect a laptop directly to the network using a wired connection.
  3. SSH into the device.
  4. Issue the following command:
    set-inform http://ip-of-host:8080/inform
  5. Visit the UniFi Site Manager or UniFi Mobile App and click on the device appearing as "ready to adopt."

Note: If you are using Official UniFi Hosting, you can visit your UniFi Network dashboard and click Copy Inform URL to paste into the command above.

Other (Advanced)

DHCP Option 43

This option leverages your DHCP server to inform your UniFi device of the location of the machine running the Network Application remotely. Those with a UniFi Gateway can easily accomplish this by entering the IP address of the remote Network Application in Option 43 Application Host Address field located in the Network Settings.

For those using a third-party gateway or DHCP server, we recommend consulting your manufacturer’s documentation to learn more.

DNS

You'll need to configure your DNS server to resolve unifi to your remote UniFi Network Application.

There are two methods of specifying the machine running the Network Application:

Troubleshooting

If you are experiencing difficulty, then your UniFi device and UniFi Network application likely cannot communicate over TCP Port 8080. This must be addressed differently depending on the location of your UniFi Network Application:

  • If the UniFi application and unadopted device are on separate VLANs behind the same local gateway, ensure inter-VLAN routing is enabled and TCP Port 8080 is not blocked on the firewall.
  • If you are using Official UniFi Hosting or your UniFi Console has a public IP address, ensure your local firewall/gateway allows your unadopted UniFi device to communicate with it over TCP Port 8080.
  • If the UniFi Network Application (often running on a Cloud Key) is running behind a remote gateway and the gateway has a public IP address, then you must Port Forward TCP 8080 from the gateway to the IP address associated with the Cloud Key.
  • If the UniFi Network Application (often running on a Cloud Key) is running behind a remote gateway, but the gateway has a private IP address (it is double NAT'd), this will not work. Contact your ISP for assistance.
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