Setting up a WiFi Bridge with a FortiAP


In this example you will set up a WiFi network with a FortiGate managing a FortiAP in Bridge mode.

You can configure a FortiAP unit in either Tunnel or Bridge mode. When a FortiAP is in Bridge mode, the Ethernet and WiFi interfaces are connected (or bridged), allowing wired and wireless networks to be on the same subnet. Tunnel mode is the default mode for a FortiAP. A FortiAP in Tunnel mode uses a wireless-only subnet for wireless traffic.

For information about using a FortiAP in Tunnel mode, see Setting up WiFi with a FortiAP.

Find this recipe for other FortiOS versions
5.2 | 5.4 | 5.6

1. Connecting and authorizing the FortiAP unit

Connect the FortiAP to the lan interface.

Go to WiFi & Switch Controller > Managed FortiAPs. The FortiAP is listed. The device is not yet authorized, as indicated by the  in the State column.

By default, the FortiGate adds newly discovered FortiAPs to the Managed FortiAPs list but does not authorize them.

FortiAP discovered but not yet authorized

Highlight the FortiAP unit on the list and select Authorize.

After a few minutes, hit the Refresh button and  will appear to tell you that the device is authorized.

2. Creating an SSID

Go to WiFi & Switch Controller > SSID and create a new SSID.

Set Traffic Mode to Local bridge with FortiAP’s Interface.

Configure the WiFi Settings as you would for a regular wireless network and set a secure Pre-shared Key.

Create a new SSID

3. Creating a custom FortiAP profile

Go to WiFi & Switch Controller > FortiAP Profiles and create a new profile.

Set Platform to the FortiAP model you are using (FAP11C).

Set SSID to use the new SSID. Set LAN Port mode to bridge to the new SSID.

Create a new FortiAP profile

Go to WiFi & Switch Controller > Managed FortiAPs and edit the FortiAP. Set FortiAP Profile to the new profile.

You have the option to enter a name for the FortiAP (MyFortiAP in this example). If you don’t, the FortiAP will be identified by its serial number.

Customize the FortiAP profile

4. Results

Connect to the SSID with a wireless device. After a connection is established, you can browse the Internet using the wireless network configured in this recipe. 

Wireless device on newly created WiFi

Go to FortiView > All Sessions and observe the wireless activity. Hover over the Device column to see details.

Showing wireless device on the network


For further reading, check out Deploying Wireless Networks in the FortiOS 5.4 Handbook.

Fortinet Technical Documentation

Contact Fortinet Technical Documentation at
Fortinet Technical Documentation

Latest posts by Fortinet Technical Documentation (see all)

It may take a few minutes for the FortiAP to appear.
You can disable this in the CLI. See Deploying Wireless Networks.