ASUS RT-AC88U WiFi and AirPrint wireless printer problem solution

The ASUS RT-AC88U is a pretty awesome router. However, out of the box, it’s a bit finicky if you try to print to it via WiFi or Apple’s AirPrint. It doesn’t seem to want to maintain the connection. I stumbled across this somewhat cryptic post and the suggested changes have solved my issues–at least so far. Here are the steps with a little more detail:

1. First log into the router’s settings.

2. Choose Wireless > Professional tab

3. Make the following changes:

-Modulation Scheme: Up to MCS 9 (802.11ac)
-Airtime Fairness: Disable (NOTE: According to one reader, this is the only change that matters, so try this first. Thanks Dan CC!)
-Multi-User MIMO: Disable (Note that this was already disabled by default for me)
-Explicit Beamforming: Disable
-Universal Beamforming (5 GHz only): Disable

Click Apply button.

4. Each of the Bands (i.e., 2.4GHz and 5GHz) have their own independent set of settings on this page. So, change the Band and repeat Step 3.

5. Finally, change the Control Channel to a specific channel (i.e., something other than Auto). Again, apply the change for one band, change the Band setting, and apply the change for the other band. (NOTE: as hellojohnbuck points out in the comments, printers generally only use 2.4GHz, so you probably only need to change for that band.)


I’m not sure what real-world impact changing these settings has on the router’s performance; however, I haven’t really noticed any significant difference…other than my printer works wireless now ;-)


Matt S commented below that he disabled a new setting, “Target Wake Time” (Wifi > General), that was causing his printer connection to timeout.

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Comments 206

  • Another shout out to a brilliant solution. I recently made the plunge to a [email protected]#s router and while the wired devices worked well, I couldn’t get my Canon MX922 or my Brother HL-L2360DW wireless printers to connect or even install. Your Blog saved me many more hours of hair pulling ( I don’t have much to spare as it is :) ). I can’t understand why ASUS Customer “Service” doesn’t even know about this setting! Shame on them. There can’t only be 40+ people who have had this issue! Thanks again.

  • Thank you very much for taking the time to post this fix!! I cannot tell you how long I have spent trying to get my Brother MFC-L2720DW printer to work on a new Asus RT-AC3100. I followed your instructions, and I can now use my printer. We cannot thank people like you enough for posting a solution to an issue that benefits everyone. Thank you!

  • Thank you so much! I spent 2 hours on the phone with Cannon and another hour on the phone with Asus yesterday and nothing solved the problem.

    I am not sure why this works or why they have the setting in the first place but I went to each channel (2.4, 5-1, 5-2) and turned off “airtime fairness” and it works perfectly. I now see my Canon and HP printers from all devices over the wireless network.

    Great job and thank you so much for posting these tips!

  • Are you changing these settings on the app or???? Sorry. Rookie here.

  • Another vote for disabling “Airtime Fairness” – suddenly I can print and scan reliably again!!

  • Changed only the Airtime Fairness to Disable. It worked great. I can now see the printer on the network and the printer stays connected. ASUS RT-AC88U. Thank you very much for this fix!

  • Worked, and our HP LJ Pro 400 MFP (M425dn) – is once again visible. So is my Yamaha AVR TSR-7810. Too many tweeks available in the router. A “Default” reset button should be added to the “Professional” tab. Its elsewhere, and this probably would have done the trick as well.

    • Amazing that the default settings cause such problems, right? Oh well, glad it got you running William. Take care.

  • This worked for me. Was having problems with 2 HP laserJet printers. Spen about 8 hours on this thinking it was the printer. Note – my router has same model number but different setting, likely due to firmware update. However, changing all settings you mentioned here where you can find the for 2/5G seemed to do the trick Thank you!!!

  • I was having the same problem with my HP Printers and an RT-AC3100. The Airtime Fairness worked for a newly imaged Window 7 machine but my every day Windows 10 machine now sees the printers but still won’t install them. I then tried all of the setting listed and still no good. I have tried following an HP Installation Failure Guide and the HP Print and Scan Doctor but neither helped. Not sure what else to try. I guess I will have to try calling HP Support and if they can’t help Asus Support.

  • Thank you so much! Turning off Airtime Fairness on the 2.4Ghz channel worked for me! I had been struggling against this for quite some time, trying IP reservations and static IP addresses, etc. Nice to have it finally work consistently.

  • I had the same problem with my ASUS RT-AC5300 (brother airprint printer visible on old router but not the new one). Applied all these settings on all the bands, and now we can see the airprint printer. Thanks! (I did not change the control channel).

  • “Fail due to WPS message exchange error!” I keep getting that same error after 4-5 hours of messing with everything. I tried your settings but they didn’t work.

    The HP DeskJet 3755 was working just fine with my old ASUS router. I then upgraded to the RT-AC88U and haven’t been able to get it connected. The router works great for everything else.

  • Hi All. I followed these instructions and it worked. Then I backed off the changes and it turned out that -Airtime Fairness: Disable was the only one that mattered.

  • Have you tried undoing one change at a time to narrow which actually solved the problem? Airtime Fairness seems like something we’d want to keep enabled if possible. Same is true for beamforming and MU-MIMO.

  • Thank You!!!! Worked on my ASUS AC-5300 and solved my Epson ET-2650 and Honeywell RTH-9580 connection issues.

  • I have been fighting with my printer for a week, this appears to have fixed it. THANK YOU.

    • You are quite welcome

    • By the way my printer is a brother hl2270dw, it also allowed my retropie to work on wifi again, and I think my Honey well thermostat. I think it may all come down to the airtime fairness, did you ever try just disabling it? I will try changing everything back but that tomorrow.

      • Nope. Haven’t messed with it since changing since it seemed to have no impact other than to make things work :-)

  • Thanks for pulling together this very helpful information – I’ve spend waay too many hours troubleshooting my wireless printer issues. I only updated the 2.4Ghz band because that’s what my printers use and it appears to be working. My router is the ASUS RT-AC5300 and my printers are a HP OfficeJet Pro 8710 and a Canon Pixma TS5120. As a bonus, this config change appears to have fixed the issues I was having with a TP Link wifi extender as well! Thanks again.

  • I just wanted to say thank you for posting this! After numerous hours of tinkering and head scratching, I can now use my MX922 wirelessly! I had a feeling it was something to do with the ASUS RT-AC88U router I got about 6 months ago as it worked fine with an old Linksys router! Funny thing is, the first AC88U I had, had to be returned as it died, when I got the replacement, my MX922 miraculously started to work wirelessly again! And just recently I updated the firmware on the router and this issue came back to haunt me! Thankfully I found your post….it helped 100%! Sure wish I knew exactly what changes these settings make, anyway, thanks again!

  • Thank-You for your troubleshooting and for posting this article. I ran into the same issue with a newly installed ASUS RT-AC86U router (which replaced a NetGear Router) and a couple of Canon printers (ip8720 and MX922). This also fixed the issue where my Honeywell Wi-Fi thermostat could only connect to my guest network on this router. The Guest 2.4 network must have different settings than the regular 2.4 network.
    In my case I did not need to change the Control Chanel. It was left at Auto.

  • This worked for me on my ASUS, RT-AC5300, except control channel wouldn’t allow me to take it off of auto. Can you dig in a little deeper on why this works?

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