Performance of two microbial fuel cells (MFCs) was investigated under batch and continuous mode of operation using different cathodic electrolyte. The wastewater was supplied from the bottom port provided to the anode chamber in both the MFCs and the effluent left the anode chamber from the top port in MFC-1, whereas in MFC-2, the effluent exit was provided close to membrane. Stainless steel (SS) mesh anode was used in both the MFCs with surface area of 167 and 100 cm(2) in MFC-1 and MFC-2, respectively. Under batch mode and continuous mode of operation, these MFCs gave chemical oxygen demand removal efficiency more than 85% and about 68%, respectively. Under batch mode of operation, maximum power density of 39.95 and 56.87 mW/m(2) and maximum current density of 180.83 and 295 mA/m(2) were obtained in MFC-1 and MFC-2, respectively. Under continuous mode of operation, a reduction in power and current density was observed. Even with less surface area of the anode, MFC-2 produced more current (1.77 mA) than MFC-1 (1.40 mA). Among the cathodic electrolyte tested, these can be listed in decreasing order of power density as aerated KMnO(4) solution > KMnO(4) solution without aeration > aerated tap water > aerated tap water with NaCl.