Tip & How-To about Computers & Internet
This tip assumes that you have a working internet connection and you are able to get online.
Wired routers: Wired routers can have any number of Local Area Network (LAN) ports and one Wide Area Network (WAN) port. They usually are labeled that way, although the WAN port may say Internet. Whatever it says, your internet connection will go from your DSL or Cable modem to the WAN port. The computers on your network will each be hooked into their own LAN port. Don't worry too much about the length of the cable to hook up the computers. Ethernet cable can usually run up to 1500'.
In order to make your connection work there is no software involved. Just make the connection between the modem and the router and then the router to the computer. I would then recommend you power down the router, the modem, and the computer. First turn on the modem, then the router, then start the computer. For the normal computer that has not had a special network setup this should be all you need.
Wireless routers: These routers are set up for wired networks just the same as wired routers. This will take care of up to four computers. In order to set up the wireless capability, you will have to be connected to the router from your computer. Sometimes it's easy to use the setup CD that came with the device.
First be sure your router is connected to the modem and your computer is connected via ethernet cable to one of the LAN ports on the router. Put the CD in and let it run. It should take you through the setup, although it may prompt you to restart the modem.
If your network has been running and you wish to set up the router by hand, that is possible. First you need to determine the address (IP) of the router. You'll need it to "talk to" the router. The procedure listed below should work for most routers made for the consumer.
For Windows XP, use your mouse to click the START button and then the "RUN" menu option. When the white rectangle opens, type CMD and press ENTER. A black window will open up and you will see the blinking cursor. Type IPCONFIG and press ENTER.
You should see several IP addresses and maybe some more information. You can scroll up and down in that window. Look for the value of the Default Gateway. It should be something like 192.168.1.0. This is the address of your router.
For Windows Visa and Windows 7, the procedure is the same except the white rectangle where you type CMD will appear directly above the START button as soon as you click on it.
Once you have written down the gateway address, close the black window and open your web browser. In the address bar, where you usually type the address of a web page, put the router address. Note: Put the address only. No WWW or anything else. Once you put in the address and press ENTER, you should be looking at the logon screen for your router. You will most likely be asked for a username and password. What you enter depends on the make of router. For instance, a Linksys usually has no username and a password of "admin". A D-Link has a username of "admin" but no password. Netgear has a username of "admin" and a password of "password". You can refer to your documentation on the device or look it up on the manufacturer's site. You might be thinking of changing the username and password once you set up your wireless network--If I can tell what it is from here, so can many other people!
Once you have logged onto your router, you will follow the menu items that are either at the top or the left of your screen. The wireless setup is accessed from the wireless setup menu. You will most likely only have to set your network name (the SSID). This is the network you will see from your wireless device. You can accept the default, but anyone with a router like yours will have an SSID the same as yours. Confusing, it can be! You will also want to click on the wireless security tab and set up security for your connection. If you don't, your wireless connection will be "open" and anyone within range will be able to log onto your wireless network. Use WPA/TKIP. Your password or passphrase can be one or more
words. Remember what you set it to be. You will need to log onto your network with it when you are finished.
Remember to save each page you modify in the router setup screen. When you finish, shut down the router page, start your wireless computer, and tell it to look for a wireless connection. You should see your network name and when you click on it and choose "connect" in the window, you can type your password and you're in. Your computer will remember this connection and you should not have to re-enter the password next time you start your computer up.
Posted by Art... on
Feb 15, 2011 | Linksys Wireless-G Broadband Router
May 20, 2010 | Linksys Wireless-G Broadband Router
Sep 27, 2008 | Belkin Computers & Internet
Nov 18, 2007 | Computers & Internet
869 people viewed this tip
Usually answered in minutes!