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Learn the steps to configure a wireless router

Do you want to configure your wireless router and do not know where to start? You are not alone! In this guide we will explain all the necessary steps to configure a router, taking advantage of clarifying some things. Because the truth is that the variety of cables, ports and other components leaves most people scratching their heads.

To make things more complicated, each router is different, and the specific steps to configure it depend on each model. This guide applies to most routers in the current market, although it can also help you if you are trying to configure a used router.

Quick note: This tutorial assumes that you are configuring a wireless router to function as the main one in your home. Let's assume that you already have a modem, either cable, fiber or DSL, which is configured and works correctly. Finally, let's assume that you have a laptop with an Ethernet port, or that you are configuring a wireless router with a desktop computer. With these warnings in mind, let's start!

Step 1: connect your router to your modem

Do not connect your router to the power outlet yet. Instead, the first thing you are going to do is connect your modem to the WAN port, with an Ethernet cable.

steps to configure a routerBill Roberson / Digital Trends

Not sure what the WAN port is? Most non-enterprise routers have a group of Ethernet ports, several of which are called LAN ports (local area network) and another called WAN port (wide area network). English). The WAN port looks the same as LAN ports, but it often has a different color and is separate from them.

In the photo above, for example, the WAN port is yellow and is labeled "Internet." Sometimes labeled as "WAN." This port is intended to connect your router to the modem and the outside world from there. LAN ports are designed to connect to local devices such as your computer or TV.

Connect an Ethernet cable to your modem and the other end to the WAN port of your router. Then, connect your router's power adapter to the wall.

Step 2: download the application and contact

steps to configure a router

Give your router a minute to start and create a network. Meanwhile (if there is another connection option available), download the application associated with the manufacturer of your modem. Typically, today's modems can be configured using a mobile application that automatically guides you through the configuration process. It is the most effective method, but you must make sure you choose the correct application.

Linksys has its own configuration and administration application. Netgear uses the Nighthawk application. Google has its own configuration application. Instructions on what application to use should be in your manual.

steps to configure a router

Now connect to your wifi network. This is usually a simple process: go to the configuration of your phone or computer, and choose the Wi-Fi / Network option (Google simply makes you scan a QR code, so this process can vary a bit).

Find your router's name here: your router must have a default SSID name printed on the back, along with the default network key. Use the key to log in to the network.

Once connected, start the router administration application to begin the configuration.

Alternative method: If your router does not have an application, connect a computer manually to the router with an Ethernet cable. Once connected, go to the configuration page. This is basically a website hosted on your device, and is a traditional way to configure settings.

The way to find it may vary, but it almost always means typing 192.168.1.1 in the address bar of your preferred browser and then pressing Enter.

steps to configure a router

If you find a page, go ahead and jump to the next step. However, if that address does not work, your router can use a completely different address. This may vary, therefore, check your router's official documentation if the 192.168.1.1 address does not work.

Alternatively, you can check our list of default router IP addresses and addresses.

Step 3: Create a username and password, or find the existing one

steps to configure a router

Your router application should automatically guide you through the configuration procedures, therefore, answer your questions and complete the forms as necessary. For most new routers, you will be asked to create an application name (again, this is called SSID) and a password. Make sure this password is unique and secure, since anyone who has it can do all kinds of unpleasant things on your network.

WPA2 encryption is currently the security standard and you should always choose it if you have an option for your security protocol. Be sure to also choose a long password, which is different from the administrator password you set earlier and ideally does not include dictionary words or an easy-to-guess name (such as your pet's name). Then gurdalo in a safe place.

However, a used router may already have a password and must be reset. Most routers have a reset button embedded in the back. Press and hold the "reset" button with a clip for at least 30 seconds to do the trick.

Leave the power on and wait for the router to reset. You should use the default settings when it restarts, which means that the default username and password will now grant you access to the settings.

Step 4: Continue configuring your router

steps to configure a router

The router application should also allow you to configure other settings such as parental controls, automatic updates and more. You can adjust this setting and more from the application, but pay attention to the tutorial and everything that shows you.

You should learn about guest access, monitoring activity and more. When finished, the application will do the network configuration and finish configuring your network. Now you can explore the application in your spare time to get more information.

Optional: mesh router configuration

steps to configure a router

A growing number of routers are “mesh routers” these days, such as Google’s Wifi router. Mesh routers use a group of Wifi devices that work together, usually two or three of them. A device connects to your modem and acts like a traditional router.

The other devices act more like automatic repeaters that connect to the first device and provide a secondary source for the signal. This can greatly extend the reach of the router and allow users to get rid of dead zones or ensure that a particularly large house or property has full coverage.

This also means that you should go one step further and place the secondary devices in your home. Here are some tips to help you place the mesh routers the right way:

  • Try to configure additional routers in open spaces where they can transmit the network as freely as possible. Remember, you don't have to be connected to the modem with these access points! However, routers will need access to a power outlet.
  • Set additional router points removed, but not far away. All routers need to work together. On average, it takes a distance of about two rooms away from the original router.
  • You can also choose to place your access points in particularly important areas of your home. For example, if you have a game space where you use Wi-Fi, you may want to make sure that one of the satellite models is placed there for maximum effect.
  • You can usually easily connect additional routers to the router application on your phone (Google, for example, you simply have to bring your phone closer to the router to add it). You must connect them to expand your network, so don't forget this part.

And that's it!

With these steps, your router must be ready to use. Start connecting your devices and enjoy!

Of course, there is much more you can configure, if you go deeper into the configuration. The port forwarding configuration can be useful, and true advanced users should consider replacing their firmware with DD-WRT to gain access to all types of configurations that would not otherwise be offered. However, for most users, working with Wi-Fi and secure access to administrative settings is a great place to start.

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