As more and more devices are able to connect to wireless networks, setting up a wireless router has become a critical step for virtually any home network. Setting up a wireless network will allow your devices to connect to the Internet anywhere in the house, without the need for a tangle of cables.
Part 1 of 3: connect the hardware
Step 1. Purchase a wireless router
Routers come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Compare the features to find the router that's right for you. If you need to cover more space, or if you have a lot of walls in your house, you will need a router with more antennas.
All modern routers should support 802.11n or Wireless-N. This is the most stable and fastest frequency and is backward compatible with older standards such as 802.11g
Step 2. Connect your router to your modem
Wireless routers allow you to share your broadband Internet connection with multiple devices. To do this, you will need to connect your broadband modem with the router. For best results, place your router next to your modem.
- Connect the router and modem with an Ethernet cable. Most routers come with a small Ethernet cable that you can use for this.
- Connect the modem to the WAN / Internet port on your router. It is usually highlighted and can be represented by a color (usually yellow).
Step 3. Connect all the peripherals you want by cable
If you have nearby computers or a video game console or TV, you can connect them to the router by Ethernet. This will result in a more stable and faster connection and will not require any additional configuration.
Step 4. Connect at least one computer via Ethernet
You will need at least one computer connected via an Ethernet cable in order to configure your router settings. You can then disconnect the computer if you want to connect wirelessly.
Part 2 of 3: Configure the router
Step 1. Find the router's IP address
Most newer routers have this printed on a label stuck to the router. Older models will have indicated this in the documentation. If you can't find the router's IP address anywhere, you can search the router model on the web to see what the default address is.
- IP addresses are presented as four groups of three digits, separated by periods.
- Most of the default IP addresses are 192.168.1.1. 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.2.1.
Step 2. Launch a web browser on the computer that is connected to the router
Enter the router's IP address in the address bar and press Enter. Your browser will try to connect to the router's configuration menu.
If your router came with an installation disc, you can run the setup program instead. It will perform a large part of these functions
Step 3. Enter your username and password
In order to access the configuration page, you will need to provide a valid username and password. Most routers have a basic account configured that you will need to use to log in. It varies from model to model, but it should be printed on the router or in the documentation.
- The most typical username is “admin”.
- The most common passwords are “admin” and “password”.
- Many routers will only ask for a username and password blank, and some will allow you to leave all fields blank.
- If you are unable to determine your username and password, search for your router model online to see what the default username is. If it has been changed, press the reset button on the back of the router for 10 seconds to restore the factory default settings.
Step 4. View the wireless settings
When you log into your router, you will be taken to the router's main menu or the system status screen. There will be several options to choose from. The Internet section can usually keep its default settings, unless you have received specific instructions from your Internet service provider. The Wireless section will allow you to configure your wireless network.
Step 5. Enter a name for your wireless network
In the section Wireless, you should see a field called SSID Where name. Enter a unique name for your wireless network. This is what other devices will see when they search for a network.
Check the box to enable SSID transmission. This will essentially activate the wireless network
Step 6. Choose a security method
Choose from the list of available security options. For optimal security, choose WPA2-PSK as an encryption method. This is the hardest security to break and it will give you the best protection against hackers and intruders.
Step 7. Create a passphrase
Once you have chosen your security method, enter a passphrase for the network. It should be a tough password, with a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Do not use passwords that could be easily deduced from your network name or from personal information.
Step 8. Save your settings
When you are done giving a name and securing your wireless network, click the button. To apply Where Save. The changes will be applied to your router, which may take a few moments. Once the router has finished resetting, your wireless network will be activated.
Step 9. Change your router's username and password
Once your network is set up, you should change the username and password you used to access your router. This will help you protect your router from unauthorized modification. You can change these options from the Administration section of the router configuration menu.
Step 10. Block sites
If you want to prevent access to certain websites from devices that are connected to your network, you can use the built-in blocking tools to restrict access. These can be found in the Router Security / Blocking section.
You can usually block by specific domain name or by keywords
Part 3 of 3: connect the peripherals
Step 1. Connect a computer, tablet or smartphone to the network
Scan for wireless network. On all devices that support a wireless network, you should see your new network as long as you are within range of the router. Select it and you will be prompted to enter a passphrase.
Step 2. Enter your wireless passphrase
Once you provide the passphrase, your device will automatically be connected to the wireless network. The network will be stored in your device's memory and it will automatically connect whenever you are in range.
For detailed instructions on selecting and connecting to a wireless network for your specific computer, tablet, or smartphone, follow this guide
Step 3. Connect your other devices
In addition to other computers and tablets, you can connect other peripherals, such as printers, game consoles, TVs, and more. Consult guides for specific instructions for your device.
- How to install a wireless printer.
- Connect a PlayStation 3 to a wireless network.
- How to connect an Xbox One to a wireless network.
- How to connect a Nintendo Wii console to a wireless network.
- How to connect an Apple TV to a wireless network.