Assuming you have established the connection between your computer and the Internet, let’s look at some basic router configuration which will come in handy from time to time.
Configuring SOHO routers
With most of SOHO routers you are required to configure from very little to none configuration straight away. In case, for some reason such as a complex network and nodes, you may need to adjust and tweak based on the preference. Almost all of these routers have some sort of web application which you access via your browser by typing in the router’s default IP address. This address may vary so make sure to catch up with your routers documentation or any other source.
After typing in the right IP address you will be landing in a page where you are required to put in your user name and password for authorization. The user name and password comes in with the router as well. This also varies but typically you may find it on the back of the router or in the manual. If not then look up online or contact people where you purchased the router. If you put in the right input, you will be authorized to proceed to the next page where all of the router configuration lies.
This configuration home page will also vary a lot from manufacture to manufactures and their make and models.
A lot of these networking devices are designed for the residence like space which uses a feature called universal plug and play (UPnP). Which seeks out and connect to other UPnP devices. This feature enables interconnectivity with the cost of some lower security.
Changing your user name and password
Whether it is SOHO or just your home, the very first thing you want to do is to change your routers default User Name and Password.
This the least security step you need to take right away. This is even way more crucial if you are broadcasting your signal. Leaving the user name and password to default meaning keeping your doors shut with the key hidden under the door mat. Changing your user name and password is as simple as just going to the right place from the list of option you will have and changing them. That is it.
Setting Static IP address
In most of the cases, when you first plug in the router’s Internet connection, it typically uses a DHCP like any other computer. This means, your IP address will change from time to time. While it may sound all so cool probably, this come in with a pitfall. This generally not supposed to affect anyone, but for some home or business users it can be a problem. You can easily solve this by ordering a static IP from your ISP which may charge you couple of extra bucks. Once you have got them, you just manually type in the address and save it or apply it however the confirmation procedure your router offers.
Updating your firmware
All of the routers come in with software just like any other computing devices. Almost every software invariably has some sort of bugs, vulnerabilities and other bunch of issue which are addressed over time by some developers constantly working their bum off to get the best to you. These best stuff come in as updates. In manufacturer’s term, this is called a “Firmware Updates” and they make them available on the router’s configuration page or via their official website. Note that routers provided by your ISP may have an automatic updating system.
A word of caution is be very careful when updating your router’s firmware. One useless update can leave your router as a useless box sitting there. To avoid such loss, always read the instructions carefully from the manual or in their website.