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Monday, December 13, 2010

Networking 101

This week, we are going to focus on networking - specifically setting up your own home network and troubleshooting hardware issues.

Today, we are going to provide some frequently asked questions and solutions for setting up your router:

Q: How can I protect my router from unauthorized wireless access?
A: Wireless routers can be secured from unauthorized access and hackers by adding a wireless security key or encryption key. For more information, see the manual included with the router either in paper form or on the setup disc.

Q: Which wireless security type is the most secure?
A: WPA2 is the most secure wireless network encryption type. For additional security, use a password of at least ten characters with mixed letters, numbers and special characters.

Q: What is WiFi Protected Setup (WPS)?
A: WiFi Protected Setup or WPS is a system that allows the wireless networking function of the router to be set up without physical connection using a PIN.

Q: What is the difference between a Router and a Switch?

A: First, a router can also provide wireless network access. The purpose of a router is to join the WAN (Wide Area Network, or The Internet) with your LAN (Local Area/Home Network) for the purpose of Internet connection sharing, as well as local file sharing. A switch allows one computer to access the Internet and other machines must connect to the Internet through that machine.

Q: How can my router be reset to its factory settings?
A: There is a reset button on the back of the router in pin-hole labeled Reset. While the router is on, press this reset button for 30 seconds, then reset the router by unplugging the power and it will be back at factory settings.

Q: Does my router have a built-in firewall?
A: Yes, by default a router will not allow incoming connections unless specified by a local program or port forward setup.

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