Step 0: Do you have a Wired home network?In case you don’t have a WiFi set up already at home, your internet connectivity depends on the wired connection between a modem and your PC. Even if you do have an older WiFi router being used, it is accessing the internet via a modem, either in your home or a common unit provided by the ISP.
Step 1: Select the right routerSince the router is now the heart of a modern home, make sure you pick the right one for your needs. Your choice will depend on the number of devices you intend to connect, the size of your home and the kind of usage you’re expecting. For larger homes, mesh routers can be a good choice.
Step 2: Getting things connectedMost routers should come with a manual that explains the basic setup. However, the common steps should follow this sequence:
- Plug in the new modem and power it on.
- Connect the modem to the router via LAN cable (In case your modem is a common ISP unit situated outside your home, use the connection cable that comes into your home).
- Connect your PC to the router via LAN cable as well.
Step 3: Managing the configurationWhile some would be ready to connect at this stage, most routers and connections will require additional configuration. To do that, first check the default IP address that your router ships with – for most routers it will be something like https://192.168.0.1. If you enter this into any browser, you should be able to access the management console which can be logged into after providing the default ID and password that your router ships with.
Step 4: Change password and updateAt this stage, you should change the default password that you just used, to protect your router against external tampering. Also go through with any pending firmware update for the router if available. Both should be easily accessible via the management console that you’re now using.
Step 5: Set up your wireless home networkThis is where things get specific, so it will be a good idea to get in touch with your ISP to proceed further. Some can get you up and running by just entering a connection ID and password, some will require you to manually configure further values like IP address, subnet mask etc. If you’ve gone with a mesh router, you might have to set the other units on the network simultaneously. After this, just configure the WiFi in the wireless setup section to set your own WiFi name and password.
This is just the beginningWhile you are already up and running, most routers come with a host of features that you can configure to optimise your experience. Explore these features to get even more out of your home router.
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