Tips for Securing Your Home Router
Seemingly minor and easily overlooked settings can still have profound security implications. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your wired or wireless home router — and by extension, your network — is as secure as possible.
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Microsoft Windows Home Server
If you have a home network, you'll welcome the easy file sharing, remote access and the image-based backup features of Windows Home Server.
MikroTik's The Dude
This free tool delivers many of the same capabilities that you'd find in pricey network monitoring tools. As long as you don't mind tinkering, The Dude is a decent network utility that should be worth the download.
So you've been looking at those wireless or phoneline cards
and thinking about getting one to connect a computer into your Ethernet
network. But you've read the information on this
page about Mixed Media networks and know that you're going to
need something to make the different networks play together.
Well, you've come to the right place! This article will show you
how to make your own Mixed Media Router (MMR), which will be capable
of supporting both File and Printer sharing and Internet sharing among
all the computers on your LAN. The MMR can support networks with
Ethernet, HomePNA phoneline and wireless pieces,
and even support all three types at once!
The cost of this project is about $100, plus the cost of the Network
adapters for the types of networks that you want to connect together.
You'll also need a Pentium class computer with at least 64MB of memory
and at least 10MB of free disk space, running Win95, 98 or NT 4.
This can be the computer that you're currently using to share the Internet.
a Mixed Media Router?
The diagram below illustrates a simple example of a Mixed
Media network. This network has only 3 computers:
one with a Wireless network adapter;
one with an Ethernet network adapter; and
one with both Wireless and Ethernet adapters.
It could just have well had Ethernet and HomePNA, HomePNA and Wireless,
or all three! (If you'd like to look at more Mixed networking examples,
Vicomsoft has an informative
article on Wireless networking. It explains the issues of
combining multiple network types and illustrates a number of network configurations.)
The computer that has both adapters also has an Internet connection.
This connection can be via Dialup modem, cable modem, DSL, ISDN or any
other method to connect to the Internet. This well-connected computer
will be used as the MMR.
The Mixed Media Router manages the data flow among the three networks
that use different connection media, so that a single Internet connection
will be shared among the computers in all the subnetworks, and File
and Printer sharing will work.
do I want to make one?
There are off-the-shelf products that you can buy to do
what the MMR does. Why would you want to spend $100+ to make your
You can't always get what you
The simplest reason for making your own is that you can't buy a product
that meets your need. Not every manufacturer makes a Bridge
/ Gateway / Router for their product (go
here for an explanation of the difference between these alternatives).
This is especially a problem for Wireless products, which still don't
allow you to mix products from different manufacturers.
In other cases, the products are announced, but not out yet!
Or maybe you're a really creative networker and have a LAN
with Ethernet, Wireless and HomePNA nodes! Can't buy
anything to solve that problem, unfortunately.
Off-the-Shelf is too expensive A Symphony Cordless Ethernet Bridge will set you back
about $350-$400 depending on where you get it. Making your own can
cost as low as about $250 (including the cost of a PCI interface card).
Other wireless bridges (or "Access points") are similarly
do I have to do?
To get the MMR up and running, you'll need to follow these