How to Setup and Secure a LinkSys Router

by Aeyne Schriber on July 23, 2011 in Router

A LinkSys router is a device that is used to create an Internet connection for multiple devices that are connected to a network.  The network is typically a Local Area Network or LAN and can be located in your home or in a business. LinkSys is a primary brand of router that is offered in several different models to accommodate a wireless configuration, DSL, or cable connection for Internet access.

If you have never used a LinkSys router or you are looking for tips on how to secure your existing router the information we provide here should help you with what you are looking for.

LinkSys Router Setup

For users who are implementing a LinkSys router for the first time, it may help you to know that setting up the router is a fairly simple process and can be accomplished by inexperienced users.  A router setup requires very little equipment to establish a network and Internet connection.  It is important to note that you can use the router to simply connect computers to a network so they can communicate and share files or you can use the router to establish connectivity to the Internet.  That said here are a few tips on setting up a LinkSys router:

  • Unpack the Router:  Once you have chosen the type of router you want to use unpack the router from the box.  Regardless if you choose a wireless router or a router that establishes a DSL or cable connection, the setup process is basically the same across the board.
  • Connect the Ethernet Cables:  The Ethernet cables are the blue cables that contain a connection on either end similar to the end connection that plugs into a phone jack.  Connect the Ethernet cable which is connected to your broadband modem into the Internet connection port located on the back of the LinkSys router.  Take the second Ethernet cable and connect it to one of the other ports that are available on the back of the router and then plug the other end of the cable into your PC’s Ethernet port.  Plug the router into an AC outlet in the wall.
  • Configure the Router:  Once you have everything set up and connected it is necessary to go online to configure the router.  You can do this by opening your browser and typing in the URL address that is included in the instructions that come with your router.  The URL typically looks like this:  http://192.168.1.1. Once you enter the URL press the Enter key on your keyboard.

After you press the Enter key you will be presented with a window that prompts you for your user name and password.  All you need is the password that is included in the instructions for the LinkSys router.  The password will allow you to access a dashboard that contains numerous settings.

If you are not sure what most of the settings are for you can enlist the help of someone who does.  Regardless, the router settings are set on default which means your router will work immediately without having to input numerous settings.  The configuration settings are there to customize your preferences and to secure the connection if you are setting up wireless connectivity.

Setting a Password for a LinkSys Router

If the reason you are implementing a LinkSys router is to establish wireless connectivity and you live in an area where there are other people nearby, it is possible for others to piggyback on your Internet connection.  For this reason, it is wise to password protect your connection to prevent unauthorized access and increase your security online.  Even if you trust the people around you there may be others that will try to intrude on your Internet connection.

  • Access the URL:  Open up your browser on your PC and type in the URL address you use to access the settings console.  The URL is usually http://192.168.1.1.  Once you enter the URL, press the Enter key and enter your user name and password when prompted.
  • Administration:  Once you enter your user name and password this provides you with access to the administration console.  Click on the Wireless tab and then choose Wireless Security. Select WEP (Wireless Encryption Protocol) under Security Mode and then choose 128 bits hex digits and enter the password that you want to use next to Passphrase.  Click on Generate and then store your password in a safe location.  Save the settings to save your password and then close the window.  It is only necessary to do this process once until you decide to change your settings again.

Changing an SSID for Enhanced Security

Every router including a LinkSys router contains an SSID number which is an identification number for a Local Area Network which is located in a residence or a business.  An SSID is used to provide added security for a wireless router and network and is also commonly referred to as a Service Set Identifier which is the technical term for a network name.

The SSID is set by default on your router by the LinkSys manufacturer which is Cisco Systems.  This number acts as an identifier for your network and by changing the number it hides your SSID and prevents other users from finding your network.

The process for changing the SSID from the default is easy to accomplish, even for the novice user. You can access this function by opening your web browser and typing the URL address for the router provided in the user’s manual.  The URL address is usually http://192.168.1.1 however you should check the user’s manual to be certain.

Once you type in the URL you will be prompted for your user name and password and once you enter it you will be presented with the administrator console.  Click on Wireless and then look for the SSID under Wireless Network Mode.  This should display your SSID number.  Near this setting you should see a setting listed for SSID broadcast or something identical to this term.  Click on Disable or depending on the program you are using, the setting may require you to ‘untick’ the box next to Enable SSID.  Click on Save and then close the window.

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