Converting your wireless router into an access point


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    There is a significant distinction between a wireless access point and a wireless router. Access points merely extend the ResNet network to wireless devices. Routers, on the other hand, distribute private IP addresses and can disrupt service to other students. Devices that perform routing are not permitted on the ResNet network.

    "What if I already own a wireless router"?

    Fortunately, many wireless routers can easily be turned into a simple access point. If your router is similar to the one pictured below, it has a single WAN port (1) and multiple LAN ports (2). To turn your router into a simple access point, plug the network cable from the wall jack in your room into any of the router's LAN ports (2). Don't plug anything into the WAN port (1). This allows you to bypass the routing capability of your wireless router while extending the ResNet network to your wireless device(s).

    Security considerations

    When setting up any wireless access point or router, we recommend you modify/enable the following security options (at a minimum):

    • Change the default administrator password for configuring the router
    • Change the default wireless network name (SSID) to something unique - You may want to use your room number, nickname, or some other personal moniker. Be sure to use a non-offensive name because the SSID is broadcast to all surrounding wireless devices.
    • Enable encryption (security) - We recommend using WPA/WPA2. This requires you to enter a passphrase (8-64 characters in length). The passphrase you enter will be required by anyone who wishes to use your router to gain access to the campus network and Internet, so it should be something not easily guessed.


    If you've plugged your network cable from the wall jack in your room to one of the LAN ports on your wireless router but are still unable to connect to the network, you may need to adjust the settings on your router to gets its IP address dynamically (via DHCP) from the ISP (i.e. ResNet). The router won't work if it has a hard-coded, static IP address.


    Please keep in mind that although the instructions listed on this page work for many routers, they may not work for your particular router. If you are considering purchasing a device to provide wireless network access in your room, we strongly recommend purchasing a wireless access point (WAP).