Like every other website on the planet, SmallNetBuilder uses cookies. Our cookies track login status, but we only allow admins to log in anyway, so those don't apply to you. Any other cookies you pick up during your visit come from advertisers, which we don't control.
If you continue to use the site, you agree to tolerate our use of cookies. Thank you!

Router Charts

Click for Router Charts

Router Ranker

Click for Router Ranker

NAS Charts

Click for NAS Charts

NAS Ranker

Click for NAS Ranker

More Tools

Click for More Tools

LAN & WAN How To

Setting Up

Figure 1 shows the basic network configuration, which is based on the setup I used for my community center project. It uses three routers - one to share the Internet, and two more to form two firewall-protected private networks.

Two private LANs with shared Internet
Figure 1: Two private LANs with shared Internet

The key requirement for setup is that each router must be set to a different Class C subnet.

Tip! TIP: Class C subnets have a maximum of 254 IP addresses, have the same first three "octets" in their addresses (ex. 192.168.3.X) and use a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0.

Tip! TIP: You don't have to use the 192.168.1.X, 192.168.2.X and 192.168.3.X subnets shown in the example. You can use any two private IP address ranges as long as they are different.

The top router ("Internet") takes the single Internet connection and shares it with everything connected to its LAN-side ports. But where you'd normally connect computers, we connect the WAN ports of two more routers - labeled "LAN 1" and "LAN 2" in Figure 1.

WAN setup for the "Internet" router depends on your ISP's requirements, but you have two options for the "LAN 1" and "LAN 2" router setups. You can either enable the "Internet" router's DHCP server and let it assign IP addresses to the other routers' WAN ports, or disable it and assign the IP addresses manually.

Tip! TIP: I suggest using the DHCP method, since if you enter the IP address info manually, you'll need to include the Gateway and DNS information, which you might have trouble figuring out.

You should be able to use normal UTP cables to connect the routers together. Connect any normal LAN port (don't use an "Uplink" port) on the "Internet" router to the WAN port of each of the two other routers. Illuminated Link lights at both ends of the connection should tell you when you've successfully connected.

LAN clients can all be set to obtain their IP address information automatically, or if you'd rather, you can set the addresses manually. Once everything's connected, you might have to Repair the connection on WinXP systems or use winipcfg or ipconfig to perform a manual DHCP release and renew, if you don't get a successful Internet connection on the first try. That's all there is to it!

More LAN & WAN

Wi-Fi System Tools
Check out our Wi-Fi System Charts, Ranker and Finder!

Support Us!

If you like what we do and want to thank us, just buy something on Amazon. We'll get a small commission on anything you buy. Thanks!

Over In The Forums

I am testing wan speed on a gigabit network while activating different options in the router. Here is what I got so far:- about 920 mbs while no optio...
So this is going to probably sound crazy but here is how this unfolded. I have a dedicated IP address on TorGuard's VPN service and it's been working ...
Hello,I have Guest Network enabled on my RT-AC68U router, I noticed the ip address assigned to the device connected on guest network are in the same i...
Hi,Since a few versions ago, the list of connected devices (Not sure how it was called, network map or so) seems to be completely broken on my AC68U.F...
Hi There, I've been checking the latest wireless systems for home and I came along Orbi and Google Wifi. I'm planning to upgrade my old Linksys router...

Don't Miss These

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3