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LAN & WAN Reviews

DMZ and Dual WAN

A more minor oddity has to do with how you deactivate router's use of the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) private address port once it has been assigned to a DMZ host : Linksys asks that you enter in the DMZ Private Address space the value of zero (0). The use of zero (0) to deactivate the settings seems a bit kludged, since my first instinct would be that I've just opened up the entire subnet to be completely exposed. A radio button or a check box showing activate or deactivate would have been more appropriate.

Not to confuse things, but there is also a WAN port that has the name DMZ / Internet. This is the port used for either the second cable modem (or DSL modem) or may be used as a public DMZ. The public DMZ is not the same thing as the DMZ private address. The DMZ / Internet port logically exists between the local network LAN ports and the Internet port. If you are not using the DMZ Internet port for a second connection to the Internet, you can stage servers on the DMZ that are more exposed than the PC on your LAN. Typically servers in the DMZ these would be providing public services, such mail or FTP. Using the DMZ / Internet port on the RV082 router the servers connected to the DMZ Internet port are publicly accessible, but they are protected from attacks such as SYN Flooding and Ping of Death.

If you are not planning on hosting public servers, such as an FTP server the DMZ Internet port can be used to provide dual WAN connections. Using the DMZ / Internet port for a second connection to the Internet means you give up the public DMZ function on that port, but you gain Linksys' Dual-WAN capability. Dual-WAN can work in two modes: Smart Link Backup or Load Balance.

If Smart Link Backup is selected, you only need to choose which WAN port is the primary and then the other will be the backup. If you lose your connection to the Internet on your primary the backup takes over. This is considered active / passive, since the backup sits idle and does no work unless the primary link fails.

If Load Balance is selected, there will be two main choices: By Traffic - Intelligent Balancer (Auto) and user defined. In Load Balance mode, first, choose the Max. Bandwidth of Upstream (64K/128K/256K/384K/512K/1024K/1.5M/2M/2.5M or above) and Downstream (512K/1024K/1.5M/2M/2.5M or above) for WAN1 and WAN2. I recommend you run a speed test first using one of the many bandwidth testing sites available on the Internet so that you will put in realistic numbers. Wishful numbers won't increase your actual bandwidth.

The other option is Intelligent Balancer (Auto), which will automatically compute the maximum bandwidth of WAN1 and WAN2 by using Weighted Round Robin to balance the loading. If the upstream / downstream bandwidth demands are in excess of a threshold (30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%), the Linksys will bring up the second link. When the activity subsides, a time-out occurs (None/10min/20min/30min/40min/50min/60min), and the second link will be terminated.

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