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Routing Features

The 655's feature set is similar to that of its other Ubicom-based routers including the DGL-4300 that I previously reviewed. So I'll just summarize the key features here and you can check the slideshow for other screenshots. Or use D-Link's online emulator to explore the entire 655 admin interface.

NOTE!NOTE: The emulator is still at firmware version 1.02, while this review is based on the version 1.03 and 1.04, Draft 2.0 firmware.

Check out the slideshow Check out the slideshow for a router admin interface tour.

Status > Device Info page
Click to enlarge image

Figure 7: Status > Device Info page

Router and Bridge (AP) mode - Radio buttons on the Setup > Network Settings page make it easy to use the router as an AP. "Bridge" mode disables the DHCP server and requires that you set a static IP address for the 655.

WAN Support - Types handled include Static, Dynamic, PPPoE, PPTP, L2TP and BigPond. All modes support MAC address spoofing and setting MTU.

Firewall - In addition to being quite speedy, the 655's router firewall is pretty full-featured. All port forwarding and filtering features can be scheduled, with schedules applied on a rule-by-rule basis. Single port, port range and triggered port range forwarding methods are all there.

MAC address filtering (Network Filter) applies to both wired and wireless clients. But Access Controls may take a bit of getting used to. You define Access Control rules for each machine separately and can block all or some web access and/or just log web access. You can't copy rules to ease the pain of setup, but you can define a rule for all machines that don't have a specific policy set.

I messed up when I first tried the "block some access" option, which works with the Website Filter feature. I assumed that the 40 entries allowed were for domains to be blocked. But instead, enabling the "block some" option blocks all domains except those entered in the Website Filter list. A bit counter-intuitive, but once I got it configured correctly, the feature worked fine and wasn't able to be bypassed by using a site's IP address.

If you want to block more than just web access, you can also set up filters to block access to specific IP addresses and/or ports. You also can filter all inbound traffic for eight IP address ranges and tweak the ways that the router handles UDP and TCP sessions.

Firewall Settings provide a range of options that allow detailed control of traffic flow through the router. There are options here that I've never seen on routers in this class, but fortunately, the online Help actually has understandable explanations of the various options. And finally, for you advanced types, you can enter up to 32 static routes.

Dynamic DNS clients - Clients for various Dyndns.org options and D-Link's DLinkDDNS.com service (also provided by Dyndns.org) are supported.

QoS - Since I tested Ubicom's technology when I reviewed the D-Link DGL-4300 and Hawking HBB1 Broadband Booster and found it to work, I didn't repeat that testing for the 655. Suffice it to say that it works very well and you don't have to think much about it at all.

Logging and Reporting - Log messages are clearly written in plain English, with separate categories and levels. But you need to be careful when setting the View Levels, since the required reboot will clear the log. On a more positive note, logging to a syslog server is supported and the emailed alerts and logs feature worked fine when I tested it with my ISP's SMTP server that requires user and password authentication.

 

Even with all of the above routerly goodness, however, there are still a few omissions:

Secure remote access - Remote access is HTTP only, but you can apply the inbound traffic filters and set the port number.

Admin idle timeout adjust - One of my personal annoyances. The timeout appears to be fixed at around 5 minutes.

No separate Traffic Log - Although the log messages are clearly written in plain English, the handling of traffic logging is disappointing. Traffic log entries don't have a separate category, so you'll have to wade through the other Info category messages.

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