Did you just buy a Netgear router?
If so, you might be looking at it and wondering exactly how to put it all together and connect to the Internet.
After all, this is the era of instant tech feedback, right? We expect to press a few buttons or swipe a few screens and have all the connectivity we need right at our fingertips.
Today, we’re providing your complete guide to Netgear router setup, taking you from in-the-box to up-and-running quicker than you ever thought possible.
While there are a few steps involved, the good news is that they don’t have to take long if you know the proper protocol to follow.
Ready to get started? Grab that new router and let’s go!
Step One: Grab Your Modem
If you have a Netgear router, you more than likely want to connect to the Internet. To provide an online connection to all of your network devices, you’ll need to first connect your router to a modem.
If you fail to perform this step, you’ll still have access to a Local Area Network (LAN). This means that all of your devices can connect to each other in the same general space, such as a home or office. Yet, you won’t be able to pull up any web pages until you add that critical modem component.
That means if you’re working in an office, all of your disparate systems can be on the same network, but none will be online.
Why Do I Need a Modem?
Your modem acts as the middle-man between your home and your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Your ISP is the company responsible for providing either your cable or Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) Internet service.
Put simply, as information travels from your ISP to your computer, it does so in the form of analog waves. Yet, your computer can’t recognize or use these waves, as it stores data digitally instead.
That’s where your modem comes in.
Its main job is to receive those analog waves and convert them to digital signals, where your computer can easily pick them up.
Importance of Network Connectivity
If you’re working in an individual setting, on only one device (e.g., your personal laptop), you can just hook your modem up to your computer for Internet access. Yet, if you want to access the Internet from two or more devices, a router is necessary.
If you want your network to have an Internet connection, your Netgear router setup must include a connection to your modem.
Keep in mind that a “network” isn’t just a term reserved for corporate settings with slews of computers.
A network can be as simple as the set of technology your family uses to hop online. Got a smartphone, laptop, and a tablet in your home? Yep, you’ve got a network.
Today, there are many modems that come equipped with a router already installed.
If this is the case for you, you can skip this step, as your router will automatically come equipped with Internet capability.
Step 2: Find the WAN Ethernet Port
Before you begin, make sure both your modem and router are unplugged.
Then, look at the back of your router and locate its Wide Area Network (WAN) Ethernet port. On Netgear routers, this port is typically highlighted in yellow with the words “Uplink” or “WAN.”
You’ll likely see several Ethernet ports on the back of your Netgear router, but they aren’t there to confuse you.
They provide connectivity for all the other computers and devices that run on your network, though many will undoubtedly connect wirelessly as well.
Just look for the Ethernet port that looks different from the rest.
Using an Ethernet cable (usually also yellow to match the ports), connect one end to the WAN Ethernet port on your router.
Step 3: Connect the Modem
The next step in your Netgear router setup is to find the Ethernet port on the back of your modem.
Connect the other end of the Ethernet cable to the Ethernet port on the back of the modem.
Plug your modem into the outlet.
Step 4: Configure Your Netgear Router Setup
Next, find another available Ethernet port on your router (on the same row as your Ethernet cable is now hooked up).
Using a separate Ethernet cable, connect your router to your computer’s Ethernet port. It’s helpful to use a cable in a different color, such as blue, to distinguish it from the other cable.
When this step is complete, your computer, modem, and router are all joined and able to “talk” to one another.
Step 5: Setting Up Your Login
Once you’re all set up, locate the installation CD that came with your router and put it into your computer.
From there, you’ll be able to open the software and use a wizard to help with the remainder of the Netgear router setup.
There are three decisions you’ll make concerning your router using this wizard. They include:
- How it should hook up to the Internet
- Setting up your wireless access with a name and password
- Establishing administrator settings to ensure privacy and security
If for any reason you can’t access those configurations using the Netgear-provided software, you can still get to your settings.
Just look at the bottom of your router for your unique login website. It could be something as simple as “www.routerlogin.net.”
You can type that address into any Internet browser to instantly access your router’s setup page and make any necessary configuration changes.
Need More Help with Your Netgear Router Setup? Start Here!
If you’re still unsure how to get started with your Netgear router, we can help.
We provide handy and helpful Netgear-centric tips and tricks that cover everything from installation to troubleshooting support and everything in between.
Whether you’re just starting out with your systems or have been using them for years, there’s always something new to learn.
If you experience any issues or have any questions, feel free to reach out to us. We’ll hook you up with the answers you need!