Despite these minor issues however, once you’re all plugged in, installed, setup and ready to go, you get yourself full access to the router via a simple IP plugged into the address bar of your browser.
The first screen gives you the same setup wizard that you just ran through so no need to do that again. You also have the internet and wireless setup menus on the left, these allows similar walkthroughs for getting you started. Each one gives you the ability to adjust login and password systems too.
Local network lets you view some LAN settings and what systems are currently connected.
Time and date allows the setup of what you’d imagine, the time. Annoyingly though it doesn’t automatically detect your daylight savings based on your region, so you need to manually put it in. I thought the whole point of it being automatic was so that I don’t have to remember it?
Moving on to the "Advanced" tab at the top, you have your wireless settings which can be fine tuned in a variety of ways. You can also setup guest access, potentially allowing for several limited connections to the system to connect through pre-configured logins. You can have up to 4 guest accounts, each with a maximum of 32 clients each, giving you a potential 128 people utilising your router at once.
There’s MAC filtering which allows you to disable certain wireless devices at certain times of day. A pretty good parental feature for those looking to keep their kids offline at night.
In security settings you have the setting up of certain encryption and password functions. You have the choice of WPA, WPA2, a combination of both or WEP.
In WPS settings you can alter the station pint but not a lot else.
Port forwarding is handled in a relatively simply manner, allowing for the input of External and internal ports, the selection of TCP or UDP, scheduled times for such ports to be active and even remote IP for certain server configurations. However you do have to put in your local IP address as there’s no drop down list of connected devices.
For those not interested in port forwarding you can simply open everything and point it straight to your system. To do so input your IP address into the DMZ Host IP section and away you go. Not recommended for anyone who’s even remotely security concious.
Parental controls allow the blocking of websites or certain MAC addresses.
Filtering options make it possible for you to block information from certain IPs, incoming and outgoing. Feel like you’re being targeted by someone malicious? Bung their IP in here and no more traffic from them.
The QOS filtering page allows you to specify the ammount of bandwidth that each device attached to the network utilises. Combine this with some of the other parental controls, and you have quite a firm grasp on what others on your network are looking at and how much bandwidth they have to do it with.
In the Firewall settings you can switch on and off several security features, including the "Attack Prevention" one.
DNS and it’s Dynamic sibling’s pages give you the option of manually inputting the DNS server you connect to.
In network tools you have a whole host of options:
- Port Mapping: This allows you to select certain ethernet ports as their own network operating seperately from the main one. A network within a network.
- IGMP Proxy: This gives you the option of simultaneously broadcasting certain media to different devices on the network.
- IGMP Snooping: Lets you keep an eye on the above setting.
- UPNP: Toggles whether you have UPNP on or off.
- ADSL: Turns on and off various advanced ADSL functions.
- SNMP: This menu configures options for the Simple Network Management Protocol.
- TR-069: Various options for remotely configuring devices using the Broadband forum specification.
- Certificates: Allows the adding of certain trusted CA certificates.
The Routing page gives you the option of routing your connection and adjusting the default gateway that you connect to the internet through.