IN THIS CHAPTER
This chapter explains in detail how to set up your access pointso that this device, which is the brains of your wireless network, can do its job the way that you want it to.
It turns out that the access point used to control your network is a very powerful device. Assuming that you are using a combination wireless access point and router such as the units described in Chapter 12, "Buying a Wi-Fi Access Point or Router," you have a great deal of control over both how the computers on your network interoperate (and "talk" to the access point) and how your network accesses the Internet.
In this chapter, I'll start by providing some additional information you might need to connect to the Internet and to keep your access point up-to-date. Next, I'll talk about access control mechanisms built in to your access point that relate to your LAN (local area network). I'll also explain some mechanisms built in to your access point that allow you to control the access that computers on your network have to the Internet.
It's a good idea to know something about the basic technologies that make the connection work between the Internet and your home or small office network. In this chapter, I'll explain static versus dynamic IP addressing, Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Network Address Translation (NAT), and DNS (Domain Name Service).
Finally, I'll show you a good alternative way to set up a mixed wired-wireless network that differs from the scenario I explained in Chapter 13, "Setting Up Your Access Point."