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Networking, Routers, Switches, Firewalls

 Basic DHCP Setup and Consideration

If you have a router or server running DHCP service for the network always be sure to set the DHCP pool to not fully use the entire subnet. For example if your network is using the 192.168.x.x subnet you will want some devices to use static or fixed IP addresses.  Devices like servers, printers, switches, routers should have static IP addresses so that you will always know their IP address for management, configuration and server share locations.  Problems can be created if you assign devices fixed IP addresses within the DHCP pool. 

I like using the top addresses on a subnet for static IP addresses and the lower addresses for the DHCP pool.  The number of devices you are servicing with the DHCP pool should determine how large your pool is, always keeping in mind future expansion or adding more devices later. 

I even go as far as grouping specific types of devices with sequential IP addresses.  For example I might make the servers use addresses 192.168.1. 5 through 192.168.1.10  Then I will set all the network printers to sequential address from `192.168.1.12 through 192.168.1.15.  Then switches and routers from 192.168.1.20 through 192.168.1.30. 

The DHCP pool should be setup to handle all other devices and workstations.  So I like to set the DHCP pool on the bottom half of the subnet starting at 192.168.1.100 through 192.168.1.253, leaving 192.168.1.254 for the broadcast address.

An organized use of your subnet will make managing and using your network much easier and less confusing.

Setup a Wireless Router as a Wireless Access Point.

If you are wanting to extend your wireless service or even add wireless service to your business or home network, but already have a router handling DHCP for the network you would add a wireless access point.

Shopping for Wireless Access Points you will notice that Wireless Routers are cheaper than AP’s in some cases.  You can setup a wireless router to act only as an access point for the network.

To setup a router as a wireless access point you will turn off DHCP service on the router and assign it to a fixed IP address.  When you attach the router to the network as a router you’d normally connect an ethernet cable to the LAN Uplink port on the back of the router.  To have it function as an access point you will need to connect it to your network with an ethernet cable plugged into one of the switch ports on the back of the router. 

Now you should be able to connect wirelessly to your network and the DHCP server should lease the device an IP address from the DHCP pool.

 

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