This Tutorial can be utilized in a business network environment. This is based on my knowledge on how to configure a Buffalo AP (Access Points)/Bridge Router (other Brand and Model of AP/Bridge Routers may have some similar features) that’s connected behind a Sonicwall TZ 210 or any Firewall/Security Appliance. An installation CD is not required in this entire Tutorial, please leave it up to me to guide you.
Pre-requisites: A broadband connection, A Windows Server 2003 and above (best to use a Windows 2008 Server R2) configured with Dynamic Host configuration Protocol (DHCP) and Domain Name System (DNS), a Security or Firewall Appliance, an AP/Bridge Wireless Router capable (we will use a Buffalo AP/Bridge in this Tutorial), wired computers, wireless computers and other wireless devices such as IPad, Tablets & Smart Phones.
Additional information: Your Firewall or Security Appliance must have the Network Address Translation (NAT) enabled. Make sure that DHCP is disabled from your Firewall/Security Appliance.
Make a note of the existing Subnet of your network, for example: 192.168.1.X which we will be using in this Tutorial. Also, write the IP Address, Subnet, Gateway and DNS Server that you will be going to assign in the LAN configuration of your Router. Note that the Gateway will be your router’s new IP Address.
Note: The network cables that are connected from the Modem and Network Switch to the Sonicwall’s WAN and LAN Ports will remain untouchable in this entire tutorial. It is important to remember not to disconnect or unplug any of these network cables.
To begin, connect the power cable into the Buffalo Router, wait for the lights to stabilize. Connect a patch network cable from the WAN or Internet Port of the Router to the Sonicwall Port (X2, X3 etc.). Connect another patch network cable coming from a computer to another open ethernet port (X2 or X3) of the Sonicwall device.
While your computer is connected directly to the Sonicwall device, modify the Local Area Network (LAN) setting. In this guide, we will be using the network subnet of 192.168.11.X (Buffalo’s Router Subnet).
In Windows 7 and Vista – Click on the Start button type ncpa.cpl then press enter to open up the Local Area Connection screen. Double click on Local Area Connection, then click on Properties, double-click Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IP v4).
In Windows XP – Click on Start, type ncpa.cpl then press enter to open up the Local Area Connection screen.
Double click on Local Area Connection, then click on Properties, double-click on Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IP v4).
Type the IP Address, Subnet Mask, Default Gateway and DNS Server of your Network. In this tutorial we will assign an IP Address of 192.168.11.5, Subnet Mask of 255.255.255.0 and a Default gateway of 192.168.11.1. Leave the DNS Servers empty.
Open up a browser from your computer and type the Buffalo Router’s default IP of 192.168.11.1, it will prompt you to change the default User Name and Password, just in case you will need to enter the default.
Make sure to use a complex password. Think of a combination letters, numbers and symbols for your router’s new password but easier for you to remember.
In the Network Settings Tab, go to Network Setup, type in the Router’s New IP, Subnet Mask, Gateway and Local DNS for example 192.168.1.3. Remember, this is from your network’s current Subnet configuration. Make sure to disable DHCP to avoid any conflicts and verify that DHCP is enabled in your Windows Server.
In the Wireless Tab, then Basic Settings, you may choose if you’d like to setup your Router as an AP (Access Points) or Client Bridge. I’d prefer a Client Bridge for a greater wireless coverage. Select Client Bridge (Router).
Assign an SSID for your wireless network. Do not use your Router’s Name.
You may manually or use Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) to secure your wireless network by using WPA2, do not use any network security lower than WPA2, you do not want your wireless network to be vulnerable from outside unseen malicious objects and threats. You may auto generate the pass-phrase or manually assign a complex password for your wireless network.
Important Notes: Some ISPs may require a MAC Cloning. You will need to contact your ISP regarding this. To do this, go to Setup, then MAC Address Clone, then enable.
Unplug the network cable from the Buffalo Router’s WAN Port and unplug the network cable coming from the Sonicwall’s X2 or X3 Port. Unplug the power cable from the Buffalo router and wait for 30 seconds, then plug the power cable back again, wait for all the lights to stabilize. Now, connect the network cable to the Sonicwall’s X2 or X3 Port and connect the other end into the LAN Port of the Buffalo Router. You may now connect all your wireless devices to your new SSID (wireless network name), make sure that you have the proper pass-phrase typed in.
Open up your browser from any of your computers (wired and wireless) and see if you’re able to log on to your router using the new Router’s IP which in this Tutorial we assigned a 192.168.1.X. You may enable or modify other great features of your new router.
I hope that this Tutorial helped you connect an AP/Bridge Router into your Security or Firewall Appliance. Utilize the great features of your new router if you have them, for example the NAS, Guest Zone and FTP would be great to have.