Using the built-in Wi-Fi access point of the 2Wire Gateway is convenient for most subscribers. However, if you already have a newer 802.11n Wi-Fi router, or do online gaming or other advanced networking, you might want to use your own wireless router instead or in addition to the built-in Wi-Fi.
If your computers have 802.11n Wi-Fi capability, file sharing will be faster using your own 802.11n router than if you use the built-in 802.11g Wi-Fi. You might also want to use your own router if you have other features and settings customized. Your router might also have features and functionality that the basic 2Wire Gateway doesn’t offer, such as guest access or USB drive sharing.
To use your own wireless router, you must first make sure it won’t interfere with the 2Wire Gateway. The gateway’s default IP subnet is 192.168.1.x, which is the default for Linksys and other routers. If your router is in the same subnet (for example, if the IP address is 192.168.1.1), you need to change it to some other subnet before connecting it to the 2Wire Gateway. For example, you could change the router’s IP address to 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.2.1.
To check your router’s IP address and subnet plug it in, connect, open the Network Connection Status dialog window in Window and click the Details button. Then refer to the Default Gateway address, such as shown below.
If you need to change it, login to the router’s web-based control panel by entering the IP address into a web browser and find the network or LAN settings.
Next, plug-in your router by connecting one end of an Ethernet cable to the WAN (Internet) port of your router and the other end to one of the 4 Ethernet ports of the 2Wire Gateway. Don’t forget to plug the power cord into the wall.
Your router should receive an Internet IP address from the local network of the 2Wire Gateway. Though the Internet is accessible now on your router, you should configure the firewall of the 2Wire Gateway to connect the router directly to the Internet. This will prevent issues if you use certain Internet applications.
Connect to the gateway via the built-in Wi-Fi or Ethernet and bring up the web-based control panel by entering the IP address (192.168.1.254) into the web browser. Then click Settings, Firewall, and Applications, Pinholes and DMZ. Under the Select a computer step, select the link for your router, which may be labeled with the vendor name or the MAC address of the router. (If needed, you can find the MAC address printed on the router.) Next under the second step, select the Allow all applications option (see below), and click Save.
Note: The model number of the 2Wire Gateway I used is i38HG; the control panel of other models or firmware versions might vary.
You can optionally disable the built-in Wi-Fi of the 2Wire Gateway by clicking Settings, LAN, Wireless, and choosing Disabled for Wireless Access Point. However, don’t do this if you want to share photos and music from your computers to your TVs, as we’ll discuss next.