How to Configure a Cable Modem for WiFi

By Susan Reynolds

If you have a single modem but several computers or laptops in your household, you will need to hook your modem up to a router, which is a device that connects to the modem and broadcasts a signal so you can have a wireless network in your home. There are specific steps you must follow to configure your modem to connect with a router or your Wi-Fi signal may not reach your computer. Most modem have the ability to connect to a router, but you should read the manual on your modem to make sure you can use it for Wi-Fi connections.

Things You'll Need

  • Modem
  • Router
  • Ethernet cable
  • PC

Step 1

Install a modem to one of your computers by hooking the modem up to a wall cable connection and running an Ethernet cable between the modem and your PC. Click on a browser to see if you have Internet connection. If you do, proceed to Step 2. If you do not, contact your Internet service provider and have them activate your modem over the phone.

Step 2

Unplug your modem from the power source to turn it off.

Step 3

Remove the Ethernet cable end from your PC and plug it into the router where it says "Internet" on the port. Do not plug in your router to the power source yet.

Step 4

Plug in your modem. Wait five minutes for the lights to finish flashing while it acquires your IP address.

Step 5

Plug your router into an outlet and wait five minutes for the lights to finish flashing.

Step 6

Connect one end of the cable that came with your router into the Ethernet port on your PC and hook the other end into an open port on the router.

Step 7

Restart your computer and open a browser window to configure your router connections. Type the IP address that is labeled on the bottom of your router into your browser address bar. Hit "Enter" to load the configuration page. Set your password and name your home connection. Hit "OK" to save your changes and unplug the cable from your computer.

Tips & Warnings

  • These steps only work if you already have a network card and a wireless card or adapter installed on your computer. The network card allows for a hard wire connection. The wireless card or adapter allows for a wireless signal.
  • The above instructions say to wait for five minutes when powering up your modem and router. Both should be set long before that, but to be safe it is best to give it plenty of time.