Many P2P networking programs require certain network ports to be fully open in order to operate at peak efficiency. While the ports on the host computer can often be opened by the P2P software itself, if the computer connects to a router for Internet access, the same ports must also be opened on the router. This task cannot be performed by the P2P software and must be done by either the user or the network administrator. This guide will help the average user learn how to configure a router for P2P networking.
Locate the owner's manual for the router. Find the default IP address, user name, and password for the router.
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Type the IP address of the router into a web browser window, and press the "Enter" key on the keyboard or the "Go" button in the browser. Typically, the address will be something like "http://192.168.0.1."
Enter the user name and the password into the appropriate boxes. Many routers use "Admin" as the default for both the password and user name.
Find the section in the router's configuration interface labeled "Port Forwarding," or something similar. Each router places the setting in a slightly different location. On some routers, it may be under the "Applications" section, on others, it may be under the "Gaming" section. Consult the router manual for details.
Insert the IP address of the computer with the P2P software into the field labeled "IP Address." The IP address for a windows machine can be found by clicking the "Start" button, selecting "Settings" and then "Control Panel." From the Control Panel, select the "Network Connections" icon. Right click on the icon for the Ethernet card, often labeled "Local Area Connection," and select "Status." Click on the "Support" tab, and record the IP address shown.
Type the port number that is to be opened into the "Port" section. Consult the instructions for the P2P software to learn which port or ports need to be opened.
Select the networking protocol that will be used by that port. This information can also be found int the instructions for the P2P software.
Save the changes, and reboot the router if required.
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While logged in to the router, it is advisable to change the user name, password, router name to something other than the default entries. This will help to prevent outsiders from gaining access to the router.