How to Use a Wireless Router as a Bridge to an Existing Network

By Justen Everage

Networks consisting of multiple, separate segments can be merged into a single, larger network through the installation of a network bridge. One way to create such a bridge is to use a wireless router. Wireless bridges reduce the need for network cabling and can combine network segments that are hundreds of feet apart. To use a wireless router as a bridge, one must connect the wireless router to the router of an existing network and configure an IP protocol for the subsequent network segment.

Step 1

Place the wireless router near the existing network router and plug in its power adapter. Connect an Ethernet cable to the wireless router's WAN port. Connect the other side of the cable to one of the existing router's LAN ports.

Step 2

Plug an Ethernet cable into one of the wireless router's LAN ports. Power a computer on and plug the other end of the Ethernet cable into the computer's network identification card (NIC.) This process can also be performed through a wireless connection. To connect to the wireless router without Ethernet cable, use a wireless adapter and connect using the wireless router's broadcast ID and password.

Step 3

Open a Web browser on the connected computer and type the wireless router's IP address in the browser's universal resource locater (URL) bar. Unless the wireless router has already been configured, its IP address should be The wireless router's interface should appear in the browser's window. Locate the basic configuration tab in the interface.

Step 4

Configure the IP address assignment protocol on the wireless router. A common protocol is dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP), which assigns IP addresses automatically. Networks without frequent changes may want to use Static IP configuration for added network security. To assign an IP address statically, choose the "Static" option in the router configuration settings and add the IP address of each computer to the network list.

Step 5

Add additional computers and network equipment to the new segment and log on to the Internet, or the existing network, with each device to test connectivity.