1. A router is a device that has several Ethernet ports on the back of the device. One of the connectors will be labeled WAN. You should connect the WAN port to the Ethernet connection on a broadband source, such as a cable or DSL modem. The other ports on the router can be connected other computers or switches/hubs that will share the WAN connection.
Routers allow you to share your broadband connection with multiple computers in your house. Rather than connecting your computer directly into your cable or DSL modem you connect the router to the cable or DSL modem. Now any computer that you connect to the router will have access to the Internet.
If you run out of ports on your router you can always connect an additional switch to the router. To connect a switch to a router simply connects the switch’;s “uplink” port to one of the routers Ethernet ports. Of course, don’;t connect to the router’;s WAN port. The WAN port should only be connected to something such as a cable or DSL router.
Some routers come with additional features installed. Most routers also include a firewall. Firewalls are discussed in the next section. Some routers will also include a wireless access point (WAP). The WAP allows you to use wireless devices, such as wireless laptops, with the Internet.
2. A router is a device or a piece of software in a computer that forwards and routes data packets along networks.
A router connects at least two networks, commonly two LANs or WANs or a LAN and its ISP network. A router is often included as part of a network switch. A router is located at any gateway where one network meets another, including each point-of-presence on the Internet.