Wireless networks have become extremely popular in houses and people have personal wireless networks in their houses or offices for sharing the network resources. It is also because of the increasing usage of laptops and other notebooks. If you have a laptop then you will not want to keep it on table hooked up with a LAN cable for accessing internet or accessing other resources on the network. You will always want to get rid of the cumbersome LAN cables and use the invisible and neat networking structure using a wireless network. Another reason for the gaining popularity of wireless networks can be the pricing of wireless routers. Earlier routers were very expensive and were generally used only in offices, and other commercial buildings, but after the launch of various router models for home users has increased its demand and usage. But just like any other technology even wireless networks have many aspects which needs to be addressed for its proper use.

If your wireless network is not safe and secure then you might end up compromising your data or other resources to the hackers. By saying this I mean that if your wireless network is not secure then anybody who will come in the range of your network can easily connect to your network and access the Internet and can also access your home computers which are already connected to the network. In this post I will discuss how to make your personal wireless network secure and safe, so that only people who are authorised to use it would be able to use it and nobody else.

Step1: for time setup you would need to connect the router to a computer using a LAN cable. If you already have a wireless network setup but is unsecured then you can configure it wirelessly as well.

Step 2: after connecting the router open Start and type Command and press enter. When the Command window opens type IPCONFIG and press enter. This will give you the IP Address of your computer and will also give you the Default Gateway.

Step 3: Open any internet browser and type the Default Gateway address in the Address Bar and press enter.

Step 4: as a result of Step3, you will get a login window where you need to enter the username and password to enter the Router Settings page. The default username and password is always mentioned on the router, but if you have changed it earlier then you need to enter the correct password to login.

Step 5: in the Setting Page (also called as Router Console) you have to click on WLAN and there you need to give a name to your wireless network(SSID). Users who already have an unsecured wireless network can skip this step and go to Step6.

Step 6: Click on WLAN Security and here you need to select the encryption type. Better is to select the WEP encryption as it is supported by almost all the network cards installed on laptops and desktops. Now you need to enter a passphrase and a network key. This network key will work as the password for your network and people who want to connect to your network should possess this key (including you).

Step 7: after setting up the key log off from the routers console. If you were making these changes after being connected wirelessly to the router then you will lose the connection because now your wireless router has started sending encrypted signals which your computer is not able to decrypt. Next steps is to search for your wireless network again from your computer and attempt connecting to it. Now it will demand a password to connect and you have to enter the password which you had setup in step6.

Step 8: Entering the password for connecting needs to be done on all the computers which you want to get connected to the router and this will be a one time activity as Windows will save the password for future connections.

By following these 8 simple steps your Wireless Network will be as safe and secure as a Wired Network. The term WEP stand for Wireless Equivalent Privacy and it actually works like that. No one can now access your wireless network without your consent as it is you who knows the key to access.