AT&T Internet uses its own residential gateway that isn’t very powerful or configurable. For a while I used an AT&T U-Verse connection as a failover for my home network, since I work from home and Spectrum outages meant I couldn’t work. So here’s how I configured an Asus dual WAN router with AT&T Internet, using AT&T U-Verse as a secondary connection, with Charter Spectrum on my primary. This will also work the same way with AT&T Fiber.
I switched back from Spectrum to AT&T exclusively. Here’s why. But you may want to set up failover between AT&T and another provider. It worked reasonably well for me, and it’ll probably work at least as well for you, too.
How often should you replace your router? That’s a harder question than how often you should change the oil in your car, or how often you should replace your hot water heater. Unlike a laptop, I can’t really predict when your router is going to break. And a router may go obsolete for me faster than it goes obsolete for you. But I can give you some guidance.
Sometimes your ISP will provide a router. They may or may not charge for this. It’s worth making a phone call to see. If they charge you some kind of a rental fee, it’s cheaper to buy your own router. If they don’t charge you, and keeping it running and maintained is their problem, not yours, you might as well take them up on the offer. I think the potential to save $100 is worth a phone call.
It’s hard to know how to find my router IP address, since it’s arbitrary. Usually your router lives at one end or the other of your network, but there’s no reason why it has to. So if someone decided to get tricky, here’s how to find it.
There was a time when knowing your router IP was a matter of survival, but these days networking normally configures itself, using a technology called DHCP. That puts your router IP address out of sight and out of mind. But it turns out there are several ways to find the router IP, and some of them work no matter what kind of computer you have.
What is a runbook? It’s an IT phrase you hear thrown around a lot these days and everyone assumes you know what one is. I actually wrote runbooks at a couple of different points in my career without knowing that’s what I was doing. So it’s OK if you don’t know what one is. I’ll explain it.
If you have a large collection of music or movies, it’s nice to have a server to put it on. And having a server lets you do some other cool stuff too. But if you’ve priced an enterprise server, it might scare you off. Let’s talk about cheap home server options.
Like most people, I used consumer-grade switches on my home network for years and years, like TP-Link switches. They’re fine, but my older Linksys switch started acting flaky the other night. My oldest son’s computer kept dropping off the network. So that got me thinking. Do I need a managed switch at home?
Whether I need a managed switch for my home network or not, I bought a Dell Powerconnect 2824 smart managed switch, and I got it for less than a Linksys. This is a great opportunity to learn wired networking at home, the way businesses do it. Sure, it’s overkill, but here’s why I think it’s a good idea.
You may hear the words Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet thrown around a lot, and it can raise some questions. Which one is faster? Which is better? How can one compare Fast Ethernet vs Gigabit Ethernet? Despite the name, Gigabit Ethernet is faster than Fast Ethernet. Here’s why you need to care about the difference.
Hosting your own web server at home isn’t for everyone, but I’ve been doing it for the better part of two decades now. I think it’s good operational experience. My stories of running my own web server get mixed reactions at work, but some people certainly take interest in my experience dealing with it, especially since such stories tend to be rare from a security professional. I think hosting my own web server helps me stay in touch with the rest of the IT world.