The most common need of port forwarding is for online gaming, but there also other circumstance where you’ll want to forward ports. For example, when you need to be able to connect from the internet to your FTP server or just to connect to your VPN server to remote access your home computer. Often times if you try to connect, for instance an FTP server the router will block the transfer of data. The solution is to open the corresponding port in the router for the data to pass through. Depending on the application you will need to open, or forward, specific port(s) in order for them to work.

How to configure port forwarding on a router

As I mentioned before knowing how to configure Port Forwarding in one router will help you to configure almost every home router you can encounter. The user interface and section names may be slightly different but the configuration is the same.

Enter the IP address of the computer with the application that needs the external access. An easy way to find your computer IP address is by launching the Command Prompt and type: ipconfig and under the Wireless LAN adapter Wireless Network Connection or Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection look for the IPv4 Address, which will be the IP address of your machine.

Double check when you type the IP address. Every time your router is turned off or on, the computer may get assigned a new IP address, in which case you need to go to the router’s Port Forwarding page again and change the IP address to the new one. One way to avoid the router from assigning a new IP address by setting a static IP address to your computer. Always have the router’s manual nearby, you could need it for more details on how to access your router and other settings. Make sure that the application with the port forwarded is not being blocked by your computer’s Firewall. Check How to allow programs to communicate through Windows Firewall.

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