Setting up a home Wi-Fi network using a MacBook Pro and an Airport Extreme Base Station can be frustrating. However, by avoiding some common mistakes, an Airport Extreme home Wi-Fi network can be up and running in as little as 20 minutes.
When you're done, you will be able to share your ADSL/Cable connection with your MacBook Pro, and give Wi-Fi access to all your other Apple devices, as well as PCs.
The Apple Airport Extreme Base Station is a router, not a modem. Therefore, if you enter your ISP password into the Airport Extreme, as well as your ADSL or cable modem/router, you will create a double-NAT environment, which can create connectivity issues.
The most important thing to remember is that only ONE device can do NAT and DHCP. And it should be done by the device that is also doing the routing. In this case, that is the Airport Extreme.
Make sure your ADSL or Cable connection is plugged into the modem and the power is turned on. Then connect your ADSL/Cable modem WAN port (internet) directly to your MacBook Pro using an Ethernet cable.
Now login to your modem using the IP address from the manufacturer. It should be listed somewhere on the unit and is ususally an address like 192.168.0.1, or 192.168.1.1. There is also a password requirement which should also be listed on the ADSL/Cable modem label. If you can't find it, try "admin" in both entry fields, or visit the manufacturers website for the password.
Once you have logged into the router, there should be a setup tab. Click on it and you should see a place to enter your ISP information, such as PPoE, etc. Instead of entering your ISP password information, click on the drop down menu and look for a option that says “bridge” or "Bridge only." Then select it.
Now that you have set up your ADSL/Cable modem in bridge mode, connect it from the WAN port to your Airport Extreme WAN port using a CAT 5 or CAT 6 network Ethernet cable.
Then using another Ethernet cable, connect the Airport Extreme LAN port to your Macbook Pro.
Now you are ready to setup the Airport Extreme as a router and access point for your home Wi-Fi network.
Airport Extreme Wi-Fi network setup
Use Spotlight or Finder to navigate to your Airport Utility App. From the menu, choose setup wireless network.
Under the setup heading, select PPoE for ADSL and most cable ISP services.
Under the ISP requirement settings, enter the user name and password provided to you by your ISP. Hit enter and move on to security settings.
It is recommended that you add a WPA2 personal security passphrase to block outside access to your network.
After you have setup your ADSL/Cable Modem in bridge mode and entered your ISP settings in the Airport Extreme, you’re done. The little green light of happiness should become solid and steady almost immediately.
Other Apple devices and PCs will now be able to connect to your Airport Extreme network by simply entering the security passphrase you entered under the WPA2 personal settings.
If you have entered all the above information correctly and something is still not connecting, turn everything off and wait two mintues. Then reboot the modem and router, then your MacBook Pro - in that order. The problem should be solved.
For questions and/or problems, send me an email and I will try to help you sort things out.
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