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Help with network setup, connect modem<-- switch<-- router (DHCP?)

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Rob Kuhn

Is your cable modem also a router? In other words if it's just a plain cable modem then it doesn't have the ability to provide DHCP so the switch really doesn't matter unless it's a L2/L3 switch in which case it would have DHCP/DNS services.

With that said I'm going to go under the assumption that it's just a plain cable modem and what I would do is take the wireless router, plug the WAN side of it into the back of your cable modem. Then plug the LAN side into your switch.

If my assumption is incorrect and your cable modem is also a router (it will have more than one LAN port on the back), then connet the WAN side of the Wireless router into one of the LAN ports on the router.

Its your call if you wish to disable the DHCP service on the Wireless router or have it dish out DHCP to just your wireless devices. If you elect to do that then be sure to select a different IP network address range than what the cable modem is dishing out. If you want your wireless devices to connect/talk to devices that are on the hard wired side you will need to setup some routing accross the two networks.

If you want to make this easier, and you happen to have two routers (the cable modem and your Wireless), I'd plug the WAN side into the LAN side of the cable modem and run everything off the back of the wireless router. This way you don't have any routing issues and you only have to deal with one DHCP server.

What is the make and model of your cable modem, wireless router and switch?