Cisco connect software is a step by step setup wizard which will help you connect your computers and devices to the Network and process of initial Linksys router setup. This software is specially designed for the initial installation of Linksys E-series and EA-series routers. This software works with all Linksys E-series routers, like E1000, E2000, E3000, E4200 and EA-series routers like EA4500, EA3500, EA2700. It also works with Cisco Valet M10 and Valet plus M20. It offers tools for managing wireless network such as security settings, Guest Access, Parental Controls and Advanced Settings.
Guest network access is a very good feature that you can use with Cisco Linksys E series routers. For Linksys E1000, E2000, E3000 routers, you need to install Cisco connect software in order to use Guest network access.
Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and WPA2 are the only encryption types that Cisco Connect supports because they ensure the highest security with the maximum speed within the network for wireless-N devices.
Operating system requirements for Cisco connect software:
The following are the system requirements needed in installing the Cisco Connect software:
• Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) or higher
• Safari 4 or higher
• Firefox 3 or higher
• Microsoft Windows XP SP3
• Microsoft Windows Vista SP1 and above
• Microsoft Windows 7
• Mac OS X Tiger
• Mac OS X Leopard
• Mac OS X Snow Leopard
• Mac OS X Lion
How to Download Cisco connect software:
Follow this link to download the software. In the middle of the page you will see Downloads tab. Click on that tab. Now select the Hardware version 1.0. Then you will see the list of models. Select the model number of your Linksys device and download the software.
Linksys router setup using Cisco connect software:
Step 1: Check the Internet connection through the modem. Connect the main computer directly to the modem and try to access Internet through the modem. If you are not able to access Internet through the modem then you should first contact the Internet service provider and get your modem working.
Step 2: Connect the computer to the Ethernet port 1 and modem to the Internet port on the router. Check the lights on the router. You will see 4 lights Power, port 1, Internet and wireless. I will recommend you to connect the computer with the Ethernet cable as it will not prompt you to do so. Once you finish installation, you can disconnect the computer if you want.
Step 3: Run the Cisco connect software on the main computer. The software will start setting up your network. You don’t have to do anything. If you are using DSL Internet connection then it will prompt you to enter the PPPoE user name and password if required. Otherwise you don’t need to change the settings.
It may take 5 to 10 minutes to finish the setup. It will create a secured wireless network for you.
The name of the wireless network will be funny like white monkey, red lion or something like that.
The password of the wireless network will be the password of the router log in also. You can not use different password for router log in and wireless security key. If you change any wireless settings on the router setup page, Cisco connect will stop working.
At the end you will you Cisco connect screen on your computer with 4 different options.
Computers and Devices: This option will show you how many computers or devices are connected to the router. You can also create Easy setup key to connect other computers to the network easily.
Parental Control: This is one of the features wherein you will be able to restrict the Internet access times for your children. Parental controls in Cisco Connect can be set up for up to five (5) computers or devices. If you forgot your Parental controls password and can’t remember the answer to your Secret question, the only way to change the password is to manually reset and reconfigure your router.
Guest Network access: If you always have visitors in your home that you allow Internet access, you might want to set up a guest wireless network for them. In the guest network, they will be able to access the Internet without connecting to your local network. In new Linksys EA-series routers, you can allow up to 50 guest connections.
Router settings: This option will let you change the wireless network name and the password. You can also find your wireless network key on this option. If you click on Advanced settings, it will open the setup page.
How to setup Linksys router without Cisco connect software:
I think Linksys router setup without installation software is really very easu. The only thing is that you will not be able to use Parental control settings feature ( and guest network access in some models).
If you are using Linksys E1000, E2000, E2000, E2100L router then you will need to install these routers using Cisco connect otherwise you will not be able to use Guest access feature.
For new Linksys EA-series routers and E-series routers like E3200, E1200, E4200, you can manage all the settings on the setup page of the router. So there is no need to install Cisco connect to use Guest access.
Like other Linksys routers, you can open the setup page by using 192.168.1.1 and change the settings manually.
I will suggest you to use Fix home Network‘s Easy Network Guide for Linksys router without installation software. This Guide will help you find the settings and also help you to setup your wireless router in case you need to reset it.