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So you've been trying to play a video game over the internet. Or you've been running a VNC program on your home computer to access from elsewhere. The only problem is: it hasn't been working. You've tried everything: you've gone to one of those "what's my IP" websites and tried entering that in. You've gone to your IPConfig on the host computer and tried that, it worked on your LAN but not from anywhere else.

Well, here's what you didn't try: Port Forwarding.

This tutorial is being made using a Linksys Wireless-B router, but the concept is the same with everything.

First order of business is to find out which port the application is using. Usually it is in the instruction manual/readme or you may have to google it. For example, games of Civilization II run on port 4993.

The next step is to find the IP address of your individual computer, here's where you can run into a bit of a snag. Lots of routers have a DHCP server built in. These hand out IP addresses as computers connect to it, so no computers run into problems by accidentally having the same IP as another. So you have to make a decision, turn off the DHCP server and use a hard-coded IP or update the forwarding information periodically.

To disable DHCP:

- Enter the address (the IP of your Linksys Router) into your browser.

- You will be prompted for a user name and password, the default for Linksys is "admin", there is no user name

- You will see a number of "tabs" along the top of the page, choose DHCP and simply change the radio button from "Enable" to "Disable" and click the "Save" button

-Hard-code your IP using your Network Settings (not covered in this Tutorial)

Now, find the Forwarding page (it may be under the "Advanced" tab)

To set up the forwarding:

- Type the name of the Application into the first column

- The port range the the router will forward goes into the second column (they can both be the same number)

- The necesity for the two checkboxes vary, but it's quite alright to check both

- Type your IP extention (3-numbers) into the next column

- Make sure you click "Enable" or all that work was for nothing!

Click apply and wait for the router to get its bearings.

You should be all set. Have fun with your new, fully-functioning, applications!

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