A device that provides high-speed access to the Internet for two or more computers. Essentially, all routers today are broadband routers, and they typically include three or four Ethernet ports for wired connections to desktop and laptop computers.
The router forwards Internet traffic from the network to the cable or telephone company and switches non-Internet traffic between the connected machines. A "wireless router" includes Wi-Fi and is the most common network infrastructure in homes and small businesses (see wireless router
Routers Assign IP Addresses
A private network accesses the Internet with a public IP address assigned by the cable or telephone company. Within the network, the router typically assigns IP addresses to all the computers and devices (see DHCP
) and keeps them isolated from the Internet (see NAT
). Following are the configurations in which broadband routers are used. See cable modem