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by Ray DeCosta

Q. I have lost my router password and can't connect my laptop computer to it wirelessly. What can I do?

A. There are actually TWO passwords related to your router, one for the wireless Internet connection and another for accessing the internal router settings. If you have lost your wireless password, you will have to go inside your router to determine what that password is. Because you have probably lost that password as well, here are general directions for the entire procedure.

First, Google your router's make and model number along with the words "default password". This will lead you to the original factory-installed User Name and Password information along with the router's IP address (also called "default gateway") usually it's or

Using that information, type the following into your browser: (or whatever IP address is provided). You will see a login screen where you should enter the default User Name and Password you have already obtained. If the factory login information has not been changed, you will enter the router's Settings area. This information is generally similar between manufacturers and you should look for a "Wireless" or "Security" tab and then look around for the wireless Password (also referred to as a "Key" or "Passphrase"). Write it down and then enter it into your laptop's wireless connection configuration and go surfing.

Of course, if the router's password has been changed, this procedure won't work and you'll have to take an additional step. Using information provided by the router manufacturer's manual, determine how to reset the router. Usually, there will be specific directions about leaving the power on or off and holding in a reset button on the back of the router. After a period of time the router will revert to its original factory settings and the default User Name and Password determined above will allow you to access the router. At that point, you should continue on and choose a new wireless Password.

And, of course, this would be a very good time to write down the two sets of User Names and Passwords for future reference.

Published: Courier 7/1/12 - Page 4C