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DMZ: what it is, what you can use it for and how to activate it in a D-Link router

In recent years, manufacturers like D-Link have made a significant effort to make their devices simpler, adding support for technologies like DLNA or UPnP. However, sometimes you still need to access the control panel to control your network. Today we will tell you everything you need to know about the DMZ.

From a technical standpoint, DMZ is a demilitarized zone located between the internal and external networks (normally Internet). This DMZ’s function is to allow connection between the two networks, while the connections starting from the DMZ can only go to the external network; this means local devices will never be able to connect to the internal network. The next graph will show you how it works.

In the particular case of domestic routers (like the ones we will talk about), the DMZ host is the possibility of setting an IP address with every open port on the router, except for those defined in the NAT section.

To access the DMZ configuration in a D-Link router, you have to access your control panel by entering your IP address into any web browser (192.168.0.1 by default) and then submit your username and password when prompted. Then go to the Advanced settings and then to Firewall Settings, where you’ll see the DMZ Host option; simply input the IP and check Enable DMZ to activate it (some routers may have to be restarted).

Setting up a DMZ Host can be very useful if you’re having problems with the configuration and you’re unsure if the ports are the problem. With this, you can leave the IP open so, once you’ve detected the issue, manually configure the ports you’re going to use in the Port Forwarding section.

It’s important to understand the risks of setting up a DMZ Host and use it only as a diagnosis tool. Without the appropriate knowledge and tools, you can leave your PC completely unprotected against many threats.

A bit of history before we’re done: the term “DMZ” was taken from the border between South and North Korea since 1953. Despite being a demilitarized zone, it’s one of the most dangerous places on Earth and it splits the famous parallel 38 from southwest to northeast.

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