Safe Route Networks
Safe Home Internet for Your Family
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Q:  What is a router?
A:  It is the control center of your home network through which all of your devices access the internet.  When configured properly, a capable router can control what device connects to the network and when, but not all routers have the same capabilities.  Some routers may also be capable of working with a 3rd party DNS service that put you in control of internet content blocking for all devices on your network.

Q:  What does "DNS" stand for?
A:  Domain Name Server

Q:  What is a Domain Name Server?
A:  It is a program that translates a Domain Name (i.e. into an IP address (i.e.

Q:  What is an IP Address?
A:  "IP" stands for Internet Protocol.  The IP address is a number assigned by your router to each device connected to your home network.  The router uses this address to route network traffic to and from the internet or between devices.  On any given network, no two devices should have the same IP address.  Your router makes sure this does not happen (see "What is a MAC Address" below).  There is an analogous addressing mechanism on the internet side (WAN) of your router, which enables devices everywhere to connect using the Internet Protocol.

Q:  Why is one Domain Name Server better than another?
A:  Presently, the Domain Name Server hosted by most internet service providers (ISPs) does not offer domain blocking controls.  Third party DNS services offer some degree of customization, allowing you to block access to certain content types for all devices on your home network.

Q:  What is dd-wrt?
A:  It is a sophisticated 3rd party router software package that is better than most OEM router software, improving the router's capabilities.  It is available for many existing routers and is even available as OEM software on some select models.  Please refer to and for more information.

Q:  What is a MAC Address?
A:  "MAC" stands for Media Access Control.  The MAC address is simply a unique electronic serial number for any device that connects to a network.  The router uses this unique identifier when it assigns an IP address to it.  Unlike an IP address, the MAC address does not change (not normally), so MAC address is the best identifier to use for setting network restrictions for a specific device.

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