Before you begin messing around with a new home server it is important to understand a few things about how your home router operates.
Your router is typically your only device with a direct connection to the internet. All your other devices connect to the internet through the router. Webpages on the internet cant really tell the difference between your computer or someone else’s in your house. The router takes care of figuring out which of your networked computers requested what from the internet.
Each of you computers attached to the router is typically assigned an IP address from the router itself through a protocol called DHCP. These IP addresses are internal and only accessible on your local network. This is what allows you to just plug in your computers to your router and them work automagically. Your network settings are probably the same as this which is the default configuration for most operating systems. We will modify settings on the router so we dont have to change anything on any of your computers.
The Important Part of this Article: The problem with relying on DHCP to assign IP addresses to your devices is that some times the IP addresses assigned to a device will change. This is a problem for a device like the DNS-323 because we need to use the IP address for configuring BitTorrent software, using the IP address to connect to the DNS-323 etc.
The solution is a setting that can be found on decent routers (I own a Linksys WRT54-GL with Tomato Firmware) called Static DHCP. This allows you to create a setting on the router that will assign devices on your network an IP address that does not change. This is done by assigning a MAC address (the hardware identifier on network interfaces) to a specific IP address. It’s allot less complicated then it may sound.
Finding the MAC addresses of your devices is not difficult. To find the MAC address of you DNS-323 you must connect to it from the web interface. The MAC address can be found on the Status page. Once you have it, go to the Static DHCP settings in your router settings (it will be different than above but try to find it) and link the DNS-323 MAC to an IP address on your network.
Now you should be able to connect to your DNS-323 from an IP address that does not change every time the NAS is rebooted!