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I apologize for the crudeness of my MSPaint drawing, but please view my diagram of what I'd like to accomplish:

Proposed home network architecture

Currently, all devices are connected to 1 wireless router. I would like to make my own subnet, with a box in-between my subnet and the shared wireless router, so that I can learn about IDS, traffic analysis, etc. I was also given a cisco PIX firewall to play around with, and it'd be an added bonus if I could incorporate that into my network.

The reason for this proposed architecture is so that I can monitor all MY traffic, without seeing anything going on with my roommates' traffic.

Is it possible to have my desktop connect to the wireless router with internet via wireless card AND share that connection via the ethernet card, hooked to wireless router 2?

cable modem -> wireless router -> desktop pc connected wirelessly -> wireless router 2 getting internet from wired connection to desktop pc -> laptops connected wirelessly

The PIX can be left out for now, but I'm wondering if it could eventually be incorporated?

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migrated from Mar 10 '11 at 9:37

This question came from our site for system and network administrators.

Hi - I am OP but apparently didn't use correct email on my account! Anyways - thanks for answering mrisher. I have been running wireshark on local machines but what I am looking to do is have a machine that looks at ALL data from ALL of my machines. I'd like to run pfsense or snort or something like that. How can I run this in a wireless network environment? using WPA2, wouldn't my machine with snort only see data from its own connection? not my other laptops? THANKS!!! – user71274 Mar 11 '11 at 15:59

A few ways to answer your question: 1) if you want to monitor your traffic but not your roommates, you can do that locally on your computer using Wireshark. If you're trying to capture the traffic across a subset of all machines on a subnet, you can set filters in Wireshark to the MAC addresses or LAN IP addresses. That isn't the architecture you requested but may help you start examining packets.

2) If you want to create a second zone via a router, you could use the second router as a switch, so its traffic is all mapped to a single LAN IP address. Same deal on Wireshark.

3) The other part of your question was around sharing the connection, and for that, you can attach router two as a slave to router #1 (turn off DHCP on #2), or you can explore Wireless Bridges or Wireless Distribution Service (WDS). The latter two enable you to extend a network connection by using Wifi to link two routers, but then hardwire the computers into the routers. This feels like it might be pertinent.

For more info on #3, you can read about the hacked firmware for the WRT54G router at and

I'm not 100% sure I grok your request, but believe you can accomplish this by putting the second router on a different subnet

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