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I'm attempting to configure my router to forward a port to my Linux machine. The Linux computer has a static IP (192.168.0.185) Right now I'm just experimenting to make sure I can forward a port, so I'm using Netcat as a server.

I followed the instructions here www.portforward.com/english/routers/port_forwarding/Dlink/DIR-615/default.htm to forward a port. Then I got my IP address from www.whatismyip.org.

If I connect to my external IP (184.xxx.xxx.xxx) at the port I configured the router to forward, (using a Netcat client) it won't connect.

Some people are saying that in order to connect to a server on the same LAN, I'd have to connect to an internal IP (192.168.0.185) rather than my external IP. So I used this website http://www.canyouseeme.org/ which still says the port is closed. (I can connect to my Netcat server with other computers on the same LAN, so I know its a problem with the router or modem)

The modem is an EQ-660R, and strangely enough it has options for setting up port forwarding - which I think is weird because I thought port forwarding was the routers job...I followed the instructions here http://portforward.com/english/routers/port_forwarding/ZyXEL/EQ-660R/Echolink.htm to configure the modem to forward ports. And the connection still doesnt work...

So I'm not sure whether theres a problem with the router, modem, or both. Does anyone know what the problem might be? I'm also wondering if my external IP address needs to be static in order to forward ports? I would greatly appreciate any help. Thanks.

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Which port? Are you sure there is a service/program listening on the port? No, the external IP does not matter. What matters is that the router is correctly set to detect traffic and route it to the correct local system. If you only have one computer, you could configure “virtual server” instead of using port-forwarding (ie triggering). –  Synetech Feb 10 '12 at 0:34
    
Also, which version of the DIR-615 do you have? They differ quite a bit in some parts. –  Synetech Feb 10 '12 at 2:33
    
Which of the two devices is doing the NAT'ing? The router or the model or both? You may be double NATting without even knowing. –  billc.cn Feb 10 '12 at 9:49

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