CompSci student. Experimenting, but can't correctly configure my home network.

Jan 25, 2019
Hello all! First off I'm a student so my knowledge is minimal. Generally speaking I know enough to completely screw everything up and not enough to know how to fix it afterwards. However, instead of just reading the books, I wanted to experiment and build a interesting home network(looking for fun here, even if the end it doesn't really add functionality). So I'll start off with what I was trying to do, and list the specifications after:

Bought a used dedicated server. Would like to use this server first to host a website (maybe a blog to write about my experiences!, a resume to promote my knowledge). I have Ubuntu Server on this machine, and Apache is installed. The website works under.. some configurations. I'd also eventually run a distributed database on this machine...but one thing at a time. So that's my only goal now. I have a static IP from my ISP, and had everything working, but the internet on the rest of my network went from 170Mbps download to 0.2Mbps... According to my ISP when I bridged my modem, all traffic now goes into port 1 (weird that I still get 'some' traffic on the other ports). And he mentioned that most people put a router between the modem and the server. That made sense to me... firewall.

Now I have a router... but I'm getting confused on how I should be configuring this. So this is probably where I should describe my layout:

SaskTel Fiber Optic ISP to Pace Modem (with Wifi but moving away from using this)
IP: XX.XX.XX.128
Default Gateway: XXX.XXX.XXX.1
DNS: XXX.XXX.21.5, XXX.XXX.200.5

Modem Port 1 --> Airport Extreme
IP: ISP provided static IP
Default gateway: ISP provided
DNS: As on Pace Modem

Modem Port 2-4 --> Unused

Airport Extreme (old router I pulled out of storage.. perhaps this should change) with Wifi
Port 1 ---> PC (Windows)
IP: It currently uses the same ISP provided static IP, and this seems to work. Does it have to be?
Can I use DHCP. This static IP was intended for my webserver. I do have 2 that I can use
Port 3 ---> D-Link 5 Switch (Everything below this is planned, but not currently connected)
Port 2 --> Home Server (Ubuntu 18.04)
IP: ISP provided static IP
Default gateway: ISP provided
DNS: As on Pace Modem
- Currently the connection is not working

Airport Extreme will also handle a number of wireless devices (2 Phones, Nest Thermostat, Smart
TV, 1-2 Laptops, Echo Dot, garage door opener, etc.)

D-Link 5 Switch
Switch 1 - Airport Extreme
Switch 2 - Upstairs ethernet (to Range Booster)
Switch 3 - LinkSys Router (with Home Security System)
Switch 4 - Unused
Switch 5 - Unused

Note: I really think the problem I am having is in the Airport Extreme settings. So I'll describe those a bit here:
Base station shares a public IP address
TCP/IP is configured manually to ISP provided static IP (this seems weird for me... all 3 of my devices should not have the same IP, however I don't know what else to put in here). Also the Airport extreme has an IP address, and a router address... but it, itself is a router, so I'm not sure.
I also have port forwarding for web hosting configured (but it is using a 10.0... private IP that doesn't look familiar to me)

Really the only thing working for me right now, is the wifi on the Airport Extreme, and 1 ethernet port that makes it to this PC(port 1 on the Airport Extreme). And to some small extent the wifi on the Pace modem.

I have been working on this for weeks now.. but I am determined!


First, if your "modem" has 4 ports + WIFI is isn't a modem. It is a modem/router combo. That is an important difference that helps communicate what hardware you have. But, if you say your Airport extreme has the ISP provided IP, then you have (as you said) bridged your modem/router combo.

You can't have two devices Airport and server with the IP provided static IP address. That is one problem.
Jan 25, 2019

Awesome. Thanks for the clarification. Yeah I guess it would have a dual function. I was able to figure out how to get things going. I set my Airport Extreme to a static IP, and then configured it to give my server a private IP with the appropriate port forwarding. Then changed the config file for Apache2 and I'm off and running!