HOW  TO  USE  MAC  FILTERING  TO  DENY  INTERNET  ACCESS

In this section I will teach you how to block internet access on a mobile phone, tablet and/or computer, using the MAC Filtering feature on the TP Link TL-WR1043ND Wireless Router, even if the mobile phone, tablet and/or computer has previously had access to, or currently connects to, the wireless network (internet connection).


The technical words MAC Filtering often put many people off from performing the actual functionality of MAC Filtering, which in this case is to deny a certain device internet access, but here, in the traditional Yoingco way, I will show you just how easy it is.

FIND  THE  MAC  ADDRESS

Before logging into the router's control panel (settings), you first need to check the MAC Address of each device you want to deny internet access, as well as other devices currently using (connected to) the wireless network (internet connection). In other words, you need to know all the MAC Addresses simply because you do not want to disable (deny) a device by mistake.

Without being too technical: A MAC (Media Access Control) Address is just a unique manufacturer code that is only generated for and given to one specific Network Adaptor upon production. So the network adaptor built-in to mobile phone #1 will have a completely different MAC Address (unique manufacturer code) to the network adaptor built-in to mobile phone #2 and tablet #8 for example. When a router wants to block a certain device from using the current internet connection, it looks at the MAC Address you have told it to deny and then blocks the network adaptor that has that MAC Address. This is known as MAC Filtering. You are filtering the network adaptors that can and cannot use the current internet connection.

Android - You can find the MAC Address given to an Andoid (Kit-Kat operating system) mobile phone for example by tapping on: SETTINGS >> ABOUT PHONE >> STATUS. You will see a heading called WiFi MAC Address, which shows the MAC Address in hexdecimal format - 00:1e:ad:32:54:4b.

OS X - On an iPhone (OS X operating system) tap on: SETTINGS >> GENERAL >> ABOUT. The MAC Address will be under the heading called WiFi Address.

Windows 10 - On a Windows Surface Tablet and on a Windows PC there are three ways to find the MAC Address.

METHOD #1 - On a Windows Surface Tablet you first need to be in Desktop Mode (press the HOME button). When you are in Desktop Mode: Tap and hold down the WiFi Signal icon, near the clock, until the menu appears and then tap on the OPEN NETWORK AND SHARING CENTRE menu-item to bring up the Network And Sharing window. From there, tap on the CONNECTIONS link - Example: Wifi (Cairns) - to bring up the WiFi Status window and then tap on the DETAILS button. On the Network Connections Details window that appears you will see the heading PHYSICAL ADDRESS. The number next to it is the MAC Address. The downside to this method of finding the MAC Address, which is also the same on a Windows PC, is that it only works if the device is currently connected to the internet.

METHOD #2 - A better method is to use the DOS Command Prompt - On a Windows Surface tablet the DOS Command (CMD) Prompt isn't on the desktop by default, so you will need to put it there first. This is done by holding your finger on an empty part of the desktop until a context (Options) menu appears whereby you then need to tap on: NEW >> SHORTCUT. Doing so will bring up the pop-up keyboard where you then need to type CMD into the Shortcut and press the ENTER keyboard key twice in order for the DOS Command Prompt icon to appear on the desktop.

With the DOS Command Prompt icon on the desktop, double tap it to bring up the CMD window. Now open the keyboard and type either ipconfig /all or getmac /v /fo list into the black DOS window before pressing the ENTER keyboard key. This will list the PHYSICAL ADDRESS (MAC Address) for the current WiFi Network Adaptor; as well as the MAC Address of the Ethernet adaptor for example.

MAC Address Filtering

Fig 1.0 - Type ipconfig /all or getmac /v /fo list into the DOS window to show MAC Addresses

On a Windows 10 PC the above procedure is the same - Bring up the DOS Command Prompt, as explained and exampled in the 'How to use the DOS Command Prompt' section (linked above), and then type in one of the above DOS commands. The DOS method gives the MAC Address of a device (device's network adaptor) regardless if it is connected to the internet (current wireless network) or not.

METHOD #3 - This method is just a variation on bringing up the DOS Command Prompt. You hold down the WINDOWS keyboard key, and keep it held down, while you then press the R keyboard key to bring up the RUN edit box. From there, you type CMD into the edit box before pressing the ENTER keyboard key (or tapping/clicking on the OK button).

On a Windows 10 PC you can also get the MAC Address of its installed wireless network adaptor by going to the START Menu, clicking on the SETTINGS menu-item, typing MAC ADDRESS into the SEARCH edit box, clicking on the CHANGE WIFI SETTINGS button/link and then clicking on the ADVANCED OPTIONS link. If you then scroll down to the properties section of the Settings window you will see the MAC Address for the installed wireless network adaptor.

MAC Address Filtering

Fig 1.1 - The MAC Address for a Windows 10 PC can be found within the Advanced WiFi Settings

At this point you should know the MAC Adresses for all your household WiFi capable devices for example whereby you also know which of those devices you want to deny internet access. In this example I am only going to deny internet access to my BUSH Android mobile phone, whose MAC Address is: 00:1e:ad:32:54:4b. To deny a WiFi capable device from having internet access via your current wireless network, begin by logging into your router's Control Panel (Settings pages).

LOGIN  TO  THE  ROUTER

Logging into your router's Control Panel is done by first typing the router's IP Address into internet explorer's Address Bar edit box (Fig 1.2 below) and pressing the ENTER keyboard key (or clicking on the ARROW/GO button). Doing so makes the router's login web page appear whereby you then need to type your router's User Name and Password into the relevant edit boxes. These details should be in the router's documentation (i.e. PDF manual), usually found on its accompanying Installation CD, and/or on the back of the router for example.


The default (standard manufacturer's) ip address for the TP-LINK TL WR1043ND control panel is 192.168.1.1, with a user name of admin and a password of admin or password. Most companies use 192.168.0.1, 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.2.1 as their ip address, with admin or administrator as their user name and password, admin or blank (empty/no password) as their password. So if you are stuck, try one of those combinations. Furthermore, Click Here for a list of default passwords associated with common router control panels.

Wireless Security Explained

Fig 1.2 - Type your router's IP Address into internet explorer's Address Bar edit box and then press ENTER

Wireless Security Explained

Fig 1.3 - Type the router's User Name and Password into the relevant edit boxes

After logging-in to your router's Control Panel (web page) look on the left side for a heading called WIRELESS or WIRELESS SETTINGS, normally located towards the top or middle of the left side panel. Underneath that heading should be a sub-heading called WIRELESS MAC FILTERING or simply MAC FILTERING, as well as a sub-heading called WIRELESS STATISTICS. In this example, using the TP-Link TL-WR1043ND Wireless Router, the heading is called WIRELESS and the sub-headings are called WIRELESS MAC FILTERING and WIRELESS STATISTICS; so I need to click on the WIRELESS heading first and then on the WIRELESS STATISTICS sub-heading to continue.

MAC Address Filtering

Fig 1.4 - Click on the heading called WIRELESS and then on the sub-heading called WIRELESS STATISTICS

Clicking on the sub-heading called WIRELESS STATISTICS lists the MAC Addresses of all those WiFi capable devices currently connected to this active (in-use) wireless network and therefore using its internet connection. In this example there are six devices, with my mobile phone's MAC Address (00:1E:AD:32:54:4B) listed among them.

MAC Address Filtering

Fig 1.5 - Click on the DENY button next to the MAC Address you want to deny internet access

To deny internet access to my mobile phone all I need to do is click on the DENY button next to its MAC Address (above). This will add my mobile phone to the MAC Filtering Rules, in this case the DENY rules, and therefore prevent it from using the wireless network and therefore its internet connection.

MAC Address Filtering

Fig 1.6 - My mobile phone now has no internet access because it is on the DENY rule

To enable a device again, and therefore give it internet access again, simply click on the DELETE link to remove it from the MAC Filtering Rules. NOTE: There are more advanced options on the MAC Filtering page, but here I will not explain them because in the wrong hands you could accidently disable the ethernet and wireless network internet connections for all devices.

If your router's MAC Filtering feature is switched off (disabled) simply click on its ENABLE button to enable the feature (switch it on). Once enabled, the router's MAC Filtering features can be used, to deny internet access for example, as exampled above.

Hopefully this lesson has taught you that while MAC Filtering is an advanced topic, some aspects of it can be used by an absolute beginner; if shown how to. So do not be afraid to experiment sometimes. I began my computer life through experimenting and reinstalling. In this case, even if you mess up, only the router will need reseting/reinstalling.