airport extreme remote access

Posted on 2007-07-22
Last Modified: 2010-04-29
How do I set up airport express for remote access and how do I access it from a mac once I set it up?
Question by:villaveces
    LVL 4

    Accepted Solution

    Are you using a mac or a pc to set it up?

    Either way, it's easiest if you plug it in direct via an ethernet cable to begin setup.

    Using a Mac, open applications, scroll down to utilities, then open Airport Admin Utility (or Airport utility, depending which version and which Mac you have!)

    You should see fairly quickly an airport express box in the list called 'apple network' and then a number.
    click on this and then click configure.

    you should then be able to set it up.

    Be aware that if adding it to an existing connection, Internet sharing can be a bit of a pest depending on your other hardware, not all of it can share the internet wirelessly in the same way the airport express wants it to (WDS)

    get back to me if you're still stuck.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    Once you are set up, it should be available from the drop down list of wireless networks in the top right corner when you click on the AirPort icon.

    Expert Comment

    The airport extreme is set up and working perfectly. There are two USB hard drives connected to the extreme which I would like to be able to connect to remotely via the internet. Is this possible if so how do I configure the airport to do this?

    Assisted Solution

    With latest update, Airport Extreme is built to access your hard drive remotely even says so on their website, but you must have a Mac and MobileMe (99). With that option you data is sent securely over the internet and you dont need a static IP and occurs seamlessly.

    Alternatively, you can use the option below to connect remotely free.

    The two pitfalls is at home you most likely will not have a static IP. You have to use a service like dyndns as mentioned above, however there is still a problem. Airport Extreme/Time Capsule cannot update to those services when the IP changes. If you have an always on computer at home you can install free software to do that. But the average person who is trying to do this only has a laptop and that is with them. So if you are at work and you IP changes at home you have to wait til you get home to have it update to dyndns. The other pitfall is unlike MobileMe where your data is securely tunneled over the internet this option is far less secure. However, the instructions below let you change the default port to a random number which adds an extra level of security.

    If you have either a Time Capsule (which is basically an AirPort Extreme Base Station with a built-in 500 GB or 1 TB hard drive) or an AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBS) with an attached USB hard drive, you can share out the Time Capsule/AEBS hard drive and make it accessible via the Internet. To do this:

       1. Start the Airport Utility.
       2. Select your Time Capsule or AEBS. Make a note of the IP Address shown on the right -- you will need it later.
       3. Click Manual Setup.
       4. Check your "Connection Sharing" setting under the Internet Tab. The following tutorial is valid if your "Connection Sharing" is to "Share a public IP address", the normal setup for a home network. You will need to have a static IP address, or use a free dynamic DNS service. If you have a different type of "Connection Sharing," you probably don't need a tutorial to set up remote access to your disk; adapt this one as needed.
       5. Click Disks (at the top of the dialog box), and then click File Sharing.
       6. Select (check) the "Enable file sharing" checkbox and the "Share disks over Ethernet WAN port" checkbox. It is strongly recommended that you also set Secure Shared Disks to "With base station password" and Guest Access to "Not allowed"; not making these changes may allow unauthorized users to access your Time Capsule/AEBS hard drive.
       7. Click Airport (at the top of the dialog box), and then click Base Station.
       8. Enter a Base Station Password and verify it in the Verify Password box.
       9. Click Advanced (at the top of the dialog box), and then click Port Mapping.
      10. Click the plus sign (+) to add a new port mapping.
      11. In the Public UDP Port(s) and Public TCP Port(s) boxes, type in a 4-digit port number (e.g., 5678) that you choose. In the Private IP Address box, type the internal IP address of your Time Capsule or AEBS that you wrote down in step 2 (for example, In the Private UDP Port(s) and Private TCP Port(s) boxes, type 548. Click Continue.
      12. In the Description box, type a descriptive name like "Time Capsule File Sharing" or "AEBS File Sharing". Then, click Done.
      13. When you have made all changes, click Update.

    Your Time Capsule/AEBS will restart. Once it does, you are now ready to connect to the Time Capsule/AEBS hard drive via the Internet. To do this when your MBA is away from home:

       1. In the Finder, click Go > Connect to Server.
       2. Type in the correct domain name or external IP address for your network, plus a colon and the port number you specified in step 11. For example, "" or "".
       3. Click Connect.
       4. You will be prompted for your user name and password. The user name can be anything you like; the password should be the password for the Time Capsule/AEBS which you specified above.
       5. Click Connect.

    Voilà! You are now connected to your Time Capsule/AEBS hard drive from your MBA. You can access files, copy files back and forth between your MBA and the hard drive, delete files, whatever you want, as long as your MBA remains network-connected. The next time you go to connect, it should go even more quickly (especially if you save your password in your keychain, and if you add your home IP address/domain name to your list of Favorite Servers in the Connect dialog box).

    Note that the Time Capsule/AEBS will appear in the Shared section of your Finder's sidebar as a server, with the Base Station Name of the Time Capsule/AEBS as the server name.

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