TP-Link port forwarding not working? Well, this read will help you solve the issue in minutes!
The port-forwarding feature essentially provides access to devices outside your local network to access a specific network port based on the project you’re engaged with.
However, not only with TP-Link but with other routers, port-forwarding may not always work from the very first attempt.
If TP-Link port forwarding is not working, verify that the server is accessible from your local network and correct the port-forwarding rule. Additionally, check if the WAP IP of your router is “private”.
To unwrap how all of this is done, continue reading!
How to Set Up TP-Link Port-Forwarding Correctly?
It’s straightforward to enable port-forwarding on the TP-Link router if you know the correct steps and don’t miss any of them.
This is why we’ve prepared a quick guide involving everything!
Here’s how to set up port forwarding on the TP-Link router:
- You must use a PC connected to the router’s network.
- First, enter the TP-Link router’s admin tool (interface).
- Open a browser, type “18.104.22.168” and enter the GUI.
- From the menu on the left, reveal the “DHCP” section.
- Click “DHCP Clients List” and note the “IP” and “MAC.”
- Go to “Address Reservation” from the menu on the left.
- Click “Add New” and put the “MAC” and “IP” addresses.
- In the menu, go to “Forwarding” and click on “Add New.”
- Insert the Port, IP address, Protocol, and Service tabs.
- Click on “Save” to finalize the creation of your forwarding.
Remember to add a secondary port-forwarding rule for both the TCP and UDP protocols based on the service.
Tip: To test if a port is open and port-forwarding is working, we recommend YouGetSignal, where you can immediately check if it’s still blocked.
TP-Link Port Forwarding Not Working – Instant Solutions!
Tip: Try all of the solutions in chronological order!
1. Verify Your Server is Accessible
The first step is to check whether the server you’re trying to provide access to is accessible from within the local network.
To test this, you must use a computer or mobile device connected to the TP-Link router via Ethernet or Wi-Fi, hence on the local network.
If you cannot access the server from within the local network, then even if the port-forwarding is done correctly, nobody from the outside would be able to access it, too.
Hence, to resolve such issues, you need to inspect the settings of your server.
Reminder: Is your server currently online?
2. Ensure Your WAN IP is “Public”
If your router’s IP is different from your public IP address, the port-forwarding will not work, so you must trace whether this is true or not.
The easiest way to verify is by checking whether the router’s IP is “public.”
You can quickly check the WAN IP address of your TP-Link router by logging into the control panel by using a computer connected to the network.
As we’ve described, you must type “22.214.171.124” into the browser to enter the admin tool. The WAN IP address will be displayed under the “Status” page!
Private WAN IP – Solution?
If your address is “private,” this means that there is another device connected to the router.
In most cases, this would be a modem, and to overcome this, you must open the same ports on your model for the port-forwarding to work.
However, if the service modem can’t be accessed by the user, you may need to contact your internet service supplier to assign a public IP address.
Note: A standalone router receives a public IP address automatically from the ISP!
3. Correct the Port-Forwarding Rule
It’s essential to ensure that the port-forwarding rule on your TP-Link router is correct and you haven’t missed setting the essential options.
It’s crucial to know what each setting is meant for and which port, IP address, and protocol you must use.
This is why we’ve prepared a quick guide to help you configure the port-forwarding rule on your TP-Link router correctly.
Here’s how to set up the TP-Link port-forwarding rule:
- Service Port – We recommend using PortForward.com, where you must scroll down and select the “letter” of your game, service, or server. This will reveal the port you must use for the forwarding.
- IP Address – You need to insert the IP of the computer you’re using to set up the forwarding.
- Internal Port – You may leave the internal port empty.
- Protocol – You will need to create a second rule later on, one with the TCP protocol and the other with the UDP protocol.
- Status – The status must be “Enabled” if you want your port-forwarding to work.
- Common Service Port – You may leave the common service port empty.
Reminder: Don’t forget to click on the “Save” button before exiting!
4. Soft-Reset Your TP-Link Router
If everything with the port-forwarding appears correctly set up and the configuration is correct, but you’re still facing issues, it’s time to restart.
The soft reset won’t erase any of your settings but will reboot the operating system of your TP-Link router and provide you with a fresh boot.
- To soft reset the TP-Link router, unplug the power cord for 60 seconds!
Then, you may turn on your router and wait for the “internet” light to start blinking, which means that access to your network has been restored.
When the system refresh is done, you may try to access your server from outside your local network to check whether the port-forwarding works.
Reminder: Double-check whether your port is accessible!
5. Temporarily Stop Windows Firewall
If port forwarding not working on TP-Link router, know that your Windows Firewall may block any connections from a different subnet.
Then, according to the set location, the difference will be divided, so it’s best to check whether this is causing the problem by turning off the firewall.
Here’s how to turn ON and OFF your Windows Firewall:
- First, click on the “Start Menu” from the Taskbar.
- Then, type “Control Panel” and enter the panel.
- In there, click on “Windows Defender Firewall.”
- Click “Turn Windows Defender Firewall on/off.”
- Turn off the firewall for both “Private” and “Public.”
- When ready, use YouGetSignal to test your port.
If the port-forwarding is now working and the port is accessible from outside the local network, then you must switch the mode of your network profile to “Private.”
Keep reading to unwrap how!
Note: Stopping the Windows Firewall is only necessary for a brief moment to test, and then we will provide you with a permanent and secure solution.
6. Switch to a “Private” Network Profile
If you were able to ping your port from outside your local network when the Windows Firewall is disabled, then you must switch from “Public” to “Private” network profile.
This is very easy from the Windows settings.
Here’s how to change your Network profile in easy steps:
- Click on the “Start Menu” in the Taskbar.
- Then, type “Settings” and enter the tab.
- Next, enter the “Network and Internet.”
- From there, look for the “Network Profile.”
- Finally, click “Private” and save the change.
When you’re ready, test whether the port-forwarding rule is working by attempting to ping the port from outside the local network.
If it’s working, you’ve successfully resolved all your port-forwarding issues, and you can now access your server from anywhere.
Reminder: Don’t forget to re-enable the Windows Firewall when you’re ready!
7. Factory Reset Your TP-Link Router
If nothing helps and your opened ports are not working, perhaps there is a system issue with the router, and a factory reset will help.
However, the factory restoration process will delete all the settings, port-forwarding rules, Wi-Fi SSID, and passwords, so back up anything necessary!
Here’s how to factory reset the TP-Link router in easy steps:
- Locate the Reset button on the TP-Link router.
- Info: The Reset button may be inside a pinhole.
- Acquire a needle or a paperclip to reach within.
- Press and hold the Reset button for 10 seconds.
- Release the button and wait for the router to reset.
When your TP-Link router is reset, you must configure everything from scratch, including your Wi-Fi, port-forwarding rules, etc…
Tip: We recommend performing a factory reset on a weekday so you can receive assistance from the ISP in case something goes wrong.
Whenever the TP-Link port forwarding not working, you must first verify that the server is accessible from your local network and correct the port-forwarding rule.
In addition, you need to ensure that the WAN IP is “Public” and test via disabling the Windows Firewall.
For more TP-Link guides and solutions, follow our blog!
Kevin has over five years of experience working in various Tech startups and providing Technical solutions. He has contributed to many Tech publications and websites.