D-Link DIR-867 Review (Page 3 of 5)

Page 3 - Configuration and User Interface

The novelty of owning a D-Link DIR-867 is not its advanced firmware and features, but rather its ease of use for the general consumer. In fact, the DIR-867 has no advanced configuration features nor is it DD-WRT compatible. To start, simply power up your router. An internet connection is not required for initialization nor is a smartphone. All you need to do is navigate to the router's local IP at from your computer's browser. There is a mobile app available, but it only contains a subset of the features available in the web configuration interface. As such, I stuck with the web browser.

The above screenshot shows the main page of D-Link's DIR-867 after logging in. If there is a firmware update, it will prompt you automatically. The predominantly white interface is simple and practical. At the top, you will find a grey header bar with D-Link's logo and four buttons or drop-down menus, labeled Home, Settings, Features, and Management. The principle area has a network map, as shown in our screenshot above. Clicking on the elements will reveal further corresponding details in the bottom half of the screen. If you select connected clients, you can give it static IP addresses and enable or disable parental controls.

Under the Settings drop-down menu are four options, which includes Wizard, Internet, Wireless, and Network. Wizard is a step-by-step process for you to configure the DIR-867 wireless router. In Internet, you can configure your internet type, such as Static, Dynamic, PPPoE, PPTP, L2TP, or DS-Lite for both IPv4 and IPv6. Our screenshot above shows the Wireless screen. Here, you can enable or disable Smart Connect, configure Wi-Fi SSIDs and encryption key on both bands, and toggle Wi-Fi Protected Setup options. Both bands operate on the same SSID by default. Hitting the Guest Zone tab will allow you to configure a separate guest network for each band. This provides a second virtual wireless LAN that can run in access point isolation mode to limit user access to internet only.

The next page is Network, not shown, where you can configure local network settings such as the router's LAN IP, subnet mask, management link, local domain name, and enable DNS relay.

Up next is the QoS Engine page under Features. Other sections under Management include Firewall, Port Forwarding, Website Filter, Static Route, Dynamic DNS, and Quick VPN. As it can be seen in our screenshot above, you can limit the universal uplink and downlink speed as well as dragging connected clients onto a priority tree for quality of service. Again, this is as straightforward as it gets, although I doubt the usefulness of having a universal bandwidth limiter.

In Firewall, you can toggle DMZ, SPI IPv4, Anti-Spoof Checking, IPv6 Simple Security, and IPv6 Ingress Filtering as shown in the above screenshot. Clicking the IPv4 and IPv6 tabs will bring you to a page where you can set rules so traffic can be denied or allowed through local area network devices. In Port Forwarding, not shown, you can set virtual server and port forwarding rules. The remainder of the sections should be self-explanatory in accordance to its name.

Finally, we come to the Management menu. There are six sections under Management, which includes Time & Schedule, System Log, System Admin, Device, Upgrade, and Statistics. The Schedule screen shown above is where you can control device internet access rules. Unfortunately, like other features on the DIR-867, it is extremely primitive. This is not the worst part though. It is also not intuitive to use. Clicking "Add Rule" will bring up a weekly calendar that allows you to highlight certain time blocks. When a time interval is highlighted, various firewall and parental control features become operational. Every time you change a setting, it will reboot the router and you will have to wait 80 seconds, which is quite frustrating in my opinion.

Your password and CAPTCHA options can be changed in the System Admin screen. System Log is exactly what its name suggests: It is where you can toggle logging options and view previously saved logs. Device is where you can define access rules. The Upgrade section allows you to upload a new firmware manually or perform an automatic update.

The last thing I want to show is Statistics. There are four live graphs that show your internet, LAN, Wi-Fi 2.4GHz, and Wi-Fi 5GHz traffic speed, along with a sent/received table at the bottom to provide you with detailed statistics.

All in all, I found D-Link's web configuration interface to be clean and simple looking, which is good. The layout and graphics are basic with nothing distracting. All options are organized logically, and I never had an issue finding a certain setting that I want. However, the available features are primitive even for a consumer-focused product compared to competing offerings from Linksys and TP-Link. Furthermore, features such as scheduling are not intuitive to use, which is ironic considering how simple the user interface is. I am happy there is no requirement to install an app on my phone or have internet access to make the DIR-867 operational, but the company really has a lot of work to do to bring their web interface up to 2018 standards.

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Configuration and User Interface
4. Performance Tests
5. Conclusion