Is resetting a router pretty much universal?
Enthusiast - Level 3

My ex doesn't remember his wifi password so my kids can't use their tablets while at his house.    For some stupid reason, he thinks I should know his password.    But, at the same time, admits he changed the password because he doesn't want me "hacking his private computer."     At first, I'm a bit flattered that he thinks I'm smart enough to do that.  Then I'm snarky because I'm supposed to be the stupidest person he's ever met, and then I'm just facepalming...but I digress.  

His router is not the original DSL router he had.   I honestly don't know if it's even a Verizon router, but I do know it's not the same one he used to have because it's Not the router I gave him from when I switched to fios from DSL and he broke the router he had during one of his narcissistic rages.    

But, again, I digress....

To the point.   I need my kids to be able to contact me over the internet on their tablets from Dad's house in case they need me because their dad is....well,...I'm sure you can will help me better protect them if they can send me video or audio of dad acting up.     But they can't because they can't connect to his wifi and he won't let them use his computer.   

So, is resetting the router so he can reset all his passwordsa solution to the problem and is resetting the router pretty much the same on any model router or are instructions specific to each brand.   

If it's universal, can someone give me the step by step instructions in plain, every day, don't know my head from my ......language so I can print them out and give them to him so he can follow it and get these kids online?  

Thanks so much.

Re: Is resetting a router pretty much universal?
Contributor - Level 2

I can only speak to you from my own limited experience.  My DSLrouter/modem is provided by Verizon and manufactured by Westell.  It's a Versalink model 7500, and you control it by directing your browser to address

Sometimes, but not always, the factory reset button is a little red button on the back of the modem.  In my 7500, it's a little hole with a red ring around it.  You shove a paper clip into the hole, and hold it there for about 8 seconds, and it resets to factory defaults.  Much easier, is to control it via the browser, as indicated above.  In one of the screens, there is an option to reset to factory settings.  I have done this, with fear and trepidation,  when things were not broken, just so I would have some experience with it when things did go wrong.

Resetting back to factory settings is a last resort.  If you do this, you may have to cope with 3 sets of credentials  (username/password or SSID/password).  I'm talking about modem control credentials, ISP access credentials, and wifi access credentials.  There are two steps to try first, as follows.

Sometimes, but not always, you can find out the wifi password by just turning the modem upside down.  There is a label on the bottom.  Sometimes, but not always, the default wifi password is printed on it.   It might say something like:  

WEP:  92574FF55521

That's the default password, if you set up security, but don't change any of the settings from the default.  It's a horrendous password, and that's a good thing. If you are very lucky, this password will get your kids onto the internet in their dad's place.

If that doesn't work, the next  easiest way to learn the wifi password is to go to the browser interface, provide the modem credentials when asked, and click on the button marked"Wireless Settings".  It will tell you all the current settings.  This includes the SSID and the wifi password, and a lot of geeky data.  This is how it works in my setup.  Maybe not in yours.