(row´ter) (n.) A router is a device that forwards data packets along networks. A router is connected to at least two networks, commonly two LANs or WANs or a LAN and its ISP's network. Routers are located at gateways, the places where two or more networks connect.
Routers use headers and forwarding tables to determine the best path for forwarding the packets, and they use protocols such as ICMP to communicate with each other and configure the best route between any two hosts.
Very little filtering of data is done through routers.
See "Common Router Settings" in the Quick Reference section of Webopedia.
See also Webopedia's "Did You Know... Routers, Switches and Hubs: What's the Difference?"