Despite the fact each term has a specific definition, you'll find that in your everyday work, both are used interchangeably....
That's because I can call my gateway a router, but also my router a gateway, and this is correct!
I'll give you an example. Say you have two Ethernet networks side by side and one Windows server that's got two LAN cards, one connecting to each network.
So, if we put labels on each network, we could call the 1st network 'network A' and the 2nd network 'network B'. Both networks are Ethernet and use TCP/IP, which means no protocol translation is required between them. However, hosts in network A and B have a defined 'gateway' in their network properties. Does this mean that the Windows server is not a gateway ? At the same time, it's routing packets between the two networks, so isn't it a router as well?
As you can see, both terms are correct. If you want to be strict about the use of terms, then you might call it only a 'router,' but practice and experience will tell you its called a 'router' and a 'gateway'!
Related Q&A from Chris Partsenidis
Expert Chris Partsenidis offers guidelines for a smooth and successful PSTN to VoIP migration.continue reading
What SIP trunking basics should you know before you deploy? SIP trunking guru Chris Partsenidis explains what you need to know about SIP trunking ...continue reading
There are many new network security devices on the market today. Expert Chris Partsenidis opines on whether these can replace firewalls.continue reading
Have a question for an expert?
Please add a title for your question
Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.