Old school, huh? Anyway, routing the internet to all of our Mac goodness is a D-Link DI-604 4 port wired router. One port feeds the Graphite Airport (more old stuff!), one port feeds the iMac (relatively new), one feeds a Lenovo Windoze machine (relatives staying with us) and one feeds an HP LaserJet 4M Plus (positively prehistoric).
Anyway, I found the way around the missing printer was to use the router to assign a fixed IP address to the printer via it's MAC address. No matter what got unplugged or reset, the printer was always at 192.168.0.150.
Fast forward to today when we came back from vacation (relatives stayed in the house) and the printer wasn't working. I found that the Static DHCP function had been disabled and the printer was being assigned the IP address ending in .104. The log shows the system had been restarted at about 4:30 in the morning on a day we were gone.
Is there any way the Static DHCP function would be disabled by anything besides somebody logging into the router (I left the default password in place, my error)? Power bumps, power being unplugged, etc or is the only way this would happen is by logging in and changing this or doing a reset to factory default?
Is there any way this could have happened from outside of our house? There is a cable modem between the router and the outside world.
I can't find evidence of a browser logging into the router (the history is gone before 1pm that day). I suspect a pre-teen trying to hack their way into the system in order to reset the Wi-Fi password (they have been cut off of using their gaming devices with the Wi-Fi for security reasons). Of course, hacking into the D-Link router won't accomplish that, but this particular pre-teen knows enough to be dangerous but not enough to actually accomplish what they want.
So- if you remember how these old D-Link routers can be manipulated, please let me know. I know something happened at our house while I was away, but don't want to wrongly accuse anybody.