Need to know more about your current home network? Or you are planning to install a new system in your home?
This article may come handy whenever you need to make changes to your network or troubleshoot the Internet connection.
Our comprehensive guides provide essential information that every home network owner should know.
Read on to find out.
Wired or wireless network?
If wired connection once ruled the network, the rise of wireless is a step forward to faster and more versatile worldwide linking.
Using a wireless network, users experience a setup without the hassle of a wired system. However, Wi-Fi signal can only cover a certain area due to walls.
As a result, many still prefer a wired connection over a wireless one judging on their stability.
A corded system brings more consistent data transmission, thus ensuring the stability of your Internet.
You can easily gain access to ultra-speed connections that are up to 100 Mbps to 10 Gbps.
Nowadays, most internet routers are hybrid devices that feature both Wi-Fi connection and wired options.
The reason is people start using many devices having no Ethernet port, such as smartphones, gaming devices, and laptops.
What you’ll need
The process of setting up an Internet connection is actually quite complicated.
You’ll have to find the available providers at your neighborhood, select the suitable subscription, and have the tech support team to install an internet cable for your home.
However, we’ll assume that you’ve already gone through all of that and you are eager to finish the process yourself. That said, here are a few things you’ll need:
- Router (Usually a wireless one)
- Ethernet cable (cat 5, cat5e or cat 6)
- Ethernet-equipped devices (a PC or laptop)
Setting up your home router
Where to place your router?
To set up your home router, you’ll first need to find a suitable position for your router.
Ideally, it should be near the power source so you won’t have to bother about the wiring. Use something like a pair of screws or anchors to mount your router on the wall to conserve space.
The router should also be positioned in an open area with little blockage since the Wi-Fi signal may be weakened with walls.
If your router is placed in a close room, there is little chance for you to enjoy a stable Internet connection.
First, connect the provided internet cable to your router through the WAN port.
Keep in mind that different routers can have different names for this port. However, it’s still relatively recognizable as the only port with a different color.
The next step is to plug in the Ethernet cable to one of 4 (sometimes 8) other LAN ports. Connect the cable to your PC (or laptop) to start the configuration.
Note: if the provided internet cable can’t reach the place you’re planning to put your router, you can use an Ethernet Cable Extender to lengthen the range.
You can also do this if the Ethernet cable can’t reach to your PC. However, your cable length should be under 100m to ensure a stable data transmission.
Right after you connect the cable to your device, it could have internet access. However, your device still requires some minor configuration to start working properly.
Here is how you do it:
- Go to your PC and open the internet browser. Type in 192.168.0.1 and press enter. You’ll direct to the management panel of your router. Look at the bottom of the router; you’ll find the password and username for logging in.
- There will be a panel showing a list of different options that you can choose to adjust your router. However, just focus on a few of them. Start by going to the Wireless Network panel, and set up your Wi-Fi connection. Feel free to give it a name that you want. For the security options, you should choose WPA/WPA2 – Personal and give it a secure password.
- Enable the SSID broadcast with Mode set to Mixed and Channel set to Auto. After that, go to the DCHP panel and enable the DCHP server option. With this, you can connect to the Internet using both wireless and wired connection.
- Press the save option and reboot your router. Wait for the router to start properly and test the connection on both your PC and smartphone.
How to boost the Wi-Fi signal and range?
A common question for all Wi-Fi users since we all know how frustrating it could be when having an unstable signal. Here are a few helpful tips:
- Place it high in the center: Wi-Fi signals are radio waves that spread out and down, so you’ll have a better connection by doing this.
- Replace the antenna: The strength of your Wi-Fi transmission relies mostly on the antennas. So, by replacing them with better ones, you can get a broader range of the signal.
- Use an extender: It’s a useful device acting as a receiver and extender device of your Wi-Fi connection. The device receives your Wi-Fi signal from the router and re-broadcast it with better signal and range. It’s convenient in case you have a large apartment.
- Update router firmware: Sometimes, your wireless connection might not work as expected due to software problems. It would be reasonable to update your firmware to a better one.
About IP address
IP addresses are like passports; Internet users need their IP address to access the Internet.
If you have a small home network that uses 192.168, then it’s ip4v you’re using. It’s the first standard of IP address and also the most common. The most recognizable digits range from 192.168.0.1 to 192.168.0.255, which are the ones we usually use in our home.
IPv4 address consists of 4 blocks with each block having a value from 0 to 255. This allows up to 4 billion unique accesses originally intended to provide each person their IP address.
Note: If your IP ever starts with 169, your internet connection should be having a problem. It’s your computer telling you that the connection is having issues.
Dynamic IP addresses
Since there are now over 7 billion people on the planet, the idea of everyone have their IP address isn’t possible anymore.
As a result, internet providers start to distribute IP addresses dynamically. It means that users are signed up for the next free IP addresses instead of using the same one.
Another solution is the subnets, which separate IP addresses so for reusing purposes.
With the main IP address given to the router, Internet connection is then distributed to a smaller network.
However, we are still running out of IP address due to the demanding uses.
It’s when the IPv6 step in, it uses the hexadecimal system instead of the traditional binary.
This allows for a massive increase in the number of possible addresses. Hence, the problem of the shortage in IP addresses no longer exists.
Thanks for reading and see you in our future posts.