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Boost Your Wifi At Home With These 8 Tips

Boost Your Wifi At Home With These 8 Tips

WiFi is an almost essential utility in today’s society. Everyone is connected to the web and it’s more important than ever to have that vital internet available in your house. Getting it to work well in your house may take some effort so here are some tips on how you can get WiFi to work better at home.

1. Buy a better router

WiFI Home

    I can’t tell you how many people I’ve helped out with WiFi problems that have had routers from the internet’s dark ages. Generally speaking, routers can last a long, long time and that makes it hard to justify upgrading them. What they don’t tell you is that newer routers have better range, stronger signal, and support for WiFi standards. If your router is more than five years old, simply giving it an upgrade will likely help fix many of your signal and disconnection problems.

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    2. Put your router in a better spot

    wifi home

      Setting up a router is much like buying a home. It’s all about location, location, location. If you put your router on the second story of a two story home then the basement is going to get terrible signal. Put it in the basement and the second story of your home will probably have low signal that potentially drops out. When you set up your router, identify which parts in the house need WiFi the most. If putting it on one side means the garage doesn’t get WiFi and your office does then that’s a sacrifice you’ll have to make.

      3. Get a router extender

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      wifi home

        There is equipment out there that can make your WiFi signal stronger. Here’s how it works. You buy an extender and plug it in between your router and the part of your house that doesn’t get any signal. Once it’s been connected it will take your router’s WiFi signal and amplify it in that area and effectively increase your WiFi range. This is a good solution for large or oddly shaped houses where a router may not get to everything. If you bought a new router and still have your old one, you can set up your old router as a WiFi extender. It’s a little complicated but it can solve a lot of wireless problems by pumping out a stronger signal to more parts of the house.

        4. Find the right wireless channel

          WiFi is broadcast on a channel. Usually there are 11 channels (1 through 11). On your Android or iOS device, go to your app store and search for “WiFi Analyzer”. Then connect your device to your WiFi and run the app. The app will tell you what channel you’re on and what channel everyone else in your area is on. Then, using your router’s manual (or Google), change your router to the channel where no one else is. If you’re on channel six and two other routers nearby are on channel six, you essentially have three routers broadcasting on the same channel. A good analogy for this is imagining what it would sound like if you tried broadcasting three radio stations on the same station. Changing the channel to an empty one will help your internet cut out less and broadcast further.

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          5. Move your router away from the interference

          wifi home

            Routers aren’t the only things casting a signal in your house. Microwaves, TVs, cordless telephones, cell phones, and practically everything else that makes a beep or a bloop can cause interference. The best (and cheapest) way to deal with this is to move your router away from any of these appliances if you have it sitting near them. I’ve seen people put routers in the entertainment stands right along with their game systems, set top boxes, and TV. That’s a really bad idea. Your router should be all by itself for best performance.

            6. Reboot your router on a regular basis

            When a router runs for long enough, it can do some funky things. It’ll cut out, maybe slow down a bit, and sometimes just do crazy things all on its own. The best way to reel in an out of control router is to unplug it for about 30 seconds every couple of days. It sounds tedious but rebooting it lets the system restart itself and freshen up a bit. Trust me, it works. One reason routers do go nuts is overheating, so make sure you dust it occasionally and don’t stack anything on top of it so it can vent hot air.

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            7. Update your router firmware

            wifi home

              There is a reason router manufacturers push out updates. It is to fix bugs, issues, and increase performance on their products. If they go through the trouble of fixing things, you should definitely go through the trouble of applying the update. Different brands of routers are accessed differently so your best bet is to visit the manufacturer website or consult your user manual to learn how to access your router settings on your computer. Once there, check for updates. You would be shocked how much a good, solid software update can fix things on a buggy router.

              8. Make sure your computer’s hardware is not broken

              A lot of times the problem isn’t the router, it’s the computer itself! Wireless adapters on computers and in laptops can go bad. If you’ve been tinkering with your router and you just can’t figure out the problem, check and make sure it’s not your computer. These days households have multiple devices that connect to the internet. If your computer is messing up, use your mobile device, tablet, or another laptop or computer to double check and make sure the internet is truly messed up. If everything works but one device, the problem may very well be that one device.

              The worst thing about WiFi is that it’s really obnoxious to trouble shoot a problem. There are just so many things that could be going wrong. Your internet service provider could be down, your router could be broken, your computer could be broken, there could be interference, or your router may just need a reboot. I once had a dog that chewed through a cable and I didn’t find it for almost two hours. Just remember that you’re not the only one who has trouble with WiFi connections. Even professionally trained network administrators get stumped sometimes. Just relax and keep at it!

              Featured photo credit: Ultra Downloads Wallpaper via wallpaper.ultradownloads.com.br

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              Published on September 20, 2018

              11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

              11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

              In today’s fast-paced and never-ending busy world, we are overwhelmed by tasks that need to be completed by tight deadlines. With so much technology it is difficult to find the right tools to help boost our efficiency. And, many tools get obsolete so its essential to stay up-to-date to know when you will have to make adjustments to these tools. Independently of where you work, there’s a good chance that you have to be working on a PC or a laptop.

              Do you are feel like you do not have enough time, or cannot accomplish much as of late? It is recommended to take a step back and look at the big picture. Also, you want to explore new and innovative ways to improve productivity.

              In this article, I outline 11 features and apps within the Chrome browser that can help you do just that.

              Minimizing Tabs

              Let’s face it we all have more than a dozen tabs opened on our computers. One neat trick to still keep most of them open is to turn them into pinned tabs. On Google Chrome you can right-click the tab and select “Pin Tab” option. This turns the tab into an icon enabling you to continue multitasking.

              Pinning a tab anchors the tabs on the left of your toolbar; a great benefit of the “Pin Tab” feature is that you can’t close these tabs accidentally since the “X” disappears after pinning them.

              Incognito Mode

              Google Chrome is a very easy-to-use and intuitive. But, Google does collect our browsing data; so to remedy this, you can use Incognito Mode. This feature does not keep your browsing or download history. You can enable or access it in three different ways:

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              1. Press Ctrl/Command+shift+N
              2. Select File Menu and choose New Incognito Window
              3. Download extension New Incognito Window

              This feature is very handy if you’d rather not have your browsing history stored and utilized for future advertisement or suggested pages.

              Save Webpages as PDF Files

              Have you ever browsed interesting or important information and then forgot to bookmark or save it in “favorites”, making it impossible to find again? Chances are you have done this on a number of occasions.

              Thankfully, there is an easy solution. You can save webpages as PDF files. On your keyboard, press control/command+p and you will be able to save webpages as PDFs.

              Open Recently-closed Tabs

              Ever had dozens of tabs opened and all of a sudden your browser shuts down? It has probably happened to all of us. You can easily recover all of your tabs using two approaches. Don’t panic if this happens because there is a workaround and solution for it.

              One is by pressing Ctrl/CMD+Shift+T.

              The other approach is to click on the three vertical dots on your browser and hover over “History”.

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              Solve Mathematical Problems

              Google’s Chrome browser doesn’t just search for relevant and updated information. It is also capable of performing some mathematical problems. Within the omnibox (Chrome’s address or URL bar), you can perform mathematical exercises.

              For example, if you are struggling with percentages you can search 20 percent of x amount and it will instantly provide a result. Pretty handy, right?!

              Play Media Files

              Are you frequently met with difficulties when playing or watch a video files? Well, once again Chrome comes to the rescue. You can can listen or play videos from all sorts of movie or music files (mp3, mp4, .mov, .mkv, .ogv, .webm, .wav, etc.) by simply dragging the file into the search bar.

              In addition, you can view images, PDF files and Microsoft Office files, too.

              Navigate Swiftly Between Tabs

              With all of those tabs opened comes great navigation responsibilities. Rather than clicking through every tab, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+Tab to navigate all of the different tabs. Also, you are able to navigate to the first tab by pressing Ctrl-1, Ctrl-2, and so on. If you want to switch to the very last tab, press Ctrl-9.

              Stay Focus(e)d

              Computers nowadays have awesome capabilities.

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              Sometimes we like to get work done, but let’s face it, we’re all human. We sometimes procrastinate by visiting a website we really like, or maybe take a break with watching a flick on Netflix, a video on YouTube or browsing Facebook.

              With Chrome’s StayFocusd extension, you can truly stay focused and get more done in less time.

              This extension naturally helps you stay more productive by limiting the amount of time you spend on websites. You can set the time and it will automatically block those sites after a certain period.

              Grammarly for Editing

              Grammarly is a must have, and it’s really a complete powerhouse. Grammarly helps you check your grammar and spelling for everything you write online.

              You can use it professionally or as a student, which will make the editing process much easier and more efficient. Furthermore, it can automatically check for typos when you send an email, type a Tweet, or post a Facebook comment. It’s like having your own personal copyeditor!

              Loom

              There are times that words in an email or written text in a chat app will just not convey the right meaning.

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              There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the same is true of videos.

              With Loom, you can capture, narrate and immediately share video recordings of your screen, which will help coworkers understand issues you are facing, or to easily convey an explanation on screen. Plus, with video you will be able to easily walk people through a process, and you can use it to create simple how-to videos.

              Chrome Calendar Extension

              No matter what your level of responsibility is at your job, Google Calendar is another essential resource to have at your fingertips.

              Specifically, you can have this extension added as an icon in the toolbar of your browser, which I highly recommend. Once you add the extension to your browser, you can check for upcoming events with a single click without leaving your current page.

              Final Thoughts

              Google Chrome has definitely evolved from its inception. As you can see you have a very powerful tool that comes as a free installation and is loaded with dozens of capabilities. The above listed Chrome apps can resolve some of the most common obstacles to your time management and productivity.

              Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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