Networking

Wi-Fi routers, home servers, virtual private networks, and more.

How can I improve the WiFi in my house?

Jose from Burbank, CA

Episode 1406

Jose has issues with WiFi reaching to the back bedroom in the house. He gets practically no signal at all on his phone back there either. He's told it would be a major issue to move his base station to make it better. What should he do? Leo says that it's a common problem that is largely due to congestion from everyone in the neighborhood. So the key is to get an extender. But you want one that's from the same company. And it cuts your bandwidth in half, so that's not an ideal solution.

Why and I getting a DNS Server error?

Episode 1405

Tom from North Carolina
OpenDNS

Tom is having issues with Google's DNS server not responding. DNS is the phone book for the internet. It takes the URL and converts it to the unique IP address for that website. It will look in local memory first, then the router, and then the Internet Service Provider for the address. It can even go beyond that to the master servers that house all domain names and DNS lookups. If it can't find it, you get an error message that there's a kink in the chain. That could mean there's something broken on your PC, or even your ISP's servers.

Why do I get less bandwidth in my bedroom?

Episode 1404

Terry from Long Beach, CA
Luma mesh router

Terry got the Luma mesh router and he gets pretty good 100 MB bandwidth everywhere but his master bedroom, which is about a third that. He even bought another module and it didn't help. Leo suspects that instead of a daisy chain extension, it's more like a star pattern, and that could end up with some dead or weak spots.

(Disclaimer: Eero is a sponsor).

How can use my Internet of Things devices with a mesh router?

Episode 1404

Ken from Covina, CA
Eero

Ken has an Eero mesh router, but he's concerned because he has several "internet of things" devices and he hears that mesh routers don't like them. Leo says that is the current problem, and it may be that the devices aren't smart enough to handle the mesh way of handling the network. They're working on it and Leo says that a fix will some sooner or later. But in the meantime, hardwiring to the router may be the best solution.

Why is my Wi-Fi network so bad?

Episode 1392

Ted from Apple Valley, CA
Netgear Orbi

Ted is having trouble with his Wi-Fi. Leo says that's not really the fault of his network so much as it's just congested from everyone else's networks and activity. Also, Ted is streaming 4K video and that takes a lot of bandwidth. It may be that Ted's ISP just isn't giving him the bandwidth he needs to consistently get a good stream. On top of that, anything they publish gets cut in half when streaming via Wi-Fi and with the congestion and the bandwidth, that's quite a challenge to overcome.

How can I find out how good my Wi-Fi is in my house?

Episode 1391

Joslyn from Elizabeth, NJ
Plume Wi-Fi

Joslyn is getting ready to move and she wants to know how she can determine how strong a Wi-Fi signal is where she may live. Leo says DSL Reports will give her reviews on how good her internet is in any given area. But that won't tell her how good it is inside where she's going to live. If the building was built with a lot of metal, she'll have a hard time.