Networking

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

How can I connect two routers onto my network?

Jay from Providence, NC

Episode 1236

Jay bought a new router to add to his network but he's not improving his experience at all. Leo says if he's looking to expand his network, then it's a good idea to set one in bridge mode to just pass on the signal. It may be that Jay's DSL modem can't be a bridging router. Steve Gibson says that two routers handling the Network Address Translation will work fine. So Jay shouldn't do anything and see what happens. Maybe a simple reset will work. But Leo says putting one in bridge mode is best.

How can I extend my Wi-Fi range?

Episode 1234

George from Santa Monica, CA
Netgear EX6200

George wants to extend his Wi-Fi signal out to the front porch. How can he boost the signal range of his Wi-Fi network? Leo says a Wi-Fi extender or repeater is his best bet and it's always best to go with the same manufacturer as his original Wi-Fi router. So a D-Link would be D-Link Extender, NetGear with NetGear, Apple Airport Extreme with Airport Express. The idea is to place the extender midway between the base station and where he'll want it to go. This will enable him to double the distance of his Wi-Fi network.

Should I buy my own modem and router?

Episode 1227

Frederick from El Segundo, CA
Asus AC3200

Frederick has AT&T for his internet access. He's switching to Time Warner Cable and he's wondering if he'll get the 100 Mbps with the modem they'll be renting him. Or should he buy one himself? Leo says Time Warner will tell him what modems they support and he can then buy that. Leo recommends a DOCSIS 3 modem.

Should he get a modem/router combination unit? Leo says no. Use the router separately and daisy chain them together. He'll save a lot of money over the course of the year by just buying it himself. Leo likes the Arris modems.

Why is internet so slow on my desktop?

Episode 1224

Che from Orlando, FL
Dell XPS 8700

Che just bought a new Dell XPS Desktop and it's started to slow down drastically. He does a speed test, like Leo taught, and the desktop is much slower than his laptop. Leo says to try plugging the desktop directly into the router with an ethernet cable, and see if the speed improves. If so, then he's narrowed it down to the router. Leo says it could the hardware, but he could try reinstalling the Wi-Fi connection. There may also be conflicting Wi-Fi drivers at work between the hardware driver and the Windows driver. That can confuse Windows and slow things down.