Everyone is stuck at home now because of COVID-19, "Corona Virus." Because of this bandwidth is being used at a higher rate than before.
Now you may be thinking to yourselves, "I have 700gig down, I have tons of speed." Well, that may be true but how many people on your block have the same plan and how many people are sharing the same line?
Here is a good example of what I'm talking about. When I build websites I have the choice between hosting plans. I can choose a private server so that I am the only website running on it. I can also choose a cheaper plan called, "Shared Hosting." This is a slower service due to the demand on the server as there are more databases living there.
*Note* We will be talking about hardline connections and WIFI connections.
1. WIFI - Go around your house and turn off devices that are clogging the channels or actually using bandwidth. These will be yours and your kid's Ipads and cell phones which are on but not being used. If they are not being used just turn them off. How do you find all the devices running on your router? Go to www.routerlogin.net for example and access your router admin. Shut it down from there if you like or find it in the house and manually shut it down. The kids are not only to blame here so let's not get too crazy. There are many other devices as well like WIFI printers, etc. If it is on and connected to WIFI you will find it in your router's admin.
2. WIFI - Relocate the router to a better more open location. Our company installs wireless access points so that you can leave the router in a closet. Times like these though we just need a quick fix. For clarification, you may have a router and a modem or a router/modem combo. Either way, the router is pumping out the WIFI signal and if you have it in a closet and it's not hooked up to a wireless access point it is being seriously limited. It may be an ugly option for now but we are just trying to get through these tough times. What I'm saying is, pull it out of the closet and hook it up in a central location. If you have to drag some coax or cat6 cable across the floor so be it.
3. Router / Modem - We all know that when we get a device up and running we tend to just forget about it. Well now is the time to log into the router and ensure that it is up to date. Pretty simple really, check the bottom of your device and find the login information. Make sure it is up to date and if there is an auto-update feature, turn it on.
4. Router / Modem - Restarting your device is always a great option. Computers and devices get glitches or "clogged up," and it never hurts to give them a restart. Don't go and factory reset the device, a simple restart will do fine.
5. WIFI - Now, first let me say I hate WIFI boosters or repeaters but tough times call for desperate action. If you live in the Dallas area we can install a wireless access point. If you are on lockdown and just want a quick fix, have Amazon ship you a booster. There are many different brands and types so I will leave it to you to get on Google and find the best match. Ugh, that's all I have to say about that nonsense. LOL
6. WIFI - Switch your device to 5 GHz vs 2.5 GHz. Normally if you have WIFI already running in your home you will see that you have two connections to choose from. The older 2.5GHz can travel a further distance and a 5GHz which has a faster speed. If you are closer to the router then always stay connected to 5GHz. Why is there a 2.5GHz option? Older devices still use it and like I mentioned it can travel further in the home because its penetration abilities are greater.
7. WIFI - Switch your router to a different channel. Devices connect to WIFI via channels on the router. This causes clogging so consider switching to another channel altogether. Again, you can log in to your router and find this feature. Google this topic so that you get a better understanding of overlapping channels and so forth. To test this switch the channel and see if you get more bars. Also, consider running a speed test to see if it helped. Do this until you find a channel that works the best.
8. Hardline - We have covered a lot about WIFI so let's talk about hardlines. Hardlines are the wall jacks you see around your house which are Cat5e or Cat6 lines going back to your router or switch. This is and always will be a faster internet experience than WIFI. If you have a laptop on your desk for work and it is running on WIFI consider getting a long ethernet jumper cable and plug it into the wall. At the same time, you will want to determine what is running on WIFI that can be running off a hardline. Look at the back of your TV's for example and see if there is ethernet access on the wall. Again, get an ethernet jumper and connect the TV in order to free up WIFI.
Once you connect the jumper to the TV make sure you go into the TV settings and ensure it says connected and not on WIFI. If it won't connect that means the wall jack is not connected to the router. This happens with older homes that have been retrofitted and may not be connected back at the router. This gets more technical and likely you will need an AV company to diagnose the issue.
9. Service - If you own your router and have been hauling it around from house to house it may be time to upgrade your router/modem. If you are getting 200, 500, or more gig down from your service provider and you have an old router that only handles 100gig.....you will only get 100gig. Go buy a new one or rent one from your service provider. There is no sense paying for something and not getting the full potential.
10. Service - Up your speed from your service provider. Bandwidth is cheap these days and with the number of devices in a home, you have to increase what you are getting in order to run them all smoothly. While you are on the phone with your service provider ask them if you have a data cap. If you hit your data cap the service provider will restrict your internet "A lot" and you will definitely notice.
Well, I wrote this in about 10 minutes and could have gone into much more detail but we are getting a lot of calls so I thought this was a good start for some of you out there. If you live in the Dallas area you can always shoot us a call. If not contact your local AV company and see if there is something they can do for you to make your home quarantine better. Stay safe out there and stop buying all the toilet paper. LOL
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