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How to Prepare your Home before you Create a Wireless Network

There is nothing to compare with being able to access your network or the Internet from anywhere in your home. Once you’ve made the choice to go wireless, you’ll have to be sure to do the following:

1) Determine which wireless protocol your devices use. 802.11a, 802.11b, or 802.11g. Currently 802.11g is the most popular and the fastest, but you want to make sure that any piece of equipment you buy has the protocol you will be using.

2) Choose a single vendor for all your equipment if possible. This eliminates conflicts, allows you to learn only one interface, and you’ll only have to deal with one customer service representative if you have any problems.

3) Find the optimum spot for locating your equipment in your home. Keep in mind that the farther away you are from the signal, the less reliable the connection becomes. If you have a basement or a two story home, you might consider locating a wireless access point on each level. Walls, floors, ceilings, any other obstructions between you and the wireless device will degrade your signal. If you have a fairly large area of coverage, consider purchasing larger antennas which increase the signal strength.

4) When you setup your system, be sure to use WPA or WEP encryption. This setup will vary by manufacturer, but you want to make sure that you and your family are the only ones using your system not the neighbors.

You should also be aware that some of the cordless telephone systems use 2.4 GHz frequency range is the same as 802.11b and 802.11g. You may have some conflict. If you have done the above and are having trouble connecting, try unplugging your wireless phone and see if it makes a difference. It may require you to purchase one of the newer model cordless phones that operate in the 5.8 GHz range.

That should about do it. You’ll have to configure your wireless laptop or computer to use the same encryption and you’ll be wireless in not time.

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