Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Extending your WiFi

Filed under: Fun,Fun Work,Geek Work,The Network Geek at Home — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:33 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Crescent

Well, more precisely, extending your wifi signal.

Not too long ago, I bought an antenna for my wifi router, in an attempt to broaden the range of my laptop in my own house. I could barely get a signal in my bedroom. Outside, on the back porch, I could only get a signal if I sat with my back to the yard! Well, unfortunately, before I could even test the antenna, my router fried and I had to get a new one. Luckily, the new LinkSys wifi router had better signal coverage, so I didn’t need the extra help.
But, if you still do, or just want to get a little bit more out of your wireless router, this article on ZDNet titled Expert tips on extending your home WiFi range has some good suggestions.


  1. How safe are the wireless connections? I’m paranoid about switching systems (from wired to wireless)so I was just wondering your input. I like to do my online banking, thus the paranoia.

    Comment by Jenn — 5/9/2008 @ 8:14 am

  2. Well, that kind of depends, Jenn. Now, keep in mind, I’m a little paranoid when it comes to this sort of thing, okay? So, my wireless network is only part of my whole, over-all network scheme. It’s in the DMZ, which is only partly safe. I could lock the whole thing down, but I don’t. Wireless is inherently less secure than wired networks, by the very fact that it’s a broadcast signal that can be intercepted much more easily than tapping into a wired network. Now, keeping that in mind, most people doing most things are probably going to be safe enough if they take the basic safety precautions described in the setup and configuration of the wireless router manual.

    I should do a whole post on this, but…
    Always change the name of your wifi router. Use at least the basic encryption. Keep the WEP key secret and make it as long and as random as possible. Change the default admin user name and password! Try to make sure you’re using secure websites for sensitive information. (Your bank is almost certainly using a lot of security on the website to make it as safe as possible.) And, as always, make sure to rotate your passwords regularly!
    Though, I have to admit, I mainly stick to wired networks for secure transactions. I’m old-fashioned and paranoid that way. 😉

    Comment by the Network Geek — 5/9/2008 @ 8:49 am

  3. Thanks Jim! I’m glad I’m not the only “old-fashioned” person out there. My friends make fun of my paranoia. When I use CC Clean I have it on 35 passes. Yep that’s paranoid, lol! 🙂

    Comment by Jenn — 5/9/2008 @ 7:08 pm

  4. Timely, that was.

    Comment by Alison — 5/9/2008 @ 11:15 pm

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