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Better Wifi: Being More Independant

By on March 2, 2016 in Miscellaneous

I’ve been talking a lot about having a bit of freedom of location since I wrote my last article. It was something that grabbed me as a great benefit from working from home.

Working from home and earning a wage from home has some great upsides. However it can be a hard sell at times as people tend to focus on what they are giving up on. The fact that someone takes care of everything and sorts out everything except the work you have to do (in theory anyway) is something some people are happy with. Inertia is a powerful force to overcome.

That’s why I like location independence. It’s a massive upsaide of working from home. You can just as easily work from your yard, the nearby coffee shop or the beach.

network

Internet access is sometimes a bit of a limiting factor. If you need to be online all the time then this limits the places you can go which is why I recommend coffee shops, libraries and being close to home.

Why close to home? Well, if you’re lucky you can pick up the wifi signal from your home router in a nearby nice open space or cool area, like maybe the stoop of your apartment building . Or even a local cafe or shop you would like to hang at.

Usually it is not that easy. However, someone I talked to opened my eyes about what was possible. He liked to work in a nearby bar that didn’t have wifi but was within line of sight of his apartment. So he “boosted” – as he put it – the range of his wifi signal from his home.

A standard home grade router may only get you 100 feet of range. That’s not very much, but there’s good news. According to Wikipedia  signals from commercially available but modified  home-grade networking equipment can have a range of up to a mile! That’s very impressive.

There’s some interesting information online about people who have installed high gain antennas on their roof and connected it up to their home network. Or made their own parabolic antennas to improve reception for their wireless routers. That’s pretty hardcore.

For most of us though the possibilities are a bit harder. Some routers let you increase the signal strength through their configuration. For others you can buy an antenna that is better at directing the signal rather than sending it in every direction. It is simply a case of unscrewing the original antennas and screwing in new ones.

If you’re serious about getting maximum range then the best place to start is your wifi router. Some are better or more adaptable than others. If you want to experiment or start thinking about what you can do then this article has some good suggestions.

If you’re trying to boost your wifi signal to reach a particular destination you need to keep in mind that wifi operates roughly on a line of sight. Too many thing between you and your network and you won’t be able to connect. And directed antennas needed to be pointed in the right direction.

Those things said if you want to get out and about without worrying about wifi then get reading and good luck.

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