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Windows 7: Should I get a WiFi extender, an access point, or a better router?


19 Apr 2013   #1

 
Should I get a WiFi extender, an access point, or a better router?

So, I live in my parents' basement, and I'm positioned at the very front of the house down here. The router (a Linksys WRT54GL, stock firmware) is down here with me right on my desk along with the cable modem and moving them is not an option. I need the simplest solution possible, perhaps something I can put upstairs on the main floor.

My parents have a gazebo out in the back as shown below and they like to take their laptop out there and even though it functions, they say that the signal is just barely strong enough and so it reduces the performance noticeably as compared to being in the house (roughly where that chimney is, but on the main floor). I can see that because I'm literally at the front of the house in the basement (as close to the front as you can get, right about in the center and I'm facing West and so the router is right up against the wall). So, the router is as far away from the gazebo as is possible, outside of putting it in the front yard or something.



So as you can see, it's not exactly close! So do they need a WiFi extender, an access point, or should I get a better router? What's the best option without costing too much money?

Additionally, I don't know what's good or bad on the market, and so I need your help with that as well. I'd like to get them the best unit possible whatever that may be (extender, access point, or router) so that it does an excellent job and can keep working for as many years to come as possible. However, my parents said that they don't want it to be too expensive either. I don't know how much is too much for them, but I know that they probably wouldn't want the most expensive unit available either. Of course, that definitely depends on the prices out there too. I mean, to put it in another way: let's say that there's a better router that would solve this problem. That extender or access point can't cost more than that router. So, it has to be at a reasonable price. I'm open to getting a new router if the price is right and if it would solve the problem.

Again, we need something wireless that will go up on the main floor to be in the middle between the gazebo and the router. Either that, or a router that's known to be much more powerful than the WRT54GL

One final requirement: if we get an extender or an access point, then I would like it to have some kind of On/Off switch or button.

I thank you for looking!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Apr 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 X64 (Windows 8.1, Linux Mint, Windows XP and others in VM)
 
 

TwoCables, I'm not ignoring you, I just have little experience with that issue. Maybe this article can give you some ideas.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Apr 2013   #3

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by essenbe View Post
TwoCables, I'm not ignoring you, I just have little experience with that issue. Maybe this article can give you some ideas.
Yeah, I was wondering why you hadn't replied yet! hehe J/k

Thank you for the link to that article. I was in over my head when my parents asked about this. For some reason, I can't "get" anything that involves networking.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Apr 2013   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

You will need an 802.11b/g/n router to get increased range. The "n" router will also give increased WiFi speed.
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 Should I get a WiFi extender, an access point, or a better router?




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