General Networking/Lan/Wan/Home Media Server


Jeff K wrote at 2014-06-16 20:29:00
I thought that you might appreciate an extra viewpoint.  This is "Jeff K" from allexperts.

1. You could have something wrong with your Internet connection.  Trouble-shoot this.  Connect a laptop directly to the router, and run a few speed tests (google speed test).  Then use wireless with your laptop next to the router and do it again.  This way you can rule out if it is your CONNECTION or your WIRELESS.  

2. Do not replace the XP machine.  That is just silly.  The fact that you are running XP has NOTHING to do with your issues.  I run XP on 3 of my many laptops and PCs.  It is superior in most respects. Windows 7 is rampant with bloatware and a memory hog.  

- ERGO ... don't change what isn't broken. Your issue isn't XP in the least bit and I'm going to keep using XP until I simply can't anymore. That will be a long time from now - app developers will continue to release 32 bit versions!

3. Download and install "malwarebytes", to find anything on ALL your machines that MIGHT somehow be suspect or part of the issue.  I doubt this is the case, but it's best to be sure about it.

4. Don't upgrade to an 802.11ac router.  Your PC won't support it, without also buying an 802.11ac usb or pci adapter and these routers are still "too new" - generation 1 and expensive.  802.11n is MUCH faster than your Internet connection.  Your current wireless network isn't your bottleneck.

5. If you can, configure your PCs, Media Servers, and Wireless router to use "ONLY 802.11n and not auto (might use the older 802.11 b or g if allowed - I've seen it happen!).  Note: 2.4 GHz only has 3 discrete channels: 1, 6, and 11 and is also used by bluetooth, cordless phones and even microwave ovens.  Try and pick a channel that isn't being used by anything else if you can.

6. Sometimes, wireless access points just kinda "slowly go bad", and need to be replaced. This has happened to me many times over the years, and I probably replace my access point every 1 - 2.5 years.  My latest is a refurbished Cisco/Linksys e1500 and it is so far the BEST that I have ever owned.  Very fast performance and easy to configure.

7. Align your routers antennae correctly in relationship to your PC and media server.  Essentially, wireless is kinda a big "donut", radiating in parallel to your antennae.  You - so angle your antennae so that the SIDE of it points toward your PC and media server.

8. Please don't buy dlink again - their stuff is usually 2nd rate.  Linksys/Cisco is good stuff and can be a very good deal at refurbished prices.

I hope this helps!


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Most general questions on LANs, especially home networks. Some admin and design issue.


I've been an IT Professional for more then 16 years. I've accumulated a larege store of knowledge that allows me to answer a wide variety of IT related questions.

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