What’s a WiFi Repeater?

April 15th, 2012


If a user needs to increase the strength or range of their wireless network, a Wifi repeater could be the simplest and most cost effective solution. Wifi repeaters are ideal for users that are having Wifi connectivity problems due to being in a building that has brick walls, has multiple floors that are built out of concrete, or by being at site that is bigger in area than the 1,000 foot square foot range of a typical wireless router.

When a Wifi repeater is installed, it “listens” for any Wifi broadcasts from existing Wifi routers or wireless network devices such as laptops and tablets. Any signal that is picked up by the repeater is then rebroadcast. In order to install a repeater, it simply needs to be to plugged into a power outlet. It can then be logged into by a computer on the network so that any login information and passwords that are required by the existing Wifi network can be set up on the repeater. This essentially creates a wireless network that is a duplicate of the one being broadcast by the original router.

To maximize the range of the repeater, it should be placed at the limit of broadcast range of the original router while still maintaining a quality connection. This will effectively double the effective range of the wireless network. Since users are connecting either to the original router or the repeater, computers will have to disconnect from one and reconnect to the other if they move back and forth between the broadcast range of each device. Wifi repeaters do not have to match the particular brand of the original router, and can be configured to work with many types of network addressing, security and sub-netting setups.

Netgear Universal WN3000RP WiFi Repeater

April 14th, 2012

WiFi Repeaters enable you to expand your wireless network’s reach, without having to install additional Ethernet cabling or upgrade your current routers. With the Netgear Universal WN3000RP Wi-Fi Range Extender, you can expand your network’s perimeter past the range you’d get by simply upgrading your current wireless routers. In fact, Netgear’s Universal WN3000RP doubles your networks range and it’s compatible with wireless standards, b, g and n.

Setting up the WN3000RP
The WN3000RP is plug-n-play, which means you want have to install any drivers or applications to set up the extender. Like your wireless router, setup entails connecting the extender to your computer and accessing its software interface via a web browser on your computer. After launching the extender’s embedded software from your browser, you can enter your network’s security details manually or use the Smart Wizard utility to guide your through the brief setup process — the WN3000RP is compatible with WPA, WPA2, WEP, mixed mode security keys.

After you’ve set up the extender, un-tether it from your computer and plug it into any power outlet within range of your routers. The WN3000RP’s “link-rate” LED helps you find the best spot to place the extender. The WN3000RP also features an “ON/OFF” button, enabling you to save power when you don’t need the full girth of your wireless network — its stores your settings, so you won’t have to manually re-establish your connections.

Connecting Wireless Devices
The process of adding devices to your extended network is simplified, thanks to the WN3000RP’s WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup) button. It enables you to add computers or wireless devices to your extended network without having to enter lengthy security keys. Simply press the WPS button on your WN3000RP, and then press the WPS button on the device you’d like to add. You can also access the extender’s software WPS, “Push Button,” option from its software interface. The WN3000RP also features an Ethernet port, which provides you with the ability to add home theater device to your extended network via a hard line.

Summary
The Netgear Universal WN3000RP Wi-Fi Range Extender’s compatibility and convenient features puts it among the best wireless network extenders on the market — it supports all of the major WiFi standards and security keys. While the process of installing a range extender can only be so simple, the WN3000RP doesn’t do any thing to complicate the process.