You might have heard lot about WiFi routers or more commonly wireless router. They are getting popular every other day, and more and more people are buying wireless routers for their home or small offices. But what is wireless router?. In simple terms it is basic networking device which connects your computers, tablets, iPads and smartphones together and connect them to internet or other local WAN. We will learn more in detail later in this post.
Different Types of Wireless Signals
There are hundred different types of wireless technologies all around the world. Most popular among them are AM and FM radio, Mobile phones, TV signals, Satellite signals, WiFi and Bluetooth. These wireless signals are some of the most common signals, but what makes them different?
A WiFi signal from any type of source or device occupies a spectrum or wide range of frequencies: the rate at which a signal vibrates. If the signal vibrates at slow rate then this signal has low frequency. A high frequency signal vibrates at much faster rater. The unit that measures frequency is Hertz, which is the count of how quickly a signal changes every second. As an example, FM radio signals vibrate around 100 million times every second! Since communications signals are often very high in frequency, we abbreviate the measurements for the frequencies – millions of vibrations a second is Megahertz (MHz), and billions of vibrations a second is Gigahertz (GHz). One thousand Megahertz is one Gigahertz. The frequency your wireless devices connect to is based on a number of factors: the capability of your wireless devices, the model of your Network Box, and the physical location of your equipment.
One of the fundamental aspects of any wireless communications transmission system is modulation, or the way in which the information is superimposed on the wireless carrier. There are several ways in which a WiFi carrier can be modulated to carry a signal, each having its own advantages and disadvantages. The choice of modulation have a great impact on the radio communications system. Some forms are better suited to one kind of traffic whereas other forms of modulation will be more applicable in other instances. Choosing the correct form of modulation is a key decision in any wireless communications system design.
When building a wireless network, you will be using Wi-Fi technology, which has some unique characteristics that need to be kept in consideration. In general, there are only two types of wireless signal which is classified based on the frequency:
2.4GHz – A lower frequency, this is the more common Wi-Fi technology in use today. Many devices use it, so the signals can become more crowded and interfere with each other. It can pass through walls and windows fairly well.
5GHz – This higher frequency technology is used by fewer devices, and can sometimes achieve higher speeds because the frequencies are less crowded. It cannot pass through walls and windows as well as the 2.4GHz band signals, so the range of 5GHz technology is often shorter.
A wireless router or a WiFi router is a simple electronic device that connects various devices to your high-speed internet connection and allows multiple devices to get online without even having to be plugged into the modem. These electronic devices include PCs, printers, smart phones, gaming consoles, smart TVs and many more. Most WiFi routers in India have two USB ports, while few have a single USB port. Routers with a single USB port is designed to get input from either a printer or desktop computers. For wireless routers having 2 USB ports, one is designated for the printer and the other one is designated for either desktop or mobile external hard disk drive.
Some WiFi routers have a USB port specifically designed for gaming.
How To Create a Secure WiFi network
As more and more people convert their existing home networks to wireless the need to make sure that your network is secure has become essential. This is especially important for those who have confidential data. It is also important that your wireless network is secure, so others cannot misuse it.
In order to protect your computer network, the experts highly recommends that all home broadband users, with intentions of setting up a wireless network, purchase a top WiFi routers with enhanced security. These routers include 4 network ports for wired connections and allow the use of up to 254 wireless devices on your network.
The procedure for installing the Linksys router will differ depending on whether your DSL/Cable modem installation uses PPPoE. Point to Point Protocol over Ethernet (PPPoE) is an extension of the original PPP protocol used for dialup connections. PPPoE requires that the DSL or Cable modem user initiate the connection by providing a username and password. Older DSL and Cable modem connections do not use this method. In the procedure below, certain steps will only apply to PPPoE users.
Why Operate at Higher Frequencies?
The frequency spectrum is quite fragmented and dense. This encompasses one of the reasons that we are constantly pushing applications into higher and higher frequencies. However, some of the other reasons accounting for this push into higher frequencies include efficiency in propagation, immunity to some forms of noise and impairments as well as the size of the antenna required. The antenna size is typically related to the wavelength of the signal and in practice is usually ¼ wavelength.
This leads to a very interesting question. Typically, data is structured and easily represented at low frequencies; how can we represent it or physically translate it to these higher RF frequencies? For example, the human audible range is from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. According to the Nyquist theorem, we can completely represent the human audible range by sampling at 40 kHz or, more precisely, at 44.1 kHz (this is where stereo audio is sampled). Cell phones, however, operate at around 850 MHz. How does this happen?
The question, then, is why so many of your gadgets operate at 2.4 GHz, instead of the ~2,399,999,999 whole number frequencies below it, or any number above it. It seems almost controlled, or guided. It seems, maybe, a bit arbitrary. It seems, well, regulated.
A glance at FCC regulations confirms any suspicions. A band of frequencies clustered around 2.4 GHz has been designated, along with a handful of others, as the Industrial, Scientific, and Medical radio bands. “A lot of the unlicensed stuff — for example, Wi-Fi — is on the 2.4-GHz or the 900-Mhz frequencies, the ISM bands. You don’t need a license to operate on them.” That’s Ira Kelpz, Deputy Chief, Office of Engineering and Technology at the Federal Communications Commission, explaining precisely why these ISM bands are attractive to gadget makers: They’re free to use. If routers and cordless phones and whatever else are relegated to a small band 2.4 GHz, then their radio waves won’t interfere with, say, cellphones operating at 1.9 GHz, or AM radio, which broadcasts between 535 kHz and 1.7 MHz.
How to Improve Your WiFi Signal
If you’re having problems with your wireless network, here’s a few tips to help you improve the signal. Depending on your setup and circumstances, you might not be able to try everything we mention here. Don’t worry if so, these are only recommendations so just do what you can. It’s a good idea to connect your router to the master telephone socket (it’s usually the one closest to where the telephone line enters your property). This becomes more important if you have a poor quality or long line. While you don’t have to use the master socket, it’s where you’ll get the best broadband performance.
Your router broadcasts using high frequency (2.4Ghz) radio signals. Like all radio signals it’s possible for them to pick up interference. Microwave ovens, security cameras, Bluetooth devices, cordless phones and baby monitors are common causes of interference so if you can’t place your router away from these, be aware that you may have temporary problems when using them. If you notice problems while using a cordless phone, a phone that broadcasts on a higher frequency, (such as 5.8 GHz, ask a retailer about this) should stop this from happening.
Wi-Fi routers started as proprietary, paired systems operating on all manner of frequencies, only settling on a standard — 5 GHz — with the codification of 802.11a. Then the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers agreed that 2.4 GHz, with its wide channel selection and range/penetration/cost potential, was a safer bet. Today, some Wireless N routers can operate on both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands concurrently. Routers could function just as well at 2.3 or 2.5 GHz, but they’re not allowed. It’s the rules. The 2.4 GHz band, which runs from about 2,400 to 2,483.5 Mhz, is where routers have to live.