While Wi-Fi networks offer improved versatility and flexibility over traditional Ethernet cable-based networks, the effective range of many wireless routers is not large enough for many bigger homes and offices. It is possible to extend the range of a wireless network to one kilometre and beyond with the use of additional networking hardware. Network repeaters, omni directional antennas and additional wireless routers are capable of allowing the Wi-Fi signal to be extended over a wide area so that devices can connect regardless of where they are located in a home or office.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Wireless routers
- Ethernet cable
- Wireless repeaters
- External antenna
Install wireless repeaters between the wireless router broadcasting the signal and the devices connecting to the wireless network. The repeater works by recreating the signal produced by the Wi-Fi router so that the strength of the signal never decreases low enough to prevent devices from connecting to the network. While multiple repeaters can be positioned between the wireless router and devices that will be connected to the network, the speed of the network will be reduced by additional repeaters.
Configure an omnidirectional antenna to broadcast the Wi-Fi signal over a large area. The antenna connects via a cable to the port on the router occupied by the factory external antenna. While it is necessary to install the antenna outside, the signal broadcast will reach devices indoors and out. The signal provided by the antenna is much stronger than that provided via repeaters and capable of allowing devices up to two miles away from the router to connect to the network.
Connect multiple wireless routers to extend the wireless signal range. Once the amount of Ethernet cable required to connect the wireless routers is determined, the routers can be connected via the ports on the back of the routers. Depending on the broadcast range of the wireless routers used, it may be necessary to connect more than two routers.
Tips and warnings
- Ensure that all the existing networking hardware is configured to broadcast the strongest signal possible by updating the firmware for all the devices. Additional performance gains can be had by ensuring that all additional hardware added to the network is manufactured by the same brand.
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