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How to extend the reception of a wi-fi dongle

A Wi-Fi dongle is a USB device that plugs into a USB port on your computer or laptop. This device receives Wi-Fi signals from local wireless routers to let you connect to a wireless network for file sharing or Internet access. Depending on how far the router is from your computer or laptop, you may experience difficulties when attempting to work on a weak wireless signal through your Wi-Fi dongle. If you don't have the option of moving your computer closer to the router, you can move the dongle itself closer for an extended reception.

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Determine the location and distance of the wireless router. Though the range of the router's signal depends on the model of the router, repositioning it closer to your computer or laptop may help with reception.

Purchase a USB repeater or extension cable. These items are inexpensive and can be found in the computer section of retail stores or online stores. These cables come in a variety of lengths, so choose one that best meets your need.

Remove the Wi-Fi dongle from the USB port. Remember which port it was connected to for smoother installation.

Plug the Wi-Fi dongle into the USB port on the USB cable.

Plug the other end of the USB cable into the USB port where the Wi-Fi dongle was originally plugged in.

Wait for your computer to recognise the Wi-Fi dongle as a USB device. It should not need to reinstall new drivers since you are using the same USB port.

Position the Wi-Fi dongle in a location closer to the wireless router. Depending on the length of the USB cable, you may be able to extend your dongle's reception by many feet.

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About the Author

Erin McManaway holds a B.A. in professional writing from Francis Marion University, where she earned the Richard B. Larsen Memorial Award for Business and Technical Writing. She has worked in materials development, media and information technology in the nonprofit sector since 2006. McManaway has also been a writer and editor since 2008.

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