routers

Can I run my computer and credit card terminal on the same ethernet connection?

Sandy from Santa Monica, CA

Episode 1166

Sandy wanted to run a computer and credit card swipe terminal on the same ethernet connection. Leo says that may not work since the credit card terminal needs it's own connection to the net. It requires a unique address. A router could help because it would route the traffic and it would be a different device address internally. Will it slow down her computer? Leo says a minuscule amount. Nothing that Sandy would notice, though. Any cheap router will work for this, but Leo likes D-Link.

How can I extend the Wi-Fi range between two houses?

Episode 1166

Matthew from Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Apple Airport Extreme

Matthew wants to know if he can bridge two Airport Extremes, put them 300 feet apart and still get a signal. Leo says it's no problem, except for the distance. 300 feet is a long way for 802.11,b,a,c, which max at about 150. 802.11AC, though, can go about 300 feet. One thing he can do is use a directional antenna from one to another. A new Airport Extreme, though, will work. Leo advises sticking with the same company's products to make the extension.

How can I make my router work better?

Episode 1156

Aaron from Tuscon, AZ
ASUS 3-In-1 Wireless Router (RT-N12)

Aaron just bought a Belkin router and he wants to know what he can do to make it work better. Leo says that he can make it more secure by turning off WAN administration and Universal Plug and Play. Both allow for holes in the router to let in traffic like gaming.

Another option is to get a router that can use open source firmware like DDWRT or Tomato. Asus is one such manufacturer.

How can I get rid of a hacker who's stalking me?

Episode 1151

Karen from Sun City, CA
Hacker

Karen is having an issue with an online stalker who has hacked into her computer and has been deleting her files and other things. Leo suspects that Karen isn't really being hacked unless she has incurred the wrath of someone who can do that. More likely, what may be happening is that she's got malware and she probably should format the hard drive and reinstall Windows from a known, good source.

Why does my modem kick my iMac off Wi-Fi?

Episode 1146

Jack from Garden Grove, CA
Apple Airport Extreme

Jack has an issue with his iMac getting knocked off the network using Wi-Fi. He has to reboot from time to time. Leo says that Apple has issues with Wi-Fi and it's a black art. Leo thinks it may be an issue with the cable modem. Jack should ask his cable provider if he can buy his own, and pick up an Arris DOCSIS 3 modem. Even though they gave him one, he's just renting it and it's likely a used one. He should buy his own, along with a router, and he'll get better results and save money on rental fees as well.

Are there advantages to plugging my external drive into my router instead of my computer?

Episode 1132

Mark from Chatsworth, CA
USB hard drive

Leo says this would just be different. Instead of being a local drive to his computer, it would become a network mounted drive. Copying files would go over the Wi-Fi network, which would be fairly slow compared to being plugged into directly to the computer. The advantage is that the drive would become accessible to other computers on the network, turning it into a NAS, or Network Attached Storage.

Do I need a router to use my phone as a hotspot?

Episode 1124

Laurie from Glendale, CA
Cell Phone Tower

Laurie wants to know if she needs a router to use her phone as a hotspot. Leo says no, the phone acts as a router. Her speeds will depend on how many devices she's using with that hotspot, and how many other people are using that tower. Laurie uses it because it's cheaper than paying for internet access at home. Leo also says that mobile phone operating systems are also more secure than desktops.

Do I need a router to use my Apple TV?

Episode 1124

Dennis from Arkansas
Apple TV

Dennis is looking to get broadband. He's got an AppleTV and wants to connect it to his router. Leo says that the best thing to do is request from the broadband company a modem only, and then use his own router. Then it's easy to connect the Apple TV to the router. The chatroom says that it may be necessary to port forward the Apple TV or DMZ it, but Leo doesn't think so.

How can I access the GUI of my router?

Episode 1123

Rick from Albuquerque, NM
Asus Router

Rick bought an Asus router and set the cable company's modem/router in bridge mode. He wants to know if he can access the GUI of the modem because he can't see it. Leo says that's because the Asus router is assigning the IP addresses as it goes. That's how it's designed. So he can't really do that. Leo also says he could alter it via the public address by turning on WAN administration, but that's a bad idea because then anyone could do it.