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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Jay is thinking of getting a new Apple Airport Extreme, but he also wants to use the DDWRT firmware. He's heard that it's more secure, and the Asus router he's looking at comes with it.
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.
Marie had someone set up her router, and she needs to get the Wi-Fi password to set up a new printer. Leo recommends taping a piece of paper with the Wi-Fi password to the router next time so she won't forget or lose it. She can reset the router by powering the router down or unplugging it, then pressing and holding the little reset button for about 10 seconds, then when she starts it back up she can configure the router. But this would require her to set up a new password and reset all of the devices connected to it.
Ron is buying his wife a new laptop for their anniversary and he's looking at a Lenovo which has AC Wi-Fi. He doesn't think his router can handle it, since it's pretty old. Leo says that routers do wear out and the AC router will give him better reception and speed. Every four or five years, it may be necessary to get a new router.