Tom has four iMacs and each one is getting an error when connecting to ethernet, and can't connect to the Internet because of a "self-assigned address." But he can connect via WiFi. Leo says to go to the Network system preference pane and make sure that Ethernet is dragged to the top. Also, make sure it's using DHCP in the settings. One thing that may be causing the error is that the computer doesn't see the ethernet cable when booting up, and then gives the self-assigned address. It could also be the router itself.
Ben wants to know why he's having trouble connecting his TV with Cat 5 ethernet. Leo says to try a shorter cable. It may be a kink or a spool is causing connection issues.
Dave has an HP 6700 printer which keeps disconnecting from his network. Clearly, since Dave has replaced the router and modem, the culprit is the printer. He even tried it on a wired connection, but it still dropped off the network. So that eliminates Wi-Fi congestion as being the problem.
Louis is watching baseball games streaming online and sometimes the feed stalls. Leo says that's called buffering, and sometimes a packet drops and the feed will wait to see if it shows up out of order. Then it will insert it and move on. Sometimes, though, it just gives up and continues. There are some causes of this, including congestion from a wireless connection. But Louis can get a dual band router and use the 5Ghz band, or just connect to the router with an ethernet connection. The stream will be more reliable that way.
Matt is building a new house and has run cat 5 ethernet around the house. But should he also use a mesh router? Leo says he uses Eero at home, but here is one mesh system that's great specifically for Matt's situation: Plume. Plume sells tiny little access points that plug into the wall with an ethernet port. It's still part of a larger mesh network, but it creates very localized access from the ethernet.
Jeff wants to extend the range of HDMI to other parts of his house. But when he does, he starts to lose signal. What can he do? Leo says that Baluns are good for that. It stands for "Balanced/Unbalanced" and it will convert HDMI to ethernet and back to HDMI so that he can stretch it hundreds of feet with no signal loss at all. Jeff should check out Monoprice.
While Wi-Fi is more popular and prevalent than ever, it's still no match for a hardwired ethernet connection. But many of the new routers, especially mesh routers, don't have many ethernet ports built into them. Fortunately, if you have at least one ethernet port, you can expand that to as many as you need with a "Switch". Netgear makes some quality switches, but any unmanaged networking switch should work just fine. They all are very easy to use, as long as you get an unmanaged Switch.
Kevin needs to have more than two ethernet ports on his router and his mesh router only has two. Leo says he can get an ethernet switch or hub that can expand the amount of ports. Leo has one with 24 ports! They're all easy to use, and the best part is they're all the same. NetGear makes a good one. But any one will do.
Brian has a workshop that's about 70 feet from the house and he needs to extend his Wi-Fi network. Obstacles like doors and walls get in the way of the signal. What can he do? Leo says to string a LAN wire out into the ground.
Jeff is building a house and he wants to know the best way to wire up the house. Leo says that if he has bare open walls, he should put in conduit. That will future proof his home for whatever comes down the line. Then he can run Cat6 Ethernet, if he can afford it. Cat 5e is just as good, and more affordable.