Amazon Sidewalk will begin operating on June 8th, and it's got the media sounding what Leo calls a scare tactic. What Amazon Sidewalk is, will be a wireless network for things like location tracking of tagged animals and devices and the white paper indicates Sidewalk will be private and secure. It uses Amazon Echo and Alexa to create a neighborhood-wide mesh network for being able to locate your devices.
Mark's home wifi modem has run out of ethernet ports. So he bought a five port gigabit switch, but nothing really works. Leo says that everything has to have a unique IP address, so a switch won't work. You need a router, which will assign unique addresses to everything you need to plug into your network. Connect the switch to the router's ethernet port, and then the router will assign the IPs as needed.
Here are the five things you need to do with a new router ...
1. Change the SSID and the default password.
2. Turn off WAN Administration (this allows administering the router from the outside)
3. Turn off Universal Plug n Play (UPnP)
4. Turn off WPS WiFi Protected Setup (one button log in)
5. Turn on Encryption and select WPA3 or WPA2. Do NOT use WEP. It's not secure.
Phillip is thinking about getting a Ubiquiti access point for his home network, or an eero setup. What router should he get? Leo says Ubiquiti is Pro-sumer gear, but eero is better for the average consumer. Either is great, but the latter is more expandable. Check out Leo's HOT review of Ubquiti UniFi!
Richard's old 2008 Mac will knock other devices off the network when he downloads something with it. Leo says to make sure each device has its own IP address.
Frank has been watching Leo's podcast This Week in Google (TWIG), where he talked about wiring his home with Cat6 Ethernet. Everything is wired for better streaming and no congestion. It also included home theater equipment called "Araknis" which enables a tech person to dial in and fix anything wrong or set it up. Leo wasn't a fan because he never got credentials to do it himself. So, he had it removed in favor of Ubiquity's Unify system. It works great.
Frank was thinking about getting the Araknis though. Leo says it's expensive. Leo recommends the Ubiquity UDM Pro.
Vip wants to know if he should wire his home with ethernet cable while he has the walls open. Leo says ABSOLUTELY. And use Cat6 while you're at it to future proof it. Hardwired is always preferable to WiFi and it'll be faster, have far fewer dropouts, and no congestion. Leo just did it himself. We're lifting a lot more data now with WiFi and IoT smart devices. There's a lot of congestion.
If you have a challenging wifi environment and can't afford to wire your home, Leo advises going with a Mesh router: eero, Netgear's Ubiquity, even Asus has gone mesh.
Amy is a second-grade teacher and they are getting ready to head back into the classroom for doing zoom calls to her student. The problem is, her wifi hubs keep dropping the internet signals. She's told her cordless phones are causing the problem. Leo says it could be, depending on what frequency the phone is operating at. 2.4 GHz is a very congested spectrum and cordless phones operate on that, so it could be interfering.
But Leo suspects there could be other problems as well.
Bob has the Orbi Mesh Router and has a second router for work. Leo says you want one router to be in charge. Leo says your cable ISP wants to be in charge because they use their router to provide WiFi to anyone walking by. Then your work wants to be in charge because it can control everything. In general, you only want one router handling all the DNS address assigning. Leo recommends putting the Orbi in Bridge Mode, and that will prevent both routers from fighting to run the network (called "double natting").
Roger has decided to build his own router as a project using an older computer. What would be the best operating system for it and how should he configure the LAN? Leo says that's a project that Leo has wanted to do for a while now. Steve Gibson has also talked about the DIY router project and uses PF Sense and the NetGate SG1100 with an ARM chip to run it. He likes it a lot and it's open source. It's the way to go. You could also use a Raspberry Pi.