We have seen the age of limited data connections and 2G, and have survived the activate-only-when-needed 3G connections to finally have landed in the present – a world with affordable 4G mobile connections and more importantly, unlimited and high-speed Wi-Fi networks. What comes as an additional requirement to avail such Wi-Fi connections is routers, and owing to the rapid development of technology, now these come in all shapes and sizes too.
Go through this entire article to know more about how to set up, and use your new router.
Table of Contents
Purchase the Best Router for your Needs
The first step to any perfect product is identifying your needs for the same, and this applies to a router too. You need to know the range it needs to cover, the speeds your internet connection provides, and the kind of router (with/without modem) you need. Once you know about all of this information, buy the router that suits your needs and fits your budget. To get started, you can read about some of the best routers to buy in India right now in this article.
Set Up Your Router
To set up your router, follow these steps –
- Unbox and Check the contents: Before getting into the installation, check the product box for the router, power adapter and an Ethernet cable along with anything else that the router was supposed to come with. It is also a good idea to go through the quick set up guide that routers usually come with.
- Place the Router: Identify a central location for your router to ensure the maximum signal coverage and place your router.
- Connect the Power Adapter and Ethernet cables to the router: Once placed, connect the power adapter to the router and also insert the Ethernet cable from your modem (or any supported type of cable if your router also acts as a modem). Switch it on.
- Check for Lights: Once on, the router LEDs should light up/change colour to signal a working internet connection after which you can proceed to the set up.
- Connect your Router to a PC/Laptop using a LAN Port: When you have connected this, a new light might turn green on your router to indicate successful LAN connectivity. To set up your router, open any browser and type in the IP address of the router. Mostly, router manufacturers use either 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1 as their default IP address. However, this address is available at the back of the router and usually on some of the documentation too.
- Run the Setup Wizard: After entering the IP address and pressing enter, you might be prompted to enter a username and a password to access the web interface both of which would be available at the back of the router and on the documentation. Next, the router’s web interface opens up from where you need to run the Setup Wizard. The most common credentials are “admin” for user and “password” or “”(blank) for password.
- Enter Network Name, Password, Connection details: Follow the wizard step by step and you will be prompted to enter a Network SSID (name) and Password. You will be asked to enter your internet connection details like Type of Connection (like Static IP/Dynamic IP) and other details provided by your Internet Service Provider.
- Finish the Wizard: Go through all the steps and complete the setup wizard to successfully set up your router. Your router might reboot once the wizard finishes, do not turn it off while this happens.
And that’s it, you are all set up to use high-speed internet on your wireless and wired devices, powered by your new router.
Note: Nowadays, manufacturers also allow set up of a router from their dedicated mobile applications, or over Wi-Fi from a mobile or computer using the credentials provided in the box. To do it this way, connect to the network from the desired device and follow the steps mentioned above.
How to Optimise your Router
Now that you are set up with your router, you would want to get the maximum possible performance out of it for the best experience. Some tips to achieve this are as follows-
- Location of your Router: To get the maximum area coverage from your router, it should ideally be placed at a central location with open spaces and lesser barriers. However, it is always a good idea to experiment a bit with the location of the router to find the spot that works the best for you. If nothing works, you might also want to get a Wi-Fi range extender.
- Router Firmware Updates: It is always a great practice to occasionally check your router firmware for updates. These usually include bug fixes and performance improvements.
- Frequency Settings: Nowadays, routers come with multiple bands that offer a drastic difference in speeds and performance. For instance, the most common bands are 2.4GHz and 5GHz and while the former offers increased coverage the latter boasts of much improved speeds and stable connections. So, if you have devices that support both bands, do check your router settings for the optimal band.
- Update Drivers: If your network speeds are dropping only when it comes to your laptop, the problem might also lie in the device. A great tip is to check and update the concerned Wi-Fi drivers and hopefully, the performance would improve.
Now that you know how to set up, and optimize router performance, you are ready to start shopping and get a taste of fast internet connections for yourself. Once you have the router with you, follow the aforementioned steps to set it up and squeeze the last ounce of performance out of it.
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No, if your router comes without an in-built modem and you do not have an external modem in place already, you will not be able to access the Internet.
Without an internet connection, you can use your router to create a wireless network around your house/workplace using which you can share files and information without physically connecting or using data on those devices.
To some extent, yes, a router does have a major impact on the speeds you get from your network connection. However, it cannot amplify your speeds beyond what the ISP provides, for instance if your data plan is at 50 Mbps, and your router supports 200Mbps, you will not get speeds of more than 50 Mbps in any scenario.
Typically, a wired Ethernet connection from one of the router’s LAN ports would provide increased speeds simply because of better network conversion and reduced latency. However, in some cases, when the internet speeds are higher than what the LAN Ports can provide, the Wi-Fi option is faster.