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How to install WiFi repeater

Whether you are working from home or just enjoy various online content and gaming, very likely you have a WiFi home network you are using for connecting to the Internet. After all, browsing the internet free of wires is a convenience we enjoy now for several decades. But WiFi comes with some limitations caused by the nature of radio signals.

These limitations are showing their faces especially in these times when many of us work from home and simply must have an as fast internet connection and as stable as possible. Finding a way to boost the WiFi signal across the whole house is something many of us have to do. The best way to accomplish this is a WiFi repeater.

For many of us, these devices may be a novelty, and we are facing the question of how to install WiFi repeater? Various manufacturers have a different setup procedure, but they all follow certain general 

principles.

CHOOSING A WiFi REPEATER


Before you can start WiFi repeater installation, you need to get one. Figuring out the best location for your WiFi repeater is part of the installation process, and this can be influenced by the type of booster that you purchase. So deciding which one you will buy is the first step.

Generally speaking, there are two types, and they are most often called desktop and plug-in models. The desktop kind is a bit bigger repeaters, shaped very similarly to WiFi routers. They are intended to sit on top of a desk, or a shelf, and very often feature several ethernet RJ-45 ports, that can be handy in some situations.

If you have a lot of shelves and desks around the house, these can be conveniently placed near some power socket or plugged in an extension cord. But they are a bit bulkier and require a bit of space. Many also have wall-mounting holes on their underside, so that can be a potential way to save some space if you don’t mind a wire running down your wall.

The other type is plug-in repeaters which are very compact and plug directly in your wall socket. These usually with only a single ethernet RJ-45 socket, which makes them less convenient in some situations. For this type, usually, you don’t need much knowledge on how to install WiFi repeater. Besides their compact size, they very often come with a convenient wizard for the installation procedure.

Most often they are very compact, roughly the size of two decks of cards placed next to each other, such as PH0R 4, which makes them very space-saving, but also if you have pets they will not be able to push them off of a table.

How to install WiFi repeater is very similar for both of these types, so let’s get on with it.

HOW TO INSTALL WiFi REPEATER


Most of these devices come with simple to follow manuals on how to install WiFi repeater, a guide with steps you need to follow. To understand what is happening and what issues could happen during each step, it is important to have a bit of knowledge of how to install WiFi repeater.

Connect it and connect to it

The very first thing you need to know about how to install a repeater for WiFi is that the first step is to power it on. Whichever the type it is, you need to plug it in the wall and press the power button. After this, you need to connect to it for the first time.

Most modern WiFi devices have a WPS button for initiating WiFi Protected Setup. Some manufacturers call it QSS, WiFi Simple Config, PBC, etc. and when it is not marked with WPS it can have a pictogram similar to the “refresh” function in many programs, with two curved arrows pointing in different directions.

Pressing it will allow you to connect to the repeater with your phone, tablet, or PC; without knowing the password or username. Depending on the exact model of extender, your phone or PC may instantly get connected to it after pressing the WPS button. Otherwise, you will need to select the appropriate WiFi connection. The default name is a variation of the name of the model or manufacturer.

Some repeaters do not have a WPS button, thus you need to select the correct connection on the device you are connecting with to it. In such a situation you can expect that it either doesn’t require a password for the initial setup or that it has a default password that is “password”.

In case that this doesn’t work you will need to connect your device with an ethernet cable to repeaters RJ-45 port.

Network setup

Once you are connected to your WiFi repeater you need to perform the initial setup of the network so it can communicate with your WiFi router. Many manufacturers have dedicated phone apps for this setup and management, while others have built-in management software that is accessed through a web browser.

Thus, your next step is to either start the app or browser, depending on the model of your repeater. In the case of a browser, you will need to type in the address bar either “192.168.10.1” or a domain name from the manual. While your browser will warn you that you don’t have internet access, it will work because it is located on your repeater.

Most of the repeaters will present you a username and password prompts, where you need to type them. Almost always the username is “admin”, while the password is either “admin” or “password”.

After this, you can proceed to a guided setup, or will have to click on a button labeled with “automatic setup”, “scan network”, or some similar variation. Your repeater will scan the available WiFi networks and present you with a selection of them. Once you select the right one, you will need to enter the correct network password.

In general, this is the end of the setup and all you need to know on how to install WiFi repeater. But some repeaters offer you another step.

Finishing touches

Depending on the make and model of your repeater, you may have an additional step. Most repeaters will create a new WiFi network named as name-of-your-WiFi-network_EXT, or let you choose it yourself. This naming scheme is convenient and allows you to quickly see to which network you are connected. Some repeaters when you connect to them will keep connected even if your main network has a stronger signal.

Thus, you could need to manually connect to a better network depending on which part of the house you are in. Some repeaters have a mesh, roaming, or network merging mode that eliminates this need. Usually, it is off by default, and enabling is the final step of the setup.

April 14, 2021

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