This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.
How To Video: Basic Wi-Fi troubleshooting tips
About Video Comments (0 ) Transcript

How To Video: Basic Wi-Fi troubleshooting tips

2:38 /

Are you having problems with your Wi-Fi connection? Molly Wood has a pile of tips to help you out.

Hi, I�m Molly Wood from CNET, here with a BUNCH of ways to troubleshoot a flaky WiFi connection. These tips might help you if your wireless connection was working fine, but all of a sudden you�re having problems. Or maybe you�re adding a new computer to the network and it�s not behaving. They apply to Windows XP or Windows Vista, and even though the menu options might vary a little, they should work across most versions of XP and higher. First, some very basic troubleshooting techniques. If you just started having problems and you don�t know why, try unplugging the router for about 30 seconds and then plugging it back in. Sometimes you just need a restart. Also, make sure the date and time are correct on your computers. Sometimes that tweaks the wireless security. I don�t know why, but it does. Next, make sure your security key is correctly entered. Maybe one of the kids changed it by accident. Check your computer to find out if the drivers on your wireless adapter need to be updated. That�s a common problem. Finally, check your router to see if it needs a firmware upgrade. If you�ve done all that but you�re still having problems, let�s move on to some trickier stuff. First, there might be too much traffic on your wireless channel. Download free software like InSSIDer or NetStumbler to check for wireless networks in your area. The software will show you how many wireless networks there are and what channels they�re using. So, if you see a lot on Channel 6, log into your router using its assigned IP address � you can find this online or sometimes with the router documentation. And just change the channel to something less crowded. If you run into problems on other channels, just keep switching. You should have 11 to choose from. While you�re in there, you may be able to boost the power settings. Every configuration page is different, but look for a power dropdown and change it from say, 4 to 10. If none of that works, look for sources of interference, especially if you live in a crowded environment, like an apartment building. Cordless phones are a very common suspect, and so are baby monitors. If you�ve got some, turn them off and try connecting to the wireless network. If it works fine, you�ve got your culprit. You may need to move the router far away from those sources, or if your phones are on the 2.4 gigaherz band, buy new ones that use 5 gigahertz band, or have DECT technology. Hopefully one of these tips can help you get back to happy wireless surfing. If not, check out our Advanced WiFi troubleshooting tips or, when all else fails, turn to Google. For CNET How-To, I�m Molly Wood, and good luck to you.

New releases

Swap your iOS 8 keyboard for these...
0:59 September 19, 2014
With iOS 8, you can use a different keyboard than the default. Check out these third-party alternatives.
Play video
2015 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat...
5:50 September 19, 2014
The 2015 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack has the muscle car power (and fuel economy) to back up its nostalgic...
Play video
Compact, budget Samsung Galaxy...
2:01 September 19, 2014
This wallet-friendly Android phone fits nicely in the hand, but has a few drawbacks you'll want to know about...
Play video
Line up for an iPhone 6, get a...
2:11 September 19, 2014
Why do people wait in line for days at Apple stores for the latest iPhones when they could preorder online?...
Play video
3D Pocketcopter crowdfunding soars...
5:13 September 19, 2014
This week on Crave it's your last chance to order a Pocketcopter that doesn't exist, run for your lives from...
Play video
The Blendtec Designer 725 is too...
2:33 September 19, 2014
A significant design flaw keeps us from recommending this high-end appliance
Play video
Genius hacker Walter O'Brien tells...
3:11 September 19, 2014
When Scorpion makes its debut on Monday night, it will bring hacking and computer security to prime time like...
Play video
The hidden features inside iOS...
2:04 September 19, 2014
Brian Tong shows you the features inside of iOS 8 that you might not know about.
Play video