Five easy tips to improve working from home networks

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Home working: Tweak the settings

It is not always necessary to upgrade broadband to a faster fibre package to get better internet at home. One of the ways to get an internet boost, without buying any more equipment, is to make changes to the router’s configuration settings. This is the zero cost upgrade option for anyone who does not mind spending a bit of time delving into their home broadband router’s admin screens.

ISPs tend to use a sticker on the back of the broadband router they provide, which details the router’s default admin username and password and the default IP address for the login console. Every router will have a different console window, but they all tend to offer a way to set up and change settings for Wi-Fi and local area network (LAN) connectivity. The console can be accessed from a web browser using the IP address, but some manufacturers also provide a way to access the admin console via a mobile app.

On the LAN side of things, look out for how to setup quality of service (QoS). In effect, this causes the router to throttle the network bandwidth available on certain applications or devices, which leaves more of the available bandwidth for key applications.

With Wi-Fi, it may also be worth experimenting with using a different channel. Most home broadband routers will either default to Channel 1, or be on the “auto” setting. It is also worth ensuring that mobile devices and tablets connect to the 5GHz Wi-Fi. This frees up the 2.4 GHz band for fixed Wi-Fi devices and the corporate laptop.

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