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Solved Should I use a router or wifi extender?

Dell Inspiron 17-7737 intel core i7 4500...
December 23, 2020 at 14:50:23
Specs: Windows 10, i5-9400/16gb
I have a she-shed located in our backyard that is approximately 100 feet from where my router/modem is in our computer room. It is a router/modem that is provided by Cmcst and it does not provide a reliable signal out there even though the router has a straight shot to it. I have a new laptop that I bought to do some writing with and I also want to connect to the 'Net with it. Now, I have a Cmcst wired box out there connected to my TV and it has an ethernet connection on it. My question is, should I use a wifi extender or maybe a router connected to the Cmcst box in the computer room to provide a more powerful signal out to the shed. I have had friends who use wifi extenders and they have told me that they are not very reliable. Maybe it's the environment in which they use them, or some other issue that keeps the wifi extenders from performing as advertised. All of my computers use wireless-ac adapters as well as the Cmcst gear. Any and all replies are greatly respected and appreciated.


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December 23, 2020 at 15:52:33
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I'm a bit confused about - Now, I have a Cmcst wired box out there connected to my TV and it has an ethernet connection on it.

Are you saying you have an internet connection there now (in the she-shed)? If not then what is that box - how is it fed and with what?

Your post seems to say that there is "no" internet in the shed nonetheless?

Presuming no internet ... and you say the distance of the shed from the house is 100ft... you really have two - possible three - options.

Run an ethernet cable (cat 5 or cat-6) between the shed and the router. This can be a cable (weather proof of course) tacked to the walls if there is continuous wall path between shed and house. If not then it could be buried (in conduit) about a foot underground...

You could use a directional wifi antenna system; which is something I'm not an expert on. Curt R and one or two others here are more familiar with that approach so hang about for their possible input.

If the mains power service to your shed is on the same circuit breaker box as the rest of the house... you may get away with homeplugs. These are adapters which plug into mains outlets, and when one is connected (via an ethernet cable) to the router, transmits the internet signal around the house wiring. Wherever you put another homeplug adapter there you can connect (via the house wiring) to your router.

Homeplugs have at least one - usually two these days - ethernet ports on them. So you get a better connection and more stable than using wifi - be it in doors or out in the garden or a nearby building.

These links may help you understand the homeplug system...

This company (based in Germany) ws the first to exploit the technology more than the original company who started them system. They hae a good explanation of how it all works - including a simple graphic display on their home page.

They are available in the UK and Europe - but not in Canada/USA; which is a pity as if they were in Canada/USA they'd take the market. There are equivalents from Netgear, D-Link, TP-link, and I think Belkin.

If you can use homeplugs (rather than runnng a cat5/cat-6 cable one way or another) then you can have an ethernet service in the shed an adapter in there; or even install a second router which also has wifi capability...

If neither running a cat-5/cat-6 cable or using homplugs is viable then it would likely be a directional antenna system.

So what are your options re' runnng a cat-5/cat-6cable between house and shed; and also using homeplugs?

You could buy a pair of homeplugs and test them out? Amazon allow you try and return of course...? Although even if they won't work out in the shed you'd likely find them useful indoors...

In an ideal situation... ethernet is superior to wifi. More stable, more secure - and "faster" (as in more bandwidth than over wifi).

message edited by trvlr

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December 23, 2020 at 16:43:35
Thanks for the prompt reply. I apologize for not being more clear in describing the setup. Yes, there is a cable buried coming from the house to the shed. I know it's not a really difficult thing to run some CAT5 cable from the Cmcst box in the shed to the laptop. But, when I tried to connect in a wireless manner to the laptop and realized that it was a challenge, I was determined to try and resolve the issues. I've always known that ethernet connections are more reliable than wireless connections and I think that that is the way I am going to go. Thanks for the tips about the 'Homeplugs' and their uses. Even though the power that the shed gets, gets it from the panel box in our pole barn which is a separate service from the house. I will keep that in mind for future reference. As always, you here at are as reliable as ever. You guys are the cats!


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