Wireless networks have become incredibly popular – so much so that virtually all new laptop computers have wireless network cards included as part of a set of standard features. As a matter of fact, customers will offer salespeople a strange, blank look if wireless networking is not included as one of the standard features. People love the convenience of being able to boot up the laptop and surf the net wherever they may be.
Wireless networks have become so popular and affordable that many people are now opting to include this convenience in their homes also. If you happen to be one of the thousands of people who choose to install wireless networking in your home, then there are a few things that you will need to understand about how wireless networks work.
One of the best and most appealing features of wireless networks is the fact that they are wireless. This makes installation incredibly simple and affords you the freedom to roam about in your home with your laptop untethered. Wireless networks eliminate the need for the wires associated with traditional Ethernet networks.
Installing wireless networking in your home is a rather painless process. Plus, in comparison to traditional wired, or Ethernet, networking, it is relatively cost effective. Many times, you can set up a wireless network in your home for less than a hundred dollars. The only disadvantage to wireless networks is that they are slightly slower than Ethernet networks. However, the average consumer will never even notice the difference.
Most wireless networking technology available for home use operates on what is called 802.11g technology. What this means is that the data sent over the network is transmitted at 2.4 GHz at a speed of 54 megabits. For non-technical folks, that means the data is moving pretty fast. Newer technology is currently in the works for wireless networks (802.11n), but it is still in the beta, or testing, phase.
Wireless networks operate by using either modulating radio waves or pulsing infrared light. They include a router that is hardwired to your Internet connection and transmits data via these radio or light waves. Your computer receives the information via either an internal or external wireless adapter, which acts as a receiver.
If you are thinking of installing a wireless network in your home, you will need a high speed Internet connection, a router, and wireless adapters for each computer you wish to access the network. Most basic wireless routers only have a range of about 100 feet, so if you live in a larger home, you may need to also purchase a range extender or repeater for your network. And that is pretty much it.
Wireless networks are easy to install and convenient. If you have not already decided to bite the bullet and install one in your home, you are missing out. The installation process only requires reading and following a few simple instructions. Do this and you will have a wireless network that the entire family can enjoy.