Repeater wi-fi: how it works, connect, configure

Probably everyone knows the situation when in the far corner of the apartment it is not possible to connect to the home network - so a weak signal. Or when several people are sitting in the home network, which causes the download speed to drop significantly. Repeater WiFi-signal - this is a wonderful way to cope with such minor problems. What this is and how it works, you will learn from this article.

What is a repeater?

A wifi repeater, also known as an amplifier, repeater or repeater, is a device that significantly increases the coverage area of a network signal. It receives the signal from the router and ensures its further transmission. You just need to allocate an extra socket for it and understand the network settings. Note that you need to install the Wi-Fi repeater at the point where the main signal is still strong enough. At least, make the initial installation and adjustment in the active coverage area, and then you can move from the outlet to the outlet to try all the retransmission options and find the best for your room.

Principle of the repeater operation

Why do you need a Wi-Fi Repeater? The thing is that if you decide to go ahead and just increase the signal strength of the router so that it "catches everywhere", then it will not lead to anything good. The consumption of electricity will increase, the device will overheat, and as a result, everything will end in a breakdown.

Another sensible observation: as we noted above, often a repeater is called an amplifier, but this is not entirely true. The WiFi-repeater does not amplify the available signal. It only spreads it to a large area. Buying a repeater will not enhance anything and will not make your Internet super-fast, but rather, vice versa, slightly reduce the speed due to the creation of another signal propagation point. But this should not alarm you - we will consider the influence of the repeater on the speed below and explain in what cases it will be insignificant.

Do you need a repeater?

Before you go to buy a repeater, think: maybe there is another solution to the problem. It's not even about the increase in signal power mentioned above, but it's trite about where the router is in the apartment. The closer your device is to the geometric center of space, the more uniform the signal will be broadcast in all directions. Also check which way the router antenna is directed. For horizontal distribution of the signal, it must be directed upwards.

What does a Wi-Fi repeater look like?

There are different models of amplifiers. Some sizes and shapes are somewhat like a charger for a mobile phone, only without a wire. For example, the model in the figure below looks like a compact curved plate with a plug for the socket, LED indicators, a port for the Ethernet cable and a reset button.

There are models that in their form are not much different from the router.

Typically, the supply also includes an instruction manual, an Ethernet cable and a driver disk.

Simpler: WPS button

Most modern devices have a magic WPS button (or QSS on some models), which ideally is designed to make life much easier, but in real life, on the contrary, sometimes it interferes with the use of the network.

If both the router and the repeater have this button, then all you need to do is to first click it on one device, and then on the other. A few minutes of waiting until the repeater wy-fi and router each other will find, and voila - you can work. But there are recommendations where it is advised to set up the repeater manually by selecting a specific WiFi network in order to, first, reduce the number of failures in retransmission, and secondly, to protect yourself. WPS technology can be easily broken. Therefore, it is often advised to disable this mode altogether, if you do not often have to connect new devices.

Also note that sometimes the WPS button is combined with the Reset function. It all depends on the duration of the press: if you hold the finger on the button longer, then instead of turning on the WPS, restart the repeater, and all the settings you set will be reset.

How to set up a Wi-Fi repeater manually

For a more stable signal, it is better not to rely on WPS, but to register the entire configuration manually. Connecting a Wi-Fi repeater is actually even easier than setting up a router. First of all, plug the Wi-Fi Repeater into an outlet and connect to it via a computer using a cable or wi-fi. Then open the browser and enter the IP address in the address bar, you will find it on the reverse side of the repeater. The screen will be updated and the authorization form will appear. There you enter login and password: if you did not change anything in the settings of the router, then by default it is admin / admin. The settings page opens.

Next, you click on the repeater button in the upper left corner. You will see a list of all available networks. From it, you must select the network whose range you want to expand.

Here you can somehow call your repeater Wi-Fi or leave it with the factory name. Final stage - we enter the password from our wi-fay in the required field.

What happens with the speed of the Internet?

Sometimes there are doubts about the expediency of buying a repeater. The main argument is that the range of the signal propagation increases, but the overall speed of the Internet decreases. The practice of using repeaters shows that speed fluctuations occur: any additional link in the chain of "distribution" of the Internet will reduce the flow. However, the reduction, as a rule, is not so significant that it will strongly affect the signal power, and is largely determined by the technical characteristics of the devices in the chain. In other words, "buggy" and "slow down" the Internet will not be, if your device initially captures the signal.

A router as an alternative to a repeater

There is a popular belief that if you have an unnecessary but working router at home, it is not necessary to purchase a repeater of the WiFi signal. Many models are designed so that they can perform the functions of a repeater, the main thing is to correctly configure them. This is a longer process than setting up a regular repeater, but it's completely doable on its own. Note that it is easiest to establish a connection between two devices of the same manufacturer - there are more chances that the routers will notice each other and will run smoothly. The process of customization also depends on the brand.

First, the router that you intend to use as a Wi-Fi repeater will need to be connected to the computer using a wire. Then you will need to check the adapter settings (via the "Network and Sharing Center", which you can access from the "Control Panel"). For the device, an IP address of with a subnet mask of should be set.

Then, as with the repeater setup, you will need to drive the IP address from the bottom of the device into the address bar. Again, use the standard login and password - admin / admin. On the opened page you will need to find the tab "Wireless mode" and go to the settings. We are interested in the option "Enable WDS" - so we will create a network that will join the two routers. Also, you will need to change the IP address of the router, which will act as a repeater, so you have the opportunity to enter the configuration mode. You can simply change the last digit or add zero after it.

After that, you need to open a list of available networks, find necessary, select it and enter the password. By the way, do not forget to protect the network on the second router, so that you can also connect to it using a password. For this we go to the "Security Settings" and in the "PSK Encryption Key" we enter our password and save it.

Now the router works as a WiFi-repeater. You can disconnect from the computer and install it in the right place.

Check the connection status

After you set up a repeater or router in repeater mode, you need to check how the Wi-Fi repeater works and how well it catches the signal. It is advisable to check on all of your devices - laptops, tablets, phones - whether they see the network that the repeater is distributing, or continue to connect to the main router (for this you can prescribe different names in the settings). Also, check if in a suitable place you installed a wifi-signal repeater for the router, did you achieve your goal of improving the quality of the connection.

For this you can not just walk with the smartphone around the apartment and count the number of rods in the connection, as everyone usually does. Download to your device one of the special applications that can check the signal strength.

Note that if you need to expand the network coverage to a large enough territory, and even in different directions (for example, to the floor below and to the next room), then, most likely, you will have to buy two repeaters.

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