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You Can't Get There From Here!

You Can't Get There From Here
by Gary Woods

A lot of us have wireless networks in our home or office. It's pretty cool to be able to wander around with your laptop and cruise the net anywhere in or out of your house. But sometimes it can take several attempts to hook up to your Wi-Fi Router.

The first thing you might want to do is to check and see if your network isn't clogged with other data. Are there any devices connected to your network that are streaming music or video from one part of the house to another? This kind of activity can make it difficult to connect. To see if this is the case turn off the streaming-media device temporarily. Then try to connect.

Another possibility could be Radio Frequency (RF) interference. You could simply be near a household appliance like a microwave over or a cordless phone that's on the same frequency as your router. The 2.4 GHz broadcast range where most household appliances reside has three non conflicting channels 1, 6 and 11. Most phones will have a channel button on them so try pushing it once or twice to see if your problem clears up.

The problem might simply be your routers signal strength. Wi-Fi cards typically place an icon depicting signal strength in the system tray that you can click on to view the available signal strength. Also, try moving the router to a central location in the home and place it higher up.

If you have any suggestions or questions for me please drop me a note at or see my column on the Internet at or call me at (805) 729-0910

Gary Woods is the Computer Trainer for the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors. You can hear Gary on the Radio at 1290 AM Monday 9-10 AM and he is a Broker/Associate at Home Realty & Investments, Inc