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How do I connect my laptop to my wireless network?

Updated on July 13, 2014

Type of laptop

The first thing you will need to do is determine if your laptop has a built in Wireless LAN. Most laptops do these days however older models may not, this will be the first step in connecting your laptop to the network. If you laptop has a built in Wireless LAN then simply make sure it is switched to the ON position, it will then automatically scan surrounding wireless signals. You will need to enter the password for the network (SSID) you wish to join. Be sure to check if your are connecting to the correct one, especially if you are living in an apartment which may have many signals.

In the case of a laptop without built in Wireless LAN. The best thing to do to connect to a wireless Network is to purchase a USB wireless adapter. These are very small, and generally very easy to set up. Using this, you can be connected in minutes as long as you have setup your wireless router/modem correctly.

Make sure that the modem is powerful enough to reach all areas of your house of building. Some cheaper model get a very weak signal as soon as you leave the room, and others may have a poor signal between different floors. It is better to check before you buy. For most cases you may be able to pick up our neighbors wi-fi signal however you won't be able to access unless you have the SSID. SSID actually means "Service Set Identifier" and a password is always require to access the network. Never allow your system to be Open. This can be very dangerous and leaves you very vulnerable to unauthorized data access or even data loss.

Setting up the wireless network

Some router modems already have a wireless function which makes life easy. The only thing you need to do is to access the modem (usually through an IP address, then user name and password) and set the access password unless you want it OPEN (for anyone to access).

If you do not have a wireless router/modem, the easiest thing to do is to buy a separate wireless router which plugs into a spare socket LAN port in your main modem/router. This router will be simply an access point so you should be able to switch off DHCP (we don't need it to resolve IP address from your main router). This second router will simply plug into any spare LAN socket on the main router and transmit the signal. You will need to check the area size for transmission before buying the wireless router. If computers on different floors need to access the wireless router then you will require a more powerful model for the signal to reach through the floor. For a smaller area, a cheaper model will be fine.

Fake data hotspots

As we know, Hot-Spots are wi-fi access points which are usually free or require some registration to log in. However do beware of the fake ones going around, they are just there to steal user data.

Make sure the the Wi-Fi you are connection to is the business' real access point.

You can check the URL for the Https to see if your browsing is secure or not.

In places like Airports where there tend to be many fake Wi-Fi hotspots. Try to make sure that your device is not set to Automatic join Network. Even many shopping centers are starting to see these "Rouge" Open access Wi-Fi spots.

If you main PC at home is physically close to your modem, it is probably better and stable to use a physical connection with a normal LAN cable. You will obtain higher speeds at a more constant rate.

Devices such as Smart TV, Cable through internet should be direct connection if possible, even though these days they have the Wi-Fi option.

A Cyber Thief


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    • Hezekiah profile image

      Hezekiah 3 years ago from Japan

      do you mean your wireless access point? You just need to make it is not an open network i.e. users need to login before they can use. Modems will normally has a long password by default which can be changed.

    • profile image

      wanda 3 years ago

      how do I make sure my wireless is not used my the public