How to Extend Your Home Wi-Fi Signal

How to Extend Your Home Wi-Fi SignalWireless networking in our homes and workplaces has become the new normal for the way we connect to the Internet. No longer are we limited to a wired connection and we now enjoy the freedom to roam our homes and offices with the Internet at our fingertips. One of the problems that many of us have experienced is the limited range that our wireless router provides. This article will attempt to help you rectify the situation and increase the range of your Wi-Fi connection.

One of the simplest ways to strengthen your wireless signal is to use a wireless range extender (aka repeater) to your wireless network. A repeater needs to be placed within range of your current router and will increase the range of your current Wi-Fi signal. I bought a Netgear Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender (refurbished) at Amazon for $39.99. the main reason I bought this unit was because it plugs directly into a free electrical outlet. This product did extend and improve my Wi-Fi signal to the master bedroom at the rear of our home.

There are some wireless router firmwares that you can try if your current router is supported. At DD-WRT firmware or Tomato firmware, you may be able to increase your router’s transmitting strength. However, not all versions of routers are supported, so check the list before trying to install either firmware.

Another trick to increase the transmission signal is to add a better antenna. I have done this on my D-Link router and it did work. I purchased the D-Link 2.4 GHz Omni-directional 7 dBi Indoor Antenna, also from Amazon, to increase the coverage in my home and to include my outside deck and it did work. You are most likely wondering why I needed an antenna and a range expander. I bought the antenna to expand the signal for my laptop systems. But now that my wife and I have tablet computers, we needed these to function in the bedroom as well.

You can also try a free software solution to determine where in your home or office a signal can be obtained. The free program is called inSSIDer, and it is very useful to locate the strongest signal in a particular location. The program can also assist you in determining the best placement of an antenna to obtain the best signal transmission rate.

Trying any of these methods should help you to increase the Wi-Fi coverage in your home and office.

Comments welcome.

Image Source: inSSIDer

Evil Controllers: Ultimate Gaming Controller?

Evil Controllers: The Ultimate Gaming ControllerMost aftermarket game controllers have slowly evaporated from the marketplace, leaving few options for those seeking a better gaming experience. Evil Controllers has continued to supply customized controllers by listening to gamers and taking that feedback and employing what the company has learned into new products. The company’s latest controller has been designed specifically for the Xbox 360.

Evil has submitted its latest design on Kickstarter in the hopes of garnering funds to continue its development of a better controller. The company plans to incorporate a rechargeable battery pack that will also extend game play between chargers for up to 10 hours. In addition, the controller will provide a more comfortable design, lighter weight, and be easy to install.

You will have a few options if and when the project is fully funded. You can either purchase a completely new controller or, if you recently purchased a new controller, you can purchase the back plate DIY kit. The DIY kit requires no soldering and comes complete with the lithium battery laid in place.

One drawback is that while the Evil controller can charge via USB, you cannot plug in the controller on its own into a PC. The controller will not function, since the internals of the controller are from Microsoft and require an adapter to function properly. However, the HDE wireless receiver can be found at the Amazon website.

If this project is fully funded, I believe that Xbox 360 gamers will be in for a treat, since they will not need to purchase those AA batteries any longer.

Comments are welcome.

Source: Kickstarter

Green Throttle to Turn Your Android Device into a Gaming Console

Green Throttle to Turn Your Android Device into a Gaming ConsoleThe introduction of Green Throttle, which comes with a simple application and an analog controller, plans to turn your Android phone into a gaming console. For anyone who owns an Android phone, Green Throttle promises to provide you with a mobile gaming experience, which the company claims will rival most consoles. In addition to great gaming, Green Throttle promises a great price, which may be as little as $49.95.

What Green Throttle offers is the precision control that a touchscreen cannot deliver. For anyone who has attempted to play a traditional console-type game on a touchscreen knows, the experience is lacking, to say the least. Green Throttle hopes to solve this problem and add true gaming to your Android phone.

But before you start to jump up and down, there are some hardware limitations. Your Android phone needs to be connected to your television for the best user experience, according to the company that produces the Green Throttle hardware. The company currently lists the Google Galaxy Nexus, HTC One X, Samsung Galaxy S III, and the Galaxy Note as functioning properly with the controller. In addition, your phone must be using Android 3.2 or above and you must install the application to get the controller functioning.

The biggest benefit of using an Android phone as a gaming console is the fact that most folks upgrade their phones more than they do their consoles. New Android phones are being introduced at a fairly rapid pace, making the Android phone the most purchased phone in the world. With this in mind, even if you may not have a compatible phone today, in the near future you may own a phone that can double as a gaming console.

But hold on! This even gets better, since I just read in the Green Throttle press release that Android-powered tablets will also be supported. The requirement to use a Green Throttle controller is that your tablet needs to be equipped with a video out connection. If your current Android tablet device doesn’t have a video out connection, you may wish to make sure that the next Android tablet that you purchase includes this hardware. As an example, both the 7″ Amazon Kindle HD model and the new 8.9″ Amazon Kindle HD tablet come with micro-HDMI connectors.

So there you have it. I personally believe that this controller and associated application could potentially change the way that we play games.

What do you think? Can you see a Green Throttle controller in your future?

Comments are welcome.

Source: Green Throttle
Source: Green Throttle Press

RAID Drivers – How To Install With Vista

If your computer came with a RAID controller and you wish to use this type of configuration, you need to either set the BIOS correctly and/or install the proper RAID driver for Vista. For those who have setup RAID drivers before you are most likely familiar with the procedure. But or those who haven’t done this before, this is the basics of getting RAID to work for you.

  • First get into your bios. [Usually pressing F1, F2 or DEL keys] which is done during boot.
  • Then find an option for your hard drives to enable Raid.
  • Next boot your Windows Vista DVD.
  • Choose a language from the list provided.
  • Click the Install now button and enter your product key.
  • Choose the correct version of Vista that you are licensed for from the list and click to accept to the license agreement.
  • Now, on the “Which type of installation to you want to do” screen, choose custom install.
  • If Windows automatically detects your Raid controller you are good to go.
  • If your RAID controller is not detected you will need to go to you motherboard manufacturers website and download the driver to a usb thumb drive.
  • Start the Vista setup by clicking the “Load Driver” button in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  • With your Raid controller recognized, click advanced drive options and choose your Raid configuration you would like.
  • Continue with the installation.

If you are still having problems you may wish to post your problem over at the lockergnome.com web site.

Comments welcome.

[tags]RAID, controller, vista, microsoft, install, dvd, assistance, lockergnome, [/tags]

Vista Install – RAID or SATA – No System Volume Found

In looking at some of the postings in the forums, there seems to be some problems for those who are trying to either do a clean or upgrade install, and who are receiving a error message stating something to the effect of ” unable to find system volume.”

This will normally occur when your motherboard supports RAID or SATA hard disk controllers and Vista does not support the onboard controller for your mobo. You will need to go to the manufactures website for the motherboard you have and see if the correct Vista drivers are available yet.

Once you get the drivers downloaded, save them to CD, DVD, or flash drive. During the installation you will see the option, To Load Drivers. select this option and install the drivers and the installation should proceed.

A few have followed these directions, yet the install is still a no-go. Seems like some drivers for certain mobo’s do not work correctly as of yet. Also, I have found in the past, that there is a possibility that the controller manufacture MAY support the proper driver from their website, i.e. Adaptec. Notice the word MAY.

Good luck.

[tags]vista, controller, raid, sata, drivers, [/tags]

Tech Gives Up On Windows – Installs Linux Ubuntu

I saw this article posted in one of the forums I belong to, so I followed the link to the posting to a article in the Inquiror. The person in the forum was poking fun at Windows and used this article to show how the world was switching over to Linux, one person at a time.

I read with interest how this tech was trying to install software from HP backup CDs because of Microsoft’s policy that prohibits vendors from shipping the original Windows disk. The writer stated: “This is where the pain began. Microsoft has a policy where the vendors can’t ship you a Windows CD so instead they have to send you a series of restore CDs.” I personally have not heard of such a policy – has anyone else? I always thought that the OEMs had switched to restore CDs to make it easier for a consumer to restore their system back to factory defaults.

But what I found of extreme interest was that the person setting up these computers ran into problems with setting up the controller in Windows because they hadn’t taken the time to go to Promise’s Web site and download the drivers. That would have seemed the simple solution. Even if a floppy wasn’t available, I am sure a USB port could have been used.

So we are then led to believe that Ubuntu Linux had the correct driver available, and, once installed, worked perfectly.

Is it just me, or am I missing something here? The story has some holes in it, and appears to be more of a bash against Microsoft and HP than a reliable source of a problem that occurred.

Comments and clarifications are welcome. :-)

[tags]windows, linux, promise, controller, driver, download, ubuntu[/tags]