Surely all of you have heard about such a term as local networks. Local networks are everywhere today – with their help, document management is organized at enterprises, they help to exchange information between computers within an apartment (the so-called home network). Despite technological advances, the most popular local area network today is still a wired network. True, this is due to the reliability and stability of wired networks, but within an apartment or small office, it would still be preferable to use wireless networks. Networks built on Wi-Fi technology are mobile and economical. Judge for yourself – you don’t have to spend money on wires and their wiring, you don’t have to think through the location of cable channels, and such networks are almost invisible to the eye. A small box in a place inaccessible to the eye is still not a bunch of wires, right? Yes, and a rigid binding to the workplace can be avoided – there are no wires. That is why it is important to both connect Wi-Fi and correctly configure it.
Why do you need Wi-Fi?
Wireless local area networks use radio signals in their work, distributed by a special transmitter, referred to as an access point. Such an access point can be either a router with the ability to distribute an Internet channel via Wi-Fi, or any laptop. Moreover, it is not necessary that the access point distributes the Internet – it can serve as a switch that connects several computers, allowing them to access network storage. This approach allows you to organize the workflow in such a way that all data will be stored on one computer (network storage), and all other computers will simply have access to it.
Within the home, wireless LANs allow you to connect your computers, tablets, smartphones and media center to one network. At the same time, it is possible to organize the network in such a way that all data will be stored in network storage (an analogy with a small office). Only at home, media files are usually located in such storages, access to which is received by all devices within the apartment. The main difference between such a network and a wired network is that you can connect a much wider range of devices to the network – the same smartphones and tablets cannot connect using twisted pair (they simply do not have the appropriate connectors). Yes, and working with such a network is much more convenient, but the advantages have already been described above, so we will not dwell on this.
An approximate view of a local network built on a wireless data transfer protocol may look like this: we throw on / into a cabinet (underline as necessary) a router that supports Wi-Fi and network storage for a couple of terabytes. We set up the distribution of the Internet and the local network – and you’re done, now from any device that can connect via Wi-Fi, you can enter the network and use all its advantages.
As you can see, local area networks built on wireless technologies are an excellent option, which is an order of magnitude more convenient than a wired network. That is why it is very important to know how to connect Wi-Fi. Let’s try to figure out together what exactly are the ways to create a wireless connection and how best to organize this whole thing. After all, your comfort and convenience in work depends on it.
Router: set it up and forget it
The most common option for setting up a Wi-Fi connection is a local network using routers. Setting up such a network is quite simple, you need to connect an Internet cable to it and perform the initial configuration using a PC. This setting occurs as follows (further point by point):
- Internet connection setup. Here you have to choose a connection method, you can find it out from your provider, but most often it is PPPoE (connection with a login and password provided by the provider).
- Setting up a wireless connection. This is where you enter your access point name and security key. This key will be the password for accessing the wireless network. This is necessary to protect your personal data. After all, if you do not have a password, then everyone within the range of the network will be able to connect to it without hindrance.
- Save and reload. Everything is obvious here – you will need to save the current settings and restart the router.
As you can see, in order for the device to start functioning as a network segment, you don’t have to make any special efforts – it’s enough to set up the router once and forget about its existence. He will continue to lie in the place intended for him and ensure the stable operation of the devices.
In principle, these settings will be quite enough to ensure the smooth operation of the local wireless network. In the future, through a device with Wi-Fi support, you will only need to find a network that will have the name you specified and connect to it.
Summing up, it is worth noting that the option using a router is the best answer to the question of how to connect Wi-Fi at home. However, if it becomes necessary to organize a local network for a small office, then this option is also the best choice. This is based on the fact that organizing such a network requires a minimum of effort, and the result is perhaps the most optimal for all situations that do not require non-standard solutions.
Such a connection will be an ideal option in all situations in which there is no need to organize a stable local network that functions at any time, regardless of the connected devices. In this case, the access point will be a laptop, and the principles of networking in this case practically completely coincide with networking based on a router. To organize such a connection, we need to set up Wi-Fi on the laptop. To do this is quite simple, you just need to follow these steps:
- Make sure Wi-Fi is turned on. If so, then the network indicator in the taskbar should change appearance. A small note – further we will talk about operating systems of the Windows family. If it is disabled, the icon looks like a monitor with a wire, otherwise the icon looks like a network indicator on your phone – a graph with divisions that show the signal strength.
- If necessary, set up an Internet connection, make sure that it functions properly. In the future, we will need this if you decide to distribute the Internet through your laptop.
- Open Internet Connection Sharing. To do this, open the control panel -> network and sharing center -> change adapter settings. At this point, you need to select an Internet connection and open its properties (properties item in the context menu of the connection). We need a properties tab. In this tab, check the box next to the item about allowing connection sharing and select your wireless connection as the local connection. Then it remains only to apply the changes and you can close this window.
- Share files and folders. You can do this in the Network and Sharing Center (see above). You will need the item "Change advanced sharing settings". Disable "Password Protected Sharing" and give permissions to share and modify files.
- Open the Network and Sharing Center and set up a new Wi-Fi connection in the "Create Connection" item.
- After all these steps, your laptop will turn into an access point to which you can connect other devices that support a Wi-Fi connection. Please note that when connecting other devices to a laptop, you must specify static addresses in the same way as in the version with a router. The only difference is that instead of 192.168.0.1 the main address will be 192.168.137.1. And the rest of the addresses must be set by analogy.
Now you yourself have seen that setting up Wi-Fi on a laptop is not such a terrible process – if you wish, everything is done quite simply and quickly. In general, setting up a wireless network is a very delicate process and a whole book could be devoted to this topic, but for novice users, the functions described in this article will suffice.