The router's WiFi signal cannot fully cover all the rooms in your home? Often and unwillingly, the connection of your computer and all other devices in your possession drops and you are no longer able to establish a connection to the wireless network? If the answer to at least one of these two questions is affirmative, know that before giving in to the most absolute despair and trying to solve by trying to buy a new router you could try to cope with it by going to change WiFi channel. How do you say? Don't have the faintest idea what to do? Well, in that case don't worry ... I can explain how to act.
Before you can be alarmed and before you can think of the worst, however, I want to reassure you immediately about one thing. Although it may seem like a complicated operation to you, changing the router's WiF channel is a real breeze. All you need is just a few minutes of free time and a computer, a smartphone or a tablet in addition, of course, to the router on which you want to intervene. Nothing else. What do you say, are you ready to start?
Before explaining all the operations to be performed, however, it is good that you understand, in detail, why it may be useful to carry out this operation. Assuming that the most modern routers are able to change channels automatically by selecting the best one, sometimes it happens to encounter annoying problems in the transmission of the WiFi signal. The cause of this could be some interference generated by other devices, by the home or by other objects in the house and not. When such a situation occurs, changing the WiFi channel can therefore be useful to avoid encountering interference and, consequently, to optimize access and stability of the wireless network. Having made this necessary premise, let's take action!
Step 1 - Log in to the Router
For change WiFi channel in the router, the first thing you need to do is access the control panel of the latter. Then open your favorite browser (eg Chrome, Firefox or Safari), connected to the address 192.168.1.1 oppure all'indirizzo 192.168.0.1 and enter the username and password combination required to log into the router.
As for the login combination, keep in mind that usually the combination of username and password to use is admin / admin o admin / password but there are circumstances in which you need to use other settings (for example when you have taken steps to customize the access data to the router). If so, you can take a further look at the router's user manual to find out the right combination. If you have problems identifying the router username and password you can consult my tutorial on how to find the modem and router password.
Find the IP Address of the Router
If the IP address of the router does not correspond to one of those I have already indicated, try to take a look at any label stuck on the device itself or in the user manual. If the IP address is not listed, don't worry, you can find it directly from your computer.
If you are using a Windows computer you can know the IP address to enter the router by typing cmd in the search field accessible by clicking on the button Start. In the window that will open at this point, type the command ipconfig and then press the button Submit on your PC keyboard to get the complete list of addresses related to your connection. The router's IP address is that series of numbers you see next to the entry Default gateway.
If, on the other hand, you use a Mac you can know the IP address through which you can access the control panel of the router by going to System preference (the icon with the gears on the Dock) and clicking on the item Network. In the window that opens, select the name of the connection in use (for example Wi-Fi) and click on your button Advanced which is located at the bottom right. At this point by pressing on the card TCP / IP you will find the address you need to connect to indicated next to the wording router.
How to Change Wi-Fi Channel
Once you have accessed the router control panel, find the section of the same dedicated to configuring the wireless network. Unfortunately I cannot give you very precise information about it since the menu structure varies from router to router, however try to look for sections of the router panel with references to the wireless network or WLAN.
For example, on Technicolor devices to access the right section it is necessary to first press on the voice Home network located in the left sidebar, then on Interfaces, Then WLAN: NomeTuaRete where instead of YourNetworkName you find the name of your WiFi network written and then on the item Configure that you find located at the top right.
If you use a router instead D-Link you have to select the tab Setup located at the top left and select the item 2.4G Wireless or the voice 5G Wireless from the left sidebar (depending on whether you want to change the 2.4GHz or 5GHz Wi-Fi network settings, assuming you have a dual-band device). The same operation, on routers TP-Link you can do it by selecting the item Wireless 2.4GHz or the voice Wireless 5GHz from the left sidebar. For more detailed instructions related to other brands of routers, consult the dedicated guides I published in the past on the blog.
- How to configure a D-Link router
- How to configure a TP-Link router
- How will I configure a Netgear router
- How to configure a TIM router
- How to configure an Infostrada router
- How will I configure a Fastweb router
Once you are on the wireless network settings screen, locate the related to Wi-Fi channel and set it to a value other than the default. Personally, as far as 2.4GHz networks are concerned, I recommend the number 1 or the number 6 or the number 11 (which are the only channels that do not "overlap" with each other), while for 5GHz networks there should be no need to change the default channel.
5GHz networks, in case you don't know, are only available in router dual-band and are highly recommended as, although less resistant to obstacles than those at 2.4 GHz, they are less subject to interference. However, keep in mind that in this case, in addition to the router, the connection target devices must also be equipped with support for the latter, otherwise you will not be able to establish the connection. The 5 GHz network is seen by target devices as a separate connection from the 2.4 GHz one.
After changing the WiFi channel in the router, then save the changes made to the router configuration by clicking on the button Apply, Save or OK. Please note that once this is done your router may restart.
How to Identify "free" Wi-Fi Channels
As we just said, the best Wi-Fi channels for 2.4GHz networks are 1, 6 and 11, but how do you choose between these three? The answer is: choose the less "crowded" one. To find out which are the freest Wi-Fi channels, you need to monitor the surrounding connections and you need to identify the radio channel that is currently, so to speak, less "crowded". And how do you monitor the surrounding connections? With special software, all strictly free.
If you use a Windows PC download the free program WifiInfoView. You can find the software by clicking here. Then extract it to a folder of your choice and then launch it by double clicking on its icon. Then wait for your computer to detect all the wireless networks available nearby (clearly to do this it must be equipped with a network card with wireless support) then click on the tab Channel and evaluate which is the freest channel. If available, choose a channel that also has free adjacent channels as the channels are not clearly separated from each other but partly overlap.
Diagnosi Wireless (Mac)
If you use a Mac to find the freest WiFi channel, press the button Other at the keyboard and at the same time presses the network icon (the WiFi rackets) located at the top right of the menu bar. Then select the item Open wireless diagnosis ... from the menu that appears. In the window that will be shown to you at this point click on the button Continue, type the password for the account CEO of the Mac and then presses on the voice Scan annessa to the menu Window located on the menu bar. after this you will be shown a window in which the left sidebar will show the optimal channels to use for the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequencies.
If you prefer to act as a smartphone, you can also rely on Wi-Fi Analyzer, a free app for Android that shows a graph with the wireless channels occupied by surrounding connections. Or, if you're using an iOS terminal, you can use Apple's AirPort Utility which includes a Analisi Wi-Fi (to be activated in the menu Settings> AirPort Utility) through which you can find out which Wi-Fi channels are occupied by surrounding networks.
Once you change the Wi-Fi channel of the connection, you should be able to immediately notice an improvement in signal coverage. If this is not the case, try to change the WiFi channel again as I indicated in the previous lines or consider purchasing a Wi-Fi repeater.