Question about PC Desktops
If you are referring to optimizing your security settings, there are a couple of things that you can generally try: ensure that your wireless network is WEP or WPA/WPA2-encrypted, enable MAC filters on your router, and set the router's broadcasting channel to one that is not heavily used in your area.
Wireless network encryption like Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) and Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA/WPA2) keys prevent any unauthorized user from accessing your wireless internet connection, in addition to preventing others from reading information sent between your router and computer. These keys are typically generated by your router, and must be manually entered into your laptop to grant it access to your home network. In most instances, you can enable these protections by accessing your router's control panel through its default website. Many routers or residential gateways will use one of the following addresses, but please keep in mind that it may vary from router to router:
You may be prompted for a user name and password before being able to proceed, and both are normally provided in your owner's manual documentation for the router. They may also be provided to you by your internet service provider (ISP) if you've elected to rent the networking equipment instead of purchasing it on your own.
Once you've gotten access to your router's control panel, you should be able to enable either of these encryption types by selecting the "Wireless Security" option from the main menu. Remember to write down or copy the passkey generated, because it will need to be entered into your laptop's wireless network settings exactly as it is presented through the router's control panel.
Media Access Control (MAC) filters can also be accessed from this same control panel. MAC filters are essentially "blacklists" and "whitelists" that restrict what hardware is able to access your network. Every wireless networking device will have a unique MAC address (or identification tag), which can be entered into these filters to either permit or deny them access to the internet.
Sometimes locating a device's MAC address can prove to be a challenge, especially if you are not familiar with how to set up your home network. For most versions of Windows, your MAC address can be found through the DOS prompt and may be referred to as your computer's "Physical Address." Please keep in mind however, that for every networking device connected to your computer you will have a different MAC address.
Additionally, you can use this same panel to change the channel on which your router broadcasts. In neighborhoods that have a high concentration of wireless networks, you can encounter sluggish performance online and difficulty connecting to your own network due to the number of signals available. This can typically be resolved by changing your router to a channel with minimal use in your area, but you may also need to make this change on your computer to adjust to any new network settings.
If you are still unsure how to proceed or have any doubts, I would strongly suggest contacting your local computer repair technician or ISP for further assistance. Remember that you can even obtain support through Geek Squad® agents, but you may be charged for any services you seek through your local Best Buy™ store.
Hope this helps you out.
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Posted on Jun 17, 2008
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