Why go wireless?

Wireless networking is a rapidly expanding technology that is becoming more and more common in both businesses and homes.
There are several benefits to wireless networking: Firstly, no need to install cabling through you home/business which can be disruptive and expensive. Secondly, several PCs, laptops and other wireless devices can access the internet at the same time provided the device is within range of the wireless router. Thirdly, all devices on a wireless network can be configured if required so they can communicate with one another thus creating a wireless Local Area Network (LAN). Any number of devices can be connected to your broadband without the need for any cables or installing extra phone lines. If you have a second computer in an upstairs room, or a laptop as well as a desktop, the same broadband service will be available on all your machines at the same time.
There is now an increasing number of wireless "hot spots" throughout towns and cities whereby a laptop with wireless capability can connect to the internet or a network. Establishments such coffee houses, restaurants and libraries can offer these facilities.

How do you go wireless?

One popular means of wireless communication is by installing a wireless router in the home or office. It is essentially a wired router that also includes radio capability. A wireless router is basically a small, low-powered computer dedicated to nothing but providing Internet access to your wireless network. This device will broadcast radio signals that can be received by a computer(s) with a wireless adaptor card and thus is used instead of an Ethernet cable to access a network and/or internet.

Most wireless routers have the option of using Ethernet cable and/or radio capability. The wireless router is either plugged into an existing telephone land line or an incoming optic fiber cable. If the incoming cable already provides cable television then a splitter is used to tap off the cable for broadband. There are many different types of wireless router from low cost (e.g. Belkin wireless G router F5D7230) to devices with built in print servers (e.g. Belkin F5D7231-4P) to high end wireless N routers (e.g. Netgear WNR3500 RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router ). Always choose the best spec wireless router that you can afford.
Note: The default configuration of your wireless router is unsecure. Knowing how to properly set up, configure and secure your wireless router is key to the success of keeping the WiFi network protected. If your wireless router is set to the factory default, you're potentially opening yourself to intruders both from the internet and in your own neighborhood.