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Tech: Dongle!

GUEST,Jacqued 05 May 12 - 03:32 PM
Paul Burke 05 May 12 - 03:36 PM
GUEST 05 May 12 - 03:39 PM
JohnInKansas 05 May 12 - 09:53 PM
gnomad 06 May 12 - 03:32 AM
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Subject: Tech: Dongle!
From: GUEST,Jacqued
Date: 05 May 12 - 03:32 PM

Greetings!   Help with Dongle reception, please.   I have a PC mit dongle 5m from the router but 2 thick stone walls in between - connection very intermittent.   Grandson has X-Box same distance, same 2 walls - connection permanent and excellent.   Wife has Kindle 7m from router, same 2 thick walls in between - connection permanent and excellent.   Question:   could my PC dongle be inadequate?   Additional info:   I'm an original dinosaur.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dongle!
From: Paul Burke
Date: 05 May 12 - 03:36 PM

Your dongle isn't big enough.

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Subject: RE: Tech: Dongle!
Date: 05 May 12 - 03:39 PM

Worth trying a USB extension cable, to get the dongle further from the electronic smog coming from the computer and to allow you to try pointing it in different directions. But truth to tell, a network cable is way better!

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Subject: RE: Tech: Dongle!
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 05 May 12 - 09:53 PM

Some dongles are expected to plug directly into a USB slot on the computer. If that's the kind you have, using a different slot on the computer might point it differently. Pointing it in a different direction may make it work differently (although not necessarily better).

A few dongles have a "stand" and are expected to connect via a USB cable so that you can move them around and point them in different directions a little more conveniently with the same results (or lack of results).

If a USB cable is already in your setup, there is a remote likelihood that the cable is bad, so you might try replacing the cable if you have another handy.

Although failure of USB connectors, usually producing intermittents, is seldom mentioned by the hardware sellers, the contacts can get dirty or bent, so trying a different hole to plug into might help when that's the case.

Any "wireless" connection to your router is an open port that your "neighbors" can try to use to steal your access to your internet provider, especially if you haven't applied at least something other than the default password for protection - at least on the router. Someone nearby trying to "piggyback" on your service could cause your own connection to be variable or intermittent (and could also expose your computer to some kinds of malware).

Among less likely difficulties, the X-box and/or Kindle - especially if they established connections with the router before you set up the donglified computer - might produce some "contention over port assignments" at the router. Many internet service providers are willing to provide fairly competent setup assistance (usually free in my area) for new connections (or ones that fail later) and might offer advice.

A network cable really is better - if your hardware allows it, although if the 8-meters is a "straight line" distance, by the time you route a cable through or around the walls you might be over the maximum cable lengths usually recommended for "home quality" equipment.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dongle!
From: gnomad
Date: 06 May 12 - 03:32 AM

I had a similar problem in my last home, which had thick stone walls, and was an unsuitable candidate for running cables.

My solution was to use a homeplug setup, in these data is routed along your existing electrical circuit. Here is an article giving some details about homeplug, unsurprisingly they also sell the gear.

I don't know whether you are in the UK, but am sure that if these guys are not available for you then you will have some local equivalent. Do be sure to get your kit all using the same standard, there are a few.
There are also several manufacturers, and generally people seem to recommend sticking with just one, which sounds sensible. I used Solwise.

I found the technology reasonably straightforward to set up (I too am something of a dinosaur), and definitely an improvement in both reliability and speed over my rather erratic wireless link.

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