A hi-tech solution with an unexpected side-effect…

By | May 5, 2014
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First of all, profuse apologies that this issue is late – I had actually written it on Thursday and thought I’d sent it… and suddenly realised this morning that I’d set it up as a “page” instead of a “post” – so it was sat on our website in case anyone stumbled across it, but not sent to anyone.  I have my dozy moments…  Anyway, here it is:

A good question, a really hi-tech solution and a bit of news…

A good question about the heartbleed bug
I mentioned about the Heartbleed bug and what you should do about it last time.

But someone asked me a really good question, which I’m sure other people have wondered about: What if you use an iPad (or other tablet PC) instead of a normal desktop or laptop? Does that mean that since you’re not using Windows, you don’t have to worry about it?

Well, with some bugs and security issues, that’s true. But with the Heartbleed bug, the risk is actually at the other end – with the website itself. So it doesn’t make any difference whether you’re using a PC, an iPad or even a mobile phone to browse the web – if you use the websites I mentioned last time, it’s still a good idea to change the passwords.

A really high-tech (ahem) solution to a wi-fi problem… and an unexpected side-effect
Sometimes I work from home, for example when I’m writing this newsletter and I don’t want to be disturbed. And I’ve got a room where I keep my books and with a good desk for working. But it doesn’t have a carpet or proper flooring and the walls are currently bare plaster, so we’re redecorating it, which means the desk has come out (and the books).

So lately I’ve been working in a spare attic room – all very well, if a bit, erm, cosy. But the problem I’ve had (this is where it starts to get useful!) is that the wifi didn’t reach very well up there. The router’s on the ground floor (in the room that’s being redecorated, in fact) and every time I tried to look something up on the internet or send an email, it would complain.

If you have a similar problem, with your wifi not reaching to a room you want to use it in, there are various things you can do. You can buy a more powerful router, which simply sends the signal further. You can buy an extender that you plug in halfway – it picks up the signal and broadcasts it again, so it reaches further. Or you can even use a cable called a CAT5 cable to plug into the router, run it up the walls and into the PC/laptop.

I did something different, though. I hope you’re ready, because this is a bit technical… I didn’t even think of it myself at first. Here goes:

I moved the router onto a higher shelf.

Bingo – I now get a perfectly good signal even in the attic room.

There are two reasons I wanted to mention this (apart from displaying my stupidity in not thinking of it straight away…):
First, if you have a similar problem, don’t only think of the hi-tech solutions. Something simple is perfectly good too (and often cheaper).
Second, when I moved the router higher up, there was an unexpected side effect. The wifi signal is also now better in the kitchen. This surprised me as the kitchen is along the hall from the router, so it’s not moved any nearer, just higher up.
So if you have a room where your wifi signal doesn’t reach, or doesn’t reach very well, you could simply try putting your router on a higher shelf, even if you don’t move it any nearer. Worth a try!

News about the Inner Circle (as mentioned last time)
I mentioned last time that I’d have some news about the Inner Circle and here it is:
I’m going to be adding to it and making some improvements. I’ll be adding some new information and advice and also adding some new features – if you’re a member, you’ve got some good stuff coming! But while I’m doing this, I won’t be taking any new members. Existing members can carry on as normal but I’m shutting the doors while the work on improvements goes on!
But there’ll still be a few weeks while anyone who’s not yet a member can join before the work starts. There’ll be more information about how and why you might want to shortly – this is just an advance warning!

As I say, apologies for this issue being a few days late – and I hope you’re having a good bank holiday weekend! (We have Mum and Dad staying so we’re just about to take the boys to the park in Barrow now I’ve sent this!  There might even be ice-creams…)