Best option for getting internet to my upstairs computer when everything is downstairs

KeriosKerios Registered User regular
Here's my problem: I just moved into a new place and the internet is all downstairs but wireless. My PC in my upstairs room has no way to go wireless unless I buy a wireless card. I have a router and modem, ethernet cables, and a place to hook up said router from the wall. But I have no idea how to make everything 'talk' to each other or what that would even be called if I can to google it. Any advice?

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  • dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    When I had this happen at an apartment, I ran 100ft of ethernet cable along the baseboard. Would need more information about what you mean router "from the wall".

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  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Try out powerline adaptors. It runs a connection through your normal power sockets in the wall.

    Pretty easy to set up and mostly plug and play. You can get ones that give you another wifi hotspot, or you can run an ethernet cord from them.

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  • iRevertiRevert Tactical Martha Stewart Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    When you say "And a place to hook up from the wall" do you mean your place has something like this in the wall?

    31gj6OXhgGL._AC_UL320_SR202,320_.jpg

    If so in your basement you should have something going on from either just bare wire at worst to a bridge at best.

    iRevert on
  • see317see317 Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Honestly, if there is already a wifi network setup at your place, you might as well spend the 15-20 bucks to get a wireless NIC for your desktop. They're easy to install, dirt cheap to buy and a lot less work than trying to run cable if you don't already have a network port.
    Once you've got the NIC installed, you're computer should display a wireless network icon on the task bar next to the clock (assuming you're using windows) that'll look like the connectivity icon you probably have on your cell.
    Click on that to see a list of available networks, then connect to the existing network for your place.

    If you want your own network (which is completely understandable if you're sharing a place with other people) and if you have a place to connect the modem (depending on what type of modem, that could be a coaxial cable for a cable internet connection or a phone port for a DSL or dial up modem) then you'll be able to connect the modem there. Once the modem is connected, you should be able to connect your computer directly to it using the CAT5 cable, or if you have multiple internet capable devices that you want to connect you can connect the router to the modem, then the devices to the router.
    If you go this route, you may need to contact the ISP with the modems information so it can be recognized by their network. There should be a sticker with the MAC address on the modem somewhere.

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  • LostNinjaLostNinja Registered User regular
    I have this problem in my current apartment (no internet Jack anywhere near the only reasonable location for my desktop), and use a USB WiFi stick.

    I think this is the one I'm using and haven't had any issues. It's obviously not as fast as being hard wired, but doesn't run any slower than any other wifi device I use.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B004N625BY/ref=mp_s_a_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1474256246&sr=8-2&pi=SY200_QL40&keywords=belkin+usb+wifi+adapter&dpPl=1&dpID=31By95bIrBL&ref=plSrch

  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    To answer a few questions: It's not an ethernet outlet. It's the one where you can screw in something (I forget what it's called) and it has a sharp middle point. My friend magically pulled out a USB wireless stick, but it doesn't work well. For instance, my laptop works fine in the same exact room as my PC so I know the wireless internet is great. Using my PC only (without running my laptop of course) the internet cuts in and out and barely works with that USB stick. I read in a post that I should spend 15 to 20 bucks on an NIC adaptor, so I'll look into that as well as a powerline adapter. Though again, I thought it was strange that my laptop works fine where my PC doesn't. It isn't feasible to run an ethernet cable from downstairs (this is a 2 story house and the router is downstairs and my bedroom is upstair).

  • JasconiusJasconius sword criminal mad onlineRegistered User regular
    wireless USB sticks for towers, in my experience, are susceptible to interference and basically suck

    you could try buying a 2 dollar USB extender cord so that you could place the stick itself away from the tower in a more connective location...

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  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Kerios wrote: »
    To answer a few questions: It's not an ethernet outlet. It's the one where you can screw in something (I forget what it's called) and it has a sharp middle point. My friend magically pulled out a USB wireless stick, but it doesn't work well. For instance, my laptop works fine in the same exact room as my PC so I know the wireless internet is great. Using my PC only (without running my laptop of course) the internet cuts in and out and barely works with that USB stick. I read in a post that I should spend 15 to 20 bucks on an NIC adaptor, so I'll look into that as well as a powerline adapter. Though again, I thought it was strange that my laptop works fine where my PC doesn't. It isn't feasible to run an ethernet cable from downstairs (this is a 2 story house and the router is downstairs and my bedroom is upstair).

    Thats a coaxial cable

    You can also get adaptors that will push internet through that wiring. Google 'internet over coax' or look it up on amazon and it should bring something up

    Not sure how easy it is to setup though. Powerline adaptors are probably easier, but you could do the research yourself

    Wassermelone on
  • KarlKarl Registered User regular
    I highly recommend powerline adaptors.

    I use one to hard wire my PC from the router on the ground floor to my bedroom on the 3rd.

    I get consistent a steady 48-50 MBPS.

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  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    Go wireless, much cheaper and less likely to screw up. As others have said, using a Wireless usb stick generally works just fine, even for high demand online games. My wife and I both use them for MMOs and Overwatch and have no problems with latency.

  • LostNinjaLostNinja Registered User regular
    Jasconius wrote: »
    wireless USB sticks for towers, in my experience, are susceptible to interference and basically suck

    you could try buying a 2 dollar USB extender cord so that you could place the stick itself away from the tower in a more connective location...

    This is true, you have to be careful that it generally has fairly little obstructing it. For instance, mine has to be on the front of my tower, and I can't close the door to the cabinet my tower is in while using it.

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  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Go wireless, much cheaper and less likely to screw up. As others have said, using a Wireless usb stick generally works just fine, even for high demand online games. My wife and I both use them for MMOs and Overwatch and have no problems with latency.

    I dunno, powerline adaptors are pretty damn easy. The ones I've used you just kinda plug them in and suddenly you have ethernet ports where there werent any, and a new wifi hotspot for your tablet/phone.

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  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    So I'm hearing both the position of my USB wireless stick could be the problem or get a Powerline Adapter to boost the signal or create an ethernet port in my room. I'm looking at powerline adapters now and they look like they connect wirelessly. Are they more powerful than a USB stick wireless adapter? If so, do they need to be say, in the hall to then bounce to my PC? Or should I plug it in to my PC nearby and run an ethernet cable to it? I'll try fiddling around with the usb position tonight and look for powerline adapters online. What price is decent for these? Amazon runs from 50 to 100

  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Kerios wrote: »
    So I'm hearing both the position of my USB wireless stick could be the problem or get a Powerline Adapter to boost the signal or create an ethernet port in my room. I'm looking at powerline adapters now and they look like they connect wirelessly. Are they more powerful than a USB stick wireless adapter? If so, do they need to be say, in the hall to then bounce to my PC? Or should I plug it in to my PC nearby and run an ethernet cable to it? I'll try fiddling around with the usb position tonight and look for powerline adapters online. What price is decent for these? Amazon runs from 50 to 100

    Powerline adapters use the electrical current in your outlets and modulates that to transmit the signal on the wiring in your house. You buy two, typically identical. One for an outlet near the router, one for an outlet for where you want the new ethernet jack. They work reasonable well if the outlets are on the same breaker box (most are in a house/apartment.) I have had no luck using them on power strips though.

    Edit: If you buy them prepaired, like most of the base sets are, then set up is literally plug into outlet, connect ethernet, then you've got internets.

    DevoutlyApathetic on
  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    Powerline adapters don't connect wirelessly, the connect over the electrical wires already in your home.

    You plug the main powerline adapter unit into a normal electrical outlet near your router that receives internet. You plug an ethernet cable from your router to the adapter. You plug a secondary powerline adapter into a normal electrical wall socket upstairs near the computer you want to have internet. Then run ethernet cable from that adapter to your computer. Donezo

    You CAN get a powerline adapter that then generates a new wireless hotspot from the secondary adapter plugged in upstairs. But

  • AiouaAioua Ora Occidens Ora OptimaRegistered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Powerline is probably your best bet. Occasionally I've heard of them being flaky but that's something that comes down to the specific wiring in your house.

    Now, since you know the wireless signal is ok in your room (since the laptop works without problem) if you wanted to go the wireless route you'd want to buy something like this:
    33-704-133-02.jpg

    An actual card you plug in.

    The little USB wireless adapters are, as you've found, not very good.

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  • OrogogusOrogogus San DiegoRegistered User regular
    Are there many ways to screw up a Powerline installation? I have a paired Belkin set that I've never been able to get working in my house, even within the same room. The house was built in 1994 so I don't think the wiring would be too old, but somehow the adapters never detect each other.

  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    The only thing that comes to mind is that they're not paired to each other? Otherwise that should be a pretty ideal scenario for them. I guess you could take them to someplace else and try and get them to work but a house from 94 shouldn't be an issue.

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    Aioua wrote: »
    Powerline is probably your best bet. Occasionally I've heard of them being flaky but that's something that comes down to the specific wiring in your house.

    Now, since you know the wireless signal is ok in your room (since the laptop works without problem) if you wanted to go the wireless route you'd want to buy something like this:
    33-704-133-02.jpg

    An actual card you plug in.

    The little USB wireless adapters are, as you've found, not very good.

    YMMV, I got a pair of USB ones that worked for pretty much 3 years across multiple floors for two computers online, playing high data games with no trouble at all. While wireless streaming was frequently going on on various Roku devices.

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    Powerline is extremely finicky. You could be on separate nodes of the breaker that can't quite make the jump. Or there could be weak wiring somewhere along the chain that's causing interference. The mention above about them not being paired with each other is possible, but unlikely if they were bought any time in the last couple years. I've never seen them not come paired properly if they're decent powerline adapters (read: Netgear or Actiontec).

    You're plugging them directly into the wall, right? They won't work through surge protectors. Also try other outlets, even in the same room. I've had to do some kind of hacky setups with them in some clients' homes just to get a signal.

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  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Not a Fictional Character Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    A media hub maybe? It grabs wireless signals and shoves them back into wires.

  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    Thank you for all the replies so far! The house is relatively new, so powerline adapter shouldn't be a problem on the wiring end. Amazon has on average about 50-60 dollar ones while wireless cards as shown in above pictures run about 35. If i want to play games like Overwatch for FF14, which would provide more reliability?

  • FiggyFiggy Registered User regular
    Powerline is wired, so once it's set up you don't have to worry about WiFi strength, losing signal, etc.

    Honestly, get powerline. You could even put a switch in the upstairs room and have Ethernet connections for a few things.

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    $49.99 for a Wifi Powerline adapter. This will give you two Ethernet ports in your upstairs room, as well as extending your wifi up there. Then your PC can be hooked up with a hardwire, and you have a wifi extension for your phone and other devices.

    I wish we carried these because they're a lot less expensive than the Netgear ones, and every bit as good.

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  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    Great answers, thank you again!

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    Kerios wrote: »
    Thank you for all the replies so far! The house is relatively new, so powerline adapter shouldn't be a problem on the wiring end. Amazon has on average about 50-60 dollar ones while wireless cards as shown in above pictures run about 35. If i want to play games like Overwatch for FF14, which would provide more reliability?

    Again, your miles may vary. I've never had a problem with my wireless cheap card (which was about 30 bucks when I got it off newegg). My newer computer has a built in card and it also has worked great.

    143999
  • BotznoyBotznoy Registered User regular
    for a super temporary solution you can use your phone's connection to the wifi over usb

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  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    edited September 2016
    Enc wrote: »
    Aioua wrote: »
    Powerline is probably your best bet. Occasionally I've heard of them being flaky but that's something that comes down to the specific wiring in your house.

    Now, since you know the wireless signal is ok in your room (since the laptop works without problem) if you wanted to go the wireless route you'd want to buy something like this:
    33-704-133-02.jpg

    An actual card you plug in.

    The little USB wireless adapters are, as you've found, not very good.

    YMMV, I got a pair of USB ones that worked for pretty much 3 years across multiple floors for two computers online, playing high data games with no trouble at all. While wireless streaming was frequently going on on various Roku devices.

    I plugged my USB into the front of my PC and it works way better... but not good enough. I don't know if putting it closer to the door works and closing the door really cuts off the signal. I worry that going the wireless route will stop working when I close the door too. Does anyone have any problems with this if I buy a wireless card?

    Kerios on
  • SmokeStacksSmokeStacks The Myth, the Legend, the Bowman, the Shambler FuckerRegistered User regular
    Aioua wrote: »
    Powerline is probably your best bet. Occasionally I've heard of them being flaky but that's something that comes down to the specific wiring in your house.

    I had a lower cost set that I got on sale on Amazon for $30 or so for a pair and they worked fantastic as soon as they were paired.

    The only issue I had was that once a day or so the connection would cut out and I would have to unplug one of them for a second and then plug it back in, after a second or two the connection was back and I was good to go.

    This issue stopped as soon as I turned off the automatic power saving/low power mode on the adapters though. Something to keep in mind as a potential troubleshooting step @Kerios if you end up running into the same issue.

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  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    Try out powerline adaptors. It runs a connection through your normal power sockets in the wall.

    Pretty easy to set up and mostly plug and play. You can get ones that give you another wifi hotspot, or you can run an ethernet cord from them.

    I have one of these. They are awesome.

    As long as you can find two electrical outlets that are on the same powerline, you can have a wired connection anywhere in your house.

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  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    Cantido wrote: »
    Try out powerline adaptors. It runs a connection through your normal power sockets in the wall.

    Pretty easy to set up and mostly plug and play. You can get ones that give you another wifi hotspot, or you can run an ethernet cord from them.

    I have one of these. They are awesome.

    As long as you can find two electrical outlets that are on the same powerline, you can have a wired connection anywhere in your house.

    How do I know if they are on the same powerline? Breakers?

  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Kerios wrote: »
    Thank you for all the replies so far! The house is relatively new, so powerline adapter shouldn't be a problem on the wiring end. Amazon has on average about 50-60 dollar ones while wireless cards as shown in above pictures run about 35. If i want to play games like Overwatch for FF14, which would provide more reliability?

    Again, your miles may vary. I've never had a problem with my wireless cheap card (which was about 30 bucks when I got it off newegg). My newer computer has a built in card and it also has worked great.

    What about if you shut your door to your room? Does that affect it at all? For reference, I'm upstairs and around the corner from the router, so a fair distance but the house is more vertical and turns than long.

  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    Kerios wrote: »
    Cantido wrote: »
    Try out powerline adaptors. It runs a connection through your normal power sockets in the wall.

    Pretty easy to set up and mostly plug and play. You can get ones that give you another wifi hotspot, or you can run an ethernet cord from them.

    I have one of these. They are awesome.

    As long as you can find two electrical outlets that are on the same powerline, you can have a wired connection anywhere in your house.

    How do I know if they are on the same powerline? Breakers?

    You don't, really. That's why I mention Powerline adapters are kind of hit and miss. They usually work great, but you might have to move them around a bit to different outlets before they pick each other up.

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  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    Kerios wrote: »
    Enc wrote: »
    Kerios wrote: »
    Thank you for all the replies so far! The house is relatively new, so powerline adapter shouldn't be a problem on the wiring end. Amazon has on average about 50-60 dollar ones while wireless cards as shown in above pictures run about 35. If i want to play games like Overwatch for FF14, which would provide more reliability?

    Again, your miles may vary. I've never had a problem with my wireless cheap card (which was about 30 bucks when I got it off newegg). My newer computer has a built in card and it also has worked great.

    What about if you shut your door to your room? Does that affect it at all? For reference, I'm upstairs and around the corner from the router, so a fair distance but the house is more vertical and turns than long.

    Hasn't ever been a problem for us. We have single floor block and fill construction, with essentially 2 "wings" to the house breaking off a central living room. We positioned our router as close to the center of the house as we could, and then made everything that used internet in the house wireless.

    Again, no problems for us doors open or closed. How strong is your wireless signal?

  • KeriosKerios Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Kerios wrote: »
    Enc wrote: »
    Kerios wrote: »
    Thank you for all the replies so far! The house is relatively new, so powerline adapter shouldn't be a problem on the wiring end. Amazon has on average about 50-60 dollar ones while wireless cards as shown in above pictures run about 35. If i want to play games like Overwatch for FF14, which would provide more reliability?

    Again, your miles may vary. I've never had a problem with my wireless cheap card (which was about 30 bucks when I got it off newegg). My newer computer has a built in card and it also has worked great.

    What about if you shut your door to your room? Does that affect it at all? For reference, I'm upstairs and around the corner from the router, so a fair distance but the house is more vertical and turns than long.

    Hasn't ever been a problem for us. We have single floor block and fill construction, with essentially 2 "wings" to the house breaking off a central living room. We positioned our router as close to the center of the house as we could, and then made everything that used internet in the house wireless.

    Again, no problems for us doors open or closed. How strong is your wireless signal?

    No clue! But enough for my 10 year old laptop to catch a signal and watch Netflix. It's just not strong enough to play games.

  • 143999143999 Tellin' ya not askin' ya, not pleadin' with yaRegistered User regular
    Kind of an aside, but has powerline-based in-home network equipment had a leap in reliability in the last five years or so? It's been a while since I looked into it, but the last time I did, the general consensus I found was that it was an option of last resort. I'm reading kind of the opposite here now.

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  • BlazeFireBlazeFire Registered User regular
    Shadowfire wrote: »
    Kerios wrote: »
    Cantido wrote: »
    Try out powerline adaptors. It runs a connection through your normal power sockets in the wall.

    Pretty easy to set up and mostly plug and play. You can get ones that give you another wifi hotspot, or you can run an ethernet cord from them.

    I have one of these. They are awesome.

    As long as you can find two electrical outlets that are on the same powerline, you can have a wired connection anywhere in your house.

    How do I know if they are on the same powerline? Breakers?

    You don't, really. That's why I mention Powerline adapters are kind of hit and miss. They usually work great, but you might have to move them around a bit to different outlets before they pick each other up.

    Maybe this is a location-dependent thing, but here the outlets in one room are all on the same circuit. I'm pretty sure that is a code requirement.

  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    That's code pretty much everywhere, as far as I know. But it doesn't matter, powerline is just touchy. When it works, it's solid. Sometimes you put two adapters on either side of the house and they work like an ethernet cable. Other times, you plug them into the same room and they can't find each other.

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