Router is upstairs, computer is downstairs, what do?

kimekime Queen of BladesRegistered User regular
Hi! So my wife and I just moved into a new house, yay! Ideally I'd like to have my computer on the main floor living room. But so far, the only cable connection we've found for the modem/router are all the way upstairs in our bedroom (there are a couple in a closer room, but they didn't seem to work for some reason (?)).

I actually have a really long ethernet cable that I could just snake down the stairs, or just move my computer closer, or buy a wifi dongle for the computer, but none of those are super ideal. Are there any ideas I haven't thought of yet? How hard is it to see what's going on with the apparently-not-working cable ports that are closer?

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  • LaOsLaOs SaskatoonRegistered User regular
    edited November 2016
    There was a thread here recently with the same situation, basically. I think the neatest solution seemed to be these things that used your house's wiring as a sort of network.

    [Edit]
    Powerline it was, I think. Here's the link from a few pages back:

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  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Make Ready. We Hunt.Registered User regular
    Yeah, a powerline ethernet networking kit is probably what you want.

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  • mRahmanimRahmani DetroitRegistered User regular
    Assuming that it's a typical drywall house, installing a low voltage old-work box can be done without destroying the walls and get you a wired router or switch downstairs. It's not that difficult, but if that seems daunting a local electrician can probably run it for you without a giant bill.

    kime
  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    edited November 2016
    mRahmani wrote: »
    Assuming that it's a typical drywall house, installing a low voltage old-work box can be done without destroying the walls and get you a wired router or switch downstairs. It's not that difficult, but if that seems daunting a local electrician can probably run it for you without a giant bill.

    Yeah, i wouldn't be able to do basically any hands-on stuff myself :P. Based on the actual positions of walls and such, though, I think running a new ethernet cable between the two locations would be difficult. It's not really "drop it downstairs," but "snake it around a whole bunch of turns/walls/maybe a ceiling or two".

    I'll look into the powerline stuff first, I think. I definitely didn't think that was very reliable, glad to hear that it may be a solid option. (Completely missed the earlier thread.)

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  • LaOsLaOs SaskatoonRegistered User regular
    It was back on Page 4 now, I think, so don't sweat it. I'm curious how you find the powerline stuff works for you.

  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    LaOs wrote: »
    It was back on Page 4 now, I think, so don't sweat it. I'm curious how you find the powerline stuff works for you.

    I'll find out tomorrow :D

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  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    Where does your cable come into the house? Most houses, it's either the garage or basement. If your cable comes into the house in your basement, check the splitters there for any loose connections. There's also likely a splitter in your attic/crawl space for the bedrooms, so check that one.

    As another option, you should be able to run a cable from where the service comes into your house, and up to your living room, without too much effort.

  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    Powerline is freaking magic.

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    I use powerline adapters for clients all the time, they really are magical.

    Other option is to spend some money on something like an Eero kit. They create a mesh network that works pretty well, though it depends a lot on the construction in your home.

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  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited November 2016
    Shadowfire wrote: »
    I use powerline adapters for clients all the time, they really are magical.

    Other option is to spend some money on something like an Eero kit. They create a mesh network that works pretty well, though it depends a lot on the construction in your home.

    Alternatively Google's New router thing does that and they have ethernet ports on them

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    mts wrote: »
    Shadowfire wrote: »
    I use powerline adapters for clients all the time, they really are magical.

    Other option is to spend some money on something like an Eero kit. They create a mesh network that works pretty well, though it depends a lot on the construction in your home.

    Alternatively Google's New router thing does that and they have ethernet ports on them

    That too. I haven't had a chance to play with them yet, so I don't know how they hold up to the Eero. But I'm excited to try.

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  • MalgarasMalgaras Registered User regular
    +1 for powerline adapter

    I was super skeptical too, but I now use one in my incredibly stupidly wired apartment (Internet comes in through the kitchen?!?!?) set up in a way that every device in the house uses it for internet traffic and it has worked fine so far.

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    Yea, I use one to bring a wired internet connection to my TV/PS4/XBO downstairs. The only problem is that when we use the treadmill, it pulls enough power that it interrupts the connection. But that's also a weird thing where we have the treadmill too close to the TV so it shares a circuit.

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  • a nu starta nu start Registered User regular
    To give you a different option, I use a wireless bridge myself. My router is downstairs, and my computer is upstairs. I use a Japan specific version of this combo router/bridge. It works really well, and it was just a button press to get them to pair up.

    It's old equipment, so there's probably better setups out there now.

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  • lindseyreyeslindseyreyes Registered User new member
    Best option is wireless extender, works like a charm.

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  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Best option is wireless extender, works like a charm.

    I got one, it sucked.

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  • DelzhandDelzhand Hard to miss. Registered User regular
    If you've got a crimper and can get a single cat5 connector, the cable itself only has about a 5mm diameter. Sometimes a hole in the floor is the fastest and cheapest solution. In my last house, it conveniently had a pair of holes already in the floor, all I had to was take my extra long cable, clip the end off one side, thread it through, and recap it.

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  • ThundyrkatzThundyrkatz Registered User regular
    We use a wireless extender and it works great for what it is. The option we had was no connection in our master bedroom, with the extender we have a decent signal. I wouldn't want to game on that signal, but streaming is fine and it was the best, cheapest option. I think if you use the extender with the understanding of what you will get it can have its uses.

  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    I tend to dissuade people from extenders because they just don't do a decent job for the money you spend. They almost always create a secondary network, so any mobile device needs to be told to switch networks instead of seamlessly hopping over. They're also taking an already weakened signal and bouncing it again. For the same price or a little more, you're better off with a powerline-WiFi adapter.

    I mean, a run of ethernet with a second router at the other end is best, but that's tough for a lot of folks to swing. You could see about getting an electrician in to run the ethernet for you.

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  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    An update! I got the powerline stuff set up Saturday. Saturday I hit some lag spikes for a short (5-10 minute) period, but it worked pretty well besides that.

    Sunday I completely lost connectivity for just a minute or so.

    Yesterday it was completely smooth.

    So..... overall I'd consider this a pretty nice success! Again, as we just moved, I'm unsure how much of that is due to the powerline and how much is due to a more shaky connection in general, but I'm more suspicious of the powerline stuff as we haven't really noticed anything else. But yeah, given what it's doing, this is pretty cool! Solid enough Internet to play video games/stream via my electricity lines.

    Thanks for the suggestions!

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  • MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    Good to hear it's working decent.

    What kit did you end up getting?

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  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    Because of this thread I ordered a powerline adapter set too. It should be here this weekend.

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  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    MichaelLC wrote: »
    Good to hear it's working decent.

    What kit did you end up getting?

    This, which I think is what was linked in the other thread.

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  • MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    kime wrote: »
    MichaelLC wrote: »
    Good to hear it's working decent.

    What kit did you end up getting?

    This, which I think is what was linked in the other thread.

    Ah, great. Thanks!

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  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    That range extender has this note on it: "Please ensure the adapters are connected on the same circuit"

    Wouldn't that seriously hinder where you could put them?

  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    Xaquin wrote: »
    That range extender has this note on it: "Please ensure the adapters are connected on the same circuit"

    Wouldn't that seriously hinder where you could put them?

    I think, generally, most things in most houses are going to be on the same circuit, yes? Like, if it's controlled by the same circuit board, pretty good chance it's all connected.

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  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited November 2016
    it's worded poorly I guess? You've usually got a max of 4-6 outlets on a circuit and they're usually fairly close to each other.

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  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    Xaquin wrote: »
    it's worded poorly than. for example, you've usually got a max of 4-6 outlets on a circuit and they're usually very close to each other.

    There's another bullet point there that says "Works over circuits on the same panel". That seems to be more clear, at least.

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  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    ahh, I missed that one

  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    i wonder if that would work on a subpanel to main panel? we have a subpanel in our upstairs and the main panel for downstairs but there is a breaker for the upstairs panel on it.

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    mts wrote: »
    i wonder if that would work on a subpanel to main panel? we have a subpanel in our upstairs and the main panel for downstairs but there is a breaker for the upstairs panel on it.

    As long as they're on the same panel, they'll work fine. So the two ends of one Powerline adapter on the same panel will work ok, or if both ends are on the same subpanel. But I almost never have luck jumping from panel to subpanel. The hardware is magical, but still limited.

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  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited November 2016
    If it works in the same panel there's, theoretically anyways, no reason it wouldn't work between a main and sub though.

    GFCI and surge protectors are going to be issues, though. Some panels put GFCI at the actual breaker instead of the outlet too.

    bowen on
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