With the current fashion for tablets and handhelds we’re using wireless devices all over the house more than ever before; people are using their portable devices to access the Internet and online entertainment in all corners of the house and garden (including, quite commonly, the smallest room) and it’s a common observation that wireless access becomes very poor when you are some distance away from your wireless router.

If you have lots of telephone sockets in the house then it can be possible to move your wireless router to a more central position to give better coverage throughout the house, but this can have drawbacks with connection speed and may be inconvenient if your router needs to be next to your desktop computer or other hard-wired device.

In previous years it would have been necessary to install new data cabling to allow an extension to the network, and this would have meant unsightly cables running through the house or expensive work to hide cables under plaster, but it’s now possible to extend your network around the house using powerline plugs. These clever boxes transmit network signals around your house using your mains power cables; simply plug one unit into your router and you can plug in another unit elsewhere in the house to give you a network socket in a remote location, this could be behind your TV to connect in your Sky or BT Vision box, or next to your games console. Having a wired connection like this on your on-demand TV box or online gaming console can eliminate wireless lag too.

You can even add a powerline plug with a ‘wireless access point’ built in, to extend your wireless network into previously unreachable places, such as through thick stone walls or into a garage or workshop or outbuilding. I’ve got kits in-stock from £35 or £50 for a wireless kit.

More complaints about Windows 8 continue to fill my diary. Many Windows XP or Vista users are reluctant to take the leap to Windows 8 so there is soaring trade in refurbished windows 7 computers and Windows 7 install kits. I can supply refurbished Windows 7 laptops from £250 and performance towers from £200. If you’ve already got a Windows 8 computer and are struggling to adapt then a downgrade kit for around £75 includes a Windows 7 (Home Premium or Professional) licence and installation disks. You just need to add approximately two hours of labour to install.

I hope you find this information useful. If you would like to see particular subjects covered then please feel free to ask at

Al Findlay | Freelance IT & AV Support Consultant | Website design and Hosting | | 01395 542500


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