A router is basically a device that can connect multiple computers to a network. This means that multiple computers in your house can be connected to the Internet without your computer being connected through wires to a box. Routers such as the tp-link ac1200 manual make it easier for people to access the Internet because now their network signal can be transmitted wirelessly to multiple computers throughout their house.

The first step to creating a wireless network is, of course, buying a router. I personally recommend that you buy a router from either Newegg or Tigerdirect online because they have the cheapest prices on the Internet. There are basically two different kinds of routers Wireless-G and Wireless-N. To make this as simple as possible G type routers transmit data (your signal) a little bit slower than N-type routers. If you have a slow Internet speed it would be best to buy a cheaper G type router because you would not benefit from the N-type router. Wireless-N routers can transmit data much faster than Wireless-G routers so if you have a fast Internet connection I would recommend you buying a Wireless-N router because this maximizes possible Internet speed. I would recommend buying a wireless-G router from a brand such as Zonet because of their ridiculously low prices, you can buy one on Newegg for $19.99.

Once you have your router you must hook it up with an Ethernet cord to the box your Internet provider has provided for you. Once the Ethernet cable is connected between the two devices your router is ready to begin transmitting your network signal.

Here are ten tips to maximize your usage of your router:

Tip #1: To access and change settings on your router you must open your Internet browser and type in the address your routers instruction manual has specified. You can usually just enter and it should bring up a log-in screen in which you type in the info in your instructions manual. Usually, the default username will be admin and there will probably be no password.

Tip #2: Set a password for your router. Your router will prompt you to make a password that is either WEP or WAP. The choice is yours to make. A WEP password is basically just a group of numbers, whereas a WAP is a user-defined password. This password will be necessary for anyone to log-in and use your network. This reduces the risk of cyberattacks.

Tip #3: You can change the name of your router to make it seem more distinguishable to you. Most routers broadcast the signal name (SSID) as the default brand of your router. This tells everyone what kind of router you have. You can change the name of your signal by changing the SSID. This option should be in the general options menu of your router.

Tip #4: Remember when you logged in to your router? (Tip #1) There was no password set! You can change the username and password by going to the general menu and changing the log-in details. Make sure to change the username, because when hackers try to get into your network they will most often try using username admin. This also makes it to where fellow family members or kids cannot go in and clear information from your router. They would have to know the username and password.

Tip #5: There is a log on your router that keeps track of the times in which users connect to your network. Each computer has a name, so when you look at the recent connections to your network it will tell you what computer connected and at what time. Going back to tip 4, you can use this log to see if your kid is up at odd times at night and connecting when they should not be.

Tip #6: If you are a safety nut, then you can also make it to where only computers with certain MAC addresses can enter your network. This makes it to where no other computers except your own can access your network. To find the MAC address for your computer go to command prompt, or go running and type in cmd, then type in IP config /all, this should show all kinds of stuff about the network you are on and it should show you your MAC address. There is a table in your router’s options that you can set up. Just add this MAC address in and now only that computer can access your network.

Tip #7: You can also enter IP addresses to block from entering your network. So if you ground your kid hypothetically from using the Internet you can just temporarily ban his IP address so that he cannot access the network.

Tip #8: Some routers display what sites someone went to while connected to the network. This information should be somewhere around where the router’s time log is. This option can make it easier to watch what someone else is looking at on the Internet.

Tip #9: My computer has a low signal. The farther away from your computer network adapter is from the router the weaker the signal you are going to get. The greater the signal the greater the speed your network can attain. Routers have all kinds of different ranges of signal range, the best way to find the range is by checking the specifications of the router on the box.

Tip #10: My router is not working!!!!! If your router is not working contact the company that you bought the product from and call customer support. You can also if you have another device that has Internet handy go check out technical forums online to find out the answer to your problems. Most of everything can be fixed by reading a forum regarding a problem online.

I hope this guide helped you learn how to use your router more efficiently! If you have any questions refer to your instruction booklet that came with your router for general usage advice.