1) The situation was that we did not have sufficient wifi coverage.
We noticed that the wifi was not very strong in one part of the house. Constantly dropping, and when it wasn't doing that, it was slow speeds. One morning, I set about fixing that.
2) The first idea: use a second router as a wifi bridge.
Using a backup router as a bridge allows you to get coverage all over your house and garage.
I had read about this solution in multiple places. You could use your old, backup, or slow router as a wifi repeater by modifying the broadcast settings.
The idea was that I could put a stagnant resource (old router) to work and also improve quality of life (stronger signal so no frustration on dropped connections and slow speeds).
3) The first solution did not work. Here's why:
- Repositioning the router in the basement did not work, because there was not a good coaxial cable port.
- We did not want to have it on the main floor. It is kind of an eyesore. I searched for an out of the way area to put the router on the main floor.
- I looked for a place to put a just a wifi on the main floor. That would still have a bunch of cords everywhere. And it turns out the router I have would only run in wired bridge mode, not as a wifi repeater.
4. Solved: Run the router in the attic and broadcast all over the house.
In all my searching through the attic and basement, I happened to find a CAT5 cable that had been run from the basement to attic, then just stuffed back into the wall. Weird, but very cool for me! =)
The cable worked!
I ran the cable to the router in the basement, and installed the new (old) wifi repeater in the attic. The location has the dual benefits of a more central location in the house (solved the weak wifi in a corner) and clear airspace to the garage (wifi in the garage and backyard as a bonus!).
The other potential solution would have been to search for another location in the basement for the original router, or find a way to hide the router on the main floor. Or find a way to put the router on display in an appealing way.