Home networking: How to avoid traffic jams
By Michael Brown
November 30, 2009 06:00 AM ET
In many households today, broadband Internet connections are used not only for e-mail and Web browsing, but also to stream music and video, play online games and/or perhaps make voice calls using a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service.
You may have several PCs on your home network, as well as some combination of a gaming console like the Xbox 360, an iPhone or other handheld device, and perhaps a streaming music player such as the Squeezebox or a streaming video player such as the Roku. (And with the holiday gift-giving season upon us, it's possible you'll collect more devices soon.)
While some of these devices may have a wired connection to your router, most tap in wirelessly. So what happens when one person wants to listen to music, another wants to watch a movie and still another wants to play an online game all at once? If you've never tweaked your router's firmware, you might experience performance problems.
What's more, many wireless routers leave the factory with some of their best features disabled. I'll show you how to change your router's configuration so that you can take full advantage of its capabilities. By default, a wireless router maximizes the rate at which it transfers data.ComputerWorld