How to set up your home Wi-Fi

Below is the script for the video above. If you want, give it a watch. If you want the info without the sound, read on. Also, while we have you, why don’t you subscribe to Popular Science on YouTube?

So you’re ready to stop stealing your neighbor’s internet and set-up your home WiFi network. Congratulations! You’ll just need three things to get yourself started:

  1. A modem from your internet service provider.

  2. A router to send the WiFi signal throughout your home. (Your router may be built into your modem)

  3. And a computer, phone, or device capable of receiving the internet to configure your router.

The modem

Before you plug in any cables, placement is key. You want your modem high up, away from things like microwaves that can disrupt its signal, but still within reach of your cables and an outlet.

Find a port on your wall for either a coaxial cable or a phone cord. Plug one end of the cable into the port and the other into the modem. Then plug your modem into an outlet. You should see it light up—once all the lights are green, your Internet is properly functioning.

The router.

If you have a separate router, now’s the time to attach it to your modem with an ethernet cord and plug it into an outlet. You can test if it’s working by looking for the name of the WiFi network on your device (this is usually located somewhere on the router.)

Securing your network

Now that your network is active, you’ll want to protect it. Your modem or router likely have a website or IP listed on them. Type this into your browser and log in with the credentials also listed on the device.

You should change your password type to WPA-2 and update the password. WPA-2 has greater security requirements and will make it harder for someone to steal your WiFi. Also, update the router firmware. These are crucial steps to protecting your home network.

That’s it! You’re all set. Yay, you!

For more, check out the video, above. You can also subscribe to Popular Science on YouTube.