A lot of people still get confused between a router and a modem. A router is what allows all wired and wireless devices to utilize the Internet at once and further lets them communicate with each other without having to do it over the Internet.
Whereas, a modem is a box that connects a home network to the wider Internet. Most Internet service providers tend to provide their subscribers with one single box that acts both as a router and modem. That said, both of them are still different technologies.
In fact, not every modem has a router and vice versa. Whether they are integrated or not, you still require both of them in order to provide an Internet connection to all the devices being used in your household.
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If possible, it’s always best to use a separate router and modem. With modern technology evolving rapidly, you can usually use a subtle modem for a good number of years, until it breaks down. However, you might need to replace a router for better coverage when you keep adding more devices to your home network.
You have the choice of saving money on your Internet bills if you invest in your own router and modem, rather than sticking to the one provided by your ISP. Although this is only true if you’ve subscribed to cable Internet, not DSL or fiber.
Here’s all you need to know about routers and modems.
A router’s main responsibility is to keep routing data between the devices being used in your home, and between them and the wider Internet. The router and tech entry system of interconnected devices is what’s referred to as a home network.
A modem simply connects to a single port on the router, usually labeled as “WAN” or “Wide Area Network.” All your devices are either connected wirelessly over the Wi-Fi standard or to the remaining ports.
The best router for a large-sized house with multiple devices is the Linksys EA8300 Max-Stream AC2200 Tri-Band Wi-Fi Router. It not only produces amazing Wi-Fi signals but also creates a responsive network for your household.
The number of wireless routers needed in a home ultimately depend on the size of the home, the number of devices that need the Internet, and where the router is placed in the home. In fact, you can also consider a mesh Wi-Fi system for a big enough household.
Your modem modulates and demodulates the electrical signals being sent via coaxial cables, phone lines, or any other type of wiring. In other words, a modem transfers digital information from your device into analog signals that have the ability to transmit over wires.
It then translates all incoming analog signals all the way back into the digital data that your device can understand. Most modems tend to have just two ports–one that connects it to the rest of the world, and the second one connects to a router or computer, which is an Ethernet jack.
If you have a cable Internet service at home, there’s a high chance that your ISP probably provided you with a modem when you’re subscribed to them. That said, if you were to look at your Internet bill, you’ll realize that you are paying a rental fee for this privilege.
This is one of the reasons why it’s always best to buy you a brown modem. That said, if you are using DSL or fiber Internet, you might have less options to choose from.
Maintaining and Troubleshooting Your Router
There’s no doubt that the router is a complicated piece of technology. It’s impossible to tell you everything you should know when it comes to fixing each and every networking issue you may face.
However, we’ve shared some of the more common maintenance and troubleshooting tips that should help keep your networking running as seamlessly as possible.
Position Your Router Well
A stand-alone router should always be close to the center of your home, and out in the open. That said, all routers should have a couple of obstructions around them. But never stick your router inside a desk or way back in a corner.
Update Your Router’s Firmware
Updating the router’s firmware can enhance its performance, introduce new features, and fix security issues. Latest routers usually install updates automatically, but if that’s not the case for your router, refer to your router’s manual to understand how to get it done.
Change Default Passwords
Always, always remember to change the default passwords of your router. This reduces the risk of Wi-Fi thieves lurking in your home network.
Reboot Your Modem and Router
If your router has been dropping signals, you should reboot it by unplugging it for a few seconds before plugging it back in.
We hope you finally know the difference between a router and a modem, it wasn’t all that complicated was it?