10 Replies Latest reply: Jun 28, 2007 8:54 AM by Final Testimony
Final Testimony Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I'm not sure if such a product exists, but I am looking for a portable add-on to my Macbook (USB or otherwise) that boosts its Wi-Fi reception range. I use a free, wireless network in my neighborhood for internet access, but the only time I can connect to it from my third floor apartment is while I'm right by the window - even then it's only at one-bar. An add-on that would allow my MacBook to grab this signal with enough strength for two to three bars throughout my apartment would be highly beneficial.

Thank you.

MacBook, Mac OS X (10.4.8)
  • JSwerdy Level 3 Level 3 (600 points)
    the products i know of would not plug into your computer, but would plug into the wall and boost the wireless signal available, almost all the manufacturers make these products so you would just have to find out the router maker (some times they conflict, belkin tends to not like linksys, i know this because we just went through this process extending the wireless throughout my house) they do require some setup so you might need to be in contact with the person running the wireless network in your neighborhood to coordinate the signal boost
  • JoeyR Level 6 Level 6 (8,275 points)
    Also... signal boosters are really extenders. They can't actually give you a stronger signal than they get. If there is someplace you can put the booster where it gets a strong signal, it will be able to provide that stronger signal to your MacBook. But... the signal you get will only be as strong as the signal you booster can get.
  • Boece Level 5 Level 5 (6,245 points)
    Get a wireless ethernet bridge.

    Its cable plugs into your ethernet port, but allows you more freedom on where to place the unit (and its antenna). Limited only by the length of the ethernet cable between it and your computer.
  • terrace_29 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    " almost all the
    manufacturers make these products so you would just
    have to find out the router maker (some times they
    conflict, belkin tends to not like linksys, i know
    this because we just went through this process
    extending the wireless throughout my house)"


    I bought my macbook last January and for at least the first 3 months my signal was booming and I was surfing the intenet at a very good pace. The last month I was able to connect I was using a network called 'belkin54g' and even now I get a very strong signal from belkin, but cannot connect at all. None of the other networks work either and as a result, I'm not able to connect from my home.

    Strikes me as odd, but I wondering what I need to do to connect. I have a DSL connection from my desk-top, do I need to get a router from my ISP? Or from Apple? Or will any old router do?

    Any suggestions would be helpful, I would surely like to have internet access from my home.
  • Justin Paul Reese Level 5 Level 5 (4,235 points)
    You haven't considered the Airport Express at all, have you?
  • Stuart Vandeventer Level 2 Level 2 (390 points)
    My suggestion would be to invest in your own internet connection.
  • Boece Level 5 Level 5 (6,245 points)
    Generally speaking any wired or wireless router would let you share your DSL connection with your two computers.

    Your access to your neighbors' connections probably doesn't work anymore because they have implemented password protection or security protocols.
  • JSwerdy Level 3 Level 3 (600 points)
    yea, hes complaining cuse hes leeching when the signal is weak

    for those who said they have been leeching and the signal is there but they cant really connect or access anything once connected, usually what happens is the router needs to be reset on the owners end and you just have to wait till they reset it at a time when you are looking to access it
  • whats that? Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    leechers like you make internet slow for people like me!
  • Final Testimony Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I am not leeching. The open network I am connecting to is from a coffee shop down the street from where I live. It is free for anyone to use, whether you buy their coffee or not. I am not doing them a disservice by utilizing their network.

    Anyway, thank you all for the information. I'll look into Wi-Fi extenders and bridges.