Suffering with wireless internet connection woes? Wi-Fi is notoriously unreliable on Windows PCs and laptops, and even the best machines can struggle to communicate on your home network properly if your configuration isn’t perfect from the outset. Here are a few tools that might help you get your issues under control.
This is the only tool on our list which isn’t exactly free, although you can try it for 30 days before buying it for a one-off price. It’s an excellent tool for setting up your internet connection properly, allowing you to easily create a profile and adjust the necessary settings, which means you can get online quickly and without hassle.
This program scans your immediate area for available wireless networks and provides you with a wealth of information about each one, allowing you to diagnose connectivity problems more quickly. For example, you can compare the strength of different nearby networks using the same channel as your router, and change your settings if it looks like this could be an issue. It’s also great for identifying areas in your home where the Wi-Fi signal is blocked or weak.
A very similar tool to InSSIDer, the Xirrus alternative also picks up useful data about your local networks and feeds it back to help you solve connection problems. The main difference here is a nicer interface including a radar display that shows your nearby Wi-Fi networks, and calculates the distance between your PC and your Wi-Fi connection. On the other hand, it doesn’t include quite the same level of information; for example, comparative information about signal strength is missing.
This tool is slightly different as it’s more focused on finding Wi-Fi connections in different areas, not just your local surroundings. It can display (slightly inaccurate) information about where your local Wi-Fi spots are, but its best function is that you can look up other locations manually. This allows you to plan where you’re going to be able to find an internet connection before you travel to a new place, which could save a lot of hassle if this is something you do regularly.