If you have multiple users on the same network, internet speeds can be an issue. But most routers let you prioritize one device over the other devices and here’s how.
Internet speed can get slow if there are too many users on the same network. Household networks suffer from this the most because the connection can get busy with multiple users. But it doesn’t have to be this way. There are some ways that you can prioritize a device over the other on the same network.
The setting is easy, but most people don’t know about it. Most routers have a feature called Quality of Service. So, if you use Altice One Optimum or other major ISPs, you probably already have it. Even if your router doesn’t have QoS, there are other methods you can try.
What Is Quality of Service?
In most modern homes, multiple devices use the internet. Any bandwidth that you have will get shared between all these devices. So, you can use the Quality-of-Service feature in your router settings to change that.
Whenever the bandwidth is limited, the device you choose will be the first in line. You can also prioritize certain types of traffic so that it gets the most speed.
It can be easier to understand how QoS works with the pizza slice analogy. Usually, your router is going to divide your Wi-Fi bandwidth into equal slices. But with QoS, marked gadgets can be more important than others. So, these gadgets can sometimes get bigger slices, or get dibs on them. So, an important Zoom call can get a bigger piece than a software update.
Setting Up QoS
Most routers can handle QoS differently and even have separate names for the same thing. But there are some basic steps that you should know about. Setting up the QoS isn’t that difficult, and even non-tech people can do it. Here are some steps you need to follow:
Step #1: Finding the MAC Address
Finding the MAC address of your device might be the trickiest part of the process. Most devices and operating systems can have different home menus. So, you might have to do a bit of digging to find the MAC address.
For Windows 7
- Go to Control Panel
- Scroll to Network & Sharing -> Change Adapter Settings
- Right-click on the current internet connection. (Wi-Fi or ethernet)
- Click on Status.
- Go to Details and find the MAC address.
For Windows 10
- Click on the Wi-Fi symbol on the taskbar.
- Select Network Settings.
- Click on Properties from the window.
- Look for the Physical Address (or MAC).
- Go to Settings -> General -> About.
- Find the Wi-Fi address.
- Tap on the gear icon to go to Settings.
- Go to Wireless & Networks.
- Tap Wi-Fi.
- Tap on the Menu button and then go to Advanced.
- Find the MAC address at the bottom of the list.
- Open the Apple menu.
- Go to Systems Preferences.
- Click on Network.
- Select your connection and then go to Advanced.
- Go to the Hardware tab and then find the MAC address.
For Gaming Consoles
- Go to Settings.
- Click on Network.
- Go to View Connection Status/Connection Settings.
Once you have the MAC address, copy it down somewhere because you will need it for the next steps.
Step #2: Log in to Your Router
You can log in to your router using any device and web browser. If you don’t have the login details of your router, they are easy to find. Most routers have a sticker at the back with the information that you need. Note down the password, username, and login IP. Then, you have to put those credentials in, and you can change your router settings.
Step #3: Configure QoS Setting
Most routers have different interfaces. So, you might have to look around for QoS. Make sure you check all the tabs under Network, LAN, or Advanced settings. Then once you find the configuration, the rest can be easy as pie.
You will probably be able to see all the devices connected to the router. So, you can find the MAC address of the device you want to prioritize. Then, all you need to do is set the priority to the maximum. Set all other devices on a lower priority, save the settings, and exit.
What If Your Router Doesn’t Have QoS?
Many routers don’t have QoS features. But all is not lost if your router is one of them. Here are some other ways that you can try:
A hardwire connection will always be faster than Wi-Fi. So, you can get an ethernet cable and plug your device straight into the router. It will automatically get the most preference from the router. There are certain drawbacks to this, though. You have to invest in additional equipment like LANs and ethernet cables. Moreover, you need to be close enough to the router.
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If you are too far away from the router, you can use a powerline adapter. These can transmit wired data through existing wires. So, you don’t have to set up additional long cables throughout the house. You can get the same benefits as an ethernet connection but through a different route.