Improve the USB connection of powerful WiFi antennas in Windows computers and laptops
Introduction on WiFi antennas with USB adapter
When we install a powerful WiFi antenna to a USB port on any Windows computer, disconnection problems may arise. Most of these failures are easy to solve by following a few simple steps. Next we will give the details of the most common solutions to each problem. First we will see the processes necessary to install a WiFi antenna in any Windows operating system and the solution to every common problem that may arise. Here are five tips to improve the installation of WiFi antennas by USB
1 – Installation process of powerful WiFi antennas in Windows systems
All these WiFI antennas with USB adapter need the appropriate driver for each WiFi chip. The driver is usually installed automatically by Windows as soon as it is connected, otherwise it must be installed from the CD that goes in the antenna box. All are compatible in the most modern versions of Windows like Windows 7/8/10. To learn more about driver installation for Windows 8 and Windows 10 see the related article.
2- What to do when Windows does not detect the WiFi antenna?
It may be due to two different failures:
- It does not work but Windows detects it as an installed device. In this case it is necessary to install the driver from the CD. If the Driver is designed for Windows 7 and our version is more current see the article of use of “Mode of compatibility with previous versions of Windows”.
- Windows does not detect the WiFi antenna when it is connected via USB. It can be a problem with the USB cable itself or with the USB port. Test on another USB port and with another cable. If the problem persists it is because the USB port does not have enough power.
3- What to do when the USB port does not have enough power to power the WiFi antenna?
The USB ports of the computers must have at least 500mA output, but sometimes they are not well fed and give less, it is a common problem in some laptops. The problem of lack of power is more common in the front USB ports. It is better to always connect the WiFi antennas to the rear ports of the PC as they are powered directly from the motherboard. On PCs it is better to always use the rear USB ports
To improve the power supply, high-power antennas like the Melon N400 with 10 meters of USB cable have two USB connectors. Sometimes it is necessary to connect a USB WiFi amplifier that amplifies the amperage and solves the installation of all WiFi antennas with more than 5 meters of USB cable.
When the antenna fails to connect to Windows but after a few seconds it switches off and reconnects, it is usually because the antenna works fine but the power supply is failing. The solution is to unroll the cable well and connect the two USB power connectors, in addition to adding the USB cable amplifier Melon PW-916 will be a definitive solution.
Another remedy is to connect a plug-in USB HUB so that you can connect several USB devices to the same computer and all with good electrical connection.
4- What to do when the antenna is properly installed in Windows but it does not detect many WiFi networks?
This problem in general is not because of malfunction of the antenna, but because of an incorrect location. To improve the detection of WiFi networks, follow these steps:
- Place the WiFi antenna in a high location and away from other electrical devices
- Avoid connection through thick walls, especially if they have metal barriers inside
- If the antenna is a directional type, always direct the front to the point you want to connect to. If it is necessary to make an alignment of the antenna with precision you have to follow the tips of tools necessary for the orientation of WiFi antennas.
- If the antenna is standard 2dbi replace it with another one with more gain between 12dbi and 36dbi.
- We must remember that in the same location, different models see more or less networks of the environment. This phenomenon is not very significant since it depends on the sensitivity of the internal chip. The most important thing is that the WiFI antenna manages to connect and the connection is not cut after established.
5- What cable is appropriate to extend a powerful WiFI antenna?
When we want to extend a WiFi antenna to place it in the window there are two possibilities: one is to lengthen the coaxial antenna cable and another the USB cable of the WiFi adapter. It is advisable to always extend the USB cable since it has no loss of signal quality. In case of lengthening the antenna cable it is better not to put more than 3 meters of coaxial cable, so the loss will be minimal.
To extend the USB cable there is no distance limit in theory, but from 10 meters there may be a power problem and the USB WiFi receiver can be turned off as we have already described. The best tricks are to use the Melon PW-916 USB cable amplifier or install a powered USB Hub.
To extend the USB cable of the powerful USB WiFi antennas, it is advisable to use an active USB extension cable that can connect up to 20 meters.
If you are going to carry out a installation of homemade or professional WiFi antennas, we recommend reading the complete guide of tips for buying WiFi antennas in the online store of WiFi products.