How to test my modem. Does it need replacing?
If your modem looks like the one below, it certainly does need replacing.
This is a picture of a 56k dial-up modem from the last century.
Assuming that your are not receiving Internet speeds near or above the average for your area (how to test your internet speed) we show you some steps to follow to test, tweak and possibly replace your Modem or Modem-Router.
Step 1) Replace your modem if more than 3 years old
Technology marches on pretty quickly these days. And at only $200 or less it’s cost efficient to replace your modem to a new one every few years.
The box or boxes that connect to your phone line and then to your computer or WI-FI devices are known as a “Modem” or a “Modem-Router” or sometimes a “Wi-Fi Modem Router”
Today one box does both jobs as per these examples.
A few years ago you needed two separate boxes as per this example.
If your current setup resembles this example then upgrading to a new modern “Modem-Router” will vastly improve your Internet performance. You should do this as a first step
However, all modems are not built the same and spending a few extra dollars can improve your speed, especially WI-FI speed.
If you do not need a land-line, you have more flexibility. Modems supplied by your ISP or NBN provider can often be improved upon, however Telstra modems do provide a 4G fall-back option which means you will always have some internet, even if the NBN service fails.
Another feature of ISP supplied modems is their poor Wi-Fi capabilities that may supply a reasonably strong Wi-Fi signal into the next room, but not much further.
For powerful Wi-Fi through the house consider one of these options.
If your NBN technology is HFC, FTTP or FTTC, consider replacing your old modem with one of these
Step 2) Reboot your Modem/Router/NBN Box at least once per week
It’s the stock advice, but it solves an astonishing number of problems.
And if you have an NBN Connection box such as this
also restart that at the same time as restarting your modem
Step 3) Check for Modem Firmware Upgrades Regularly
Manufactures often have newer firmware or drivers for wireless access points than what comes with the device. Ensuring you are using the latest of both can often improve both the stability and speeds of your wireless network.
So it pays to check for a “Firmware” (the software embedded in the modem) update or upgrade periodically.
To do so. Access the admin page of your router by entering your default Internet Gateway or DHCP Gateway address into the address bar of your modem.
For information on how you can find this information, click here “How to find the ip address of my Internet Gateway or DHCP Gateway”
Once found, enter the Internet Gateway or DHCP Gateway IP address into the address bar of any browser
If the IP address is correct, you will be prompted to login
If you do not know the specific login and password try:
User Name: admin
User Name: admin
Once logged into your modem’s admin interface you can do lots of things but we advise you NOT to change anything unless you know what you are doing. It should look something like the following but will differ according to make and model.
The above shows options available on different modems to perform a Router-Upgrade or Firmware-Upgrade to your Modem-Router
If in doubt, look at the documentation supplied with your modem-router
Need expert help in fixing Internet & Wi-Fi Issues and live in Perth, Western Australia then call The IT Guys (WA) on 08 6365 5603
Step 4) Upgrade to a NBN, Fibre or Fixed Wireless connection.
If none of the above works, you may have no alternative but to Upgrade to NBN, Fibre or Fixed Wireless connections
For a small fee we can remotely login to your computer, run the tests and present to your results and alternatives by email. For this to happen you need to be on a computer physically connected to the modem (by Ethernet wire, not wireless) and be available on that computer between 8.30 and 5pm, Monday to Friday). If we cannot complete the tests remotely, we will need to come to your home or office.
If you would like us to perform the Internet Testing Service, please call 08 6365 5603 and make a booking.
If you would like The IT Guys(WA) to analyse, test and advise you on how to fix any of the above issues, click on Internet and Wi-Fi Testing and Consultancy Services where we offer paid remote on on-site services.
Need more help?
Covid-19 Update: Business as usual for workshop repairs, remote support and onsite support.
If you live in Western Australia, and you need any kind of computer help, please bring your computer to us at 315 Rokeby Road, Subiaco, Western Australia or call us out. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call:
For instant remote control sessions, follow the instructions found on this page