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Digital Living – Advice September 2020

Working From Home – Part 1

The new reality for the foreseeable future for many of us will be working from home.

To maximise your productivity but also make life a bit easier I will over the coming months provide some suggestions I hope will help to make the process easier.


This is one of the key components in the mix and if the performance is weak it can make working from home a painful experience. Consider the following step if you are experiencing poor performance over wifi and you’ve checked your broadband speed. The caveat as with any solution is to identifying the issue is the first step. On possible solution is outlined below:

Wired Broadband Connection

This doesn’t mean stringing a long cable from the hallway to your sitting room!

You can purchase adapters that use the electrical wiring in your house to carry the wired (Ethernet) signal from the modem to your work area. This solution will only work if your computer has an Ethernet port, many newer laptops don’t have them. You can purchase an adapter for the laptop but that’s another discussion entirely.

These devices are called Powerline network adapters. I recommend the non wifi models with a built in plug if possible. Models with a wifi can put additional traffic load on the connection that is not needed. Keep it simple.

There are a few caveats on these devices:

  1. They don’t always work as they are subject to how your electric cable is wired.
  2. They don’t work well or at all when plugged into electrical extensions.

(Fyi: Fire officers really dislike electrical extensions as they are a fire hazard)

  1. From time to time you will need to pair the devices as they can lose connectivity.
  2. They provide a reduced speed as opposed to a cable connection but they should still outperform your wifi connection and be more stable.
  3. Be aware of fire hazards by ensuring you don’t overload the sockets where you use these items.
  4. Check them for excessive heat and if you have any concerns contact an electrician to ensure your sockets are wired correctly.
  5. You will need two Ethernet cables – one to connect to the modem and the other for your pc.

If you have areas you would like to see articles on about home working drop me a whatsapp with your suggestion and if I get enough interest I will do an article.

Wishing you all the best. Please stay safe.

Oliver Reidy is a computer technician and has been in the industry since 1981.You can contact him via email at, by the telephone numbers listed on this page, and whatsapp @08779707040.  This article, and all previous articles, are available to view online at or

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