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A router is a piece of network hardware that enables communication with computers, other devices, and the Internet. When it is used in a small area such as a house or something else, it is called a residential gateway.
A router acts as a front line commando by providing the highest level of security like our computer systems and firewalls and preserving the information and information contained in it.
They consist of multiple network ports to connect multiple devices to the Internet in a simultaneous manner.
Emails, web pages, etc. are in the form of data packets, transferred from one router to another through the network, until it reaches the final destination that the router reads in the data header.
New innovations in technologies led to traditional routers being lost in the back of the cupboard or sitting inside a drawer, leaving them unused for years.
Unlike some devices, we can reuse old routers by converting them into reusable devices in the most effective way.
And there is a great need to protect our environment from hazardous e-waste. Improper disposal of our old routers will lead to some effects in the future.
Let’s look at some ways to convert a used router into a useful device.
- Create a smart home hub.
- wireless bridge.
- Cheap Internet Radio.
- Wireless repeater.
- network switch.
- Web server.
Create Smart Home Hub:
Automation plays an important role from vehicle to vehicle used in our home. It makes our lifestyle smarter by using these smart technologies.
Smart technologies can not only be built with new cooler software and hardware. Even they can be built using our old router.
Typically, the router comes with a USB port or serial.
When it comes to USB ports we can use it as OpenWrt or DD-WRT firmware.
In the case of a serial port, it has the ability to be used again as a home automation server.
The router runs the server that is connected to the browser in our smartphone or to other devices based on our convenience.
We can create a simple automation process to use in our home with some devices such as Arduino, RF controllers and used routers.
wireless bridge :
As new innovations emerge every day, most router manufacturers are shifting from traditional routers to modern wireless routers.
In the case of wireless routers, there is usually a lack of an Ethernet port to connect the device via wired transmission methods.
We may need technologies to connect and use wirelessly but in some instances, we may need an Ethernet port to connect devices.
In that fatal situation we can use our old router as a wireless bridge.
By connecting our used router with existing Wi-Fi and connecting the device with an Ethernet port. This will convert our unused router into a wireless bridge for our wireless router.
Cheap Internet Radio:
Tired of frequently using your devices to listen to content from radio stations? Are you planning to create a new device that is capable of connecting to radio stations?
If yes, then this is absolutely for you. We can change our used router to run Internet radio with some configuration.
Some requirements are audio output, software, and a sound card for the installation of OpenWrt or DD-WRT router firmware.
We can update the firmware by updating the updates received from the manufacturer.
There are lots and lots of devices available in the market for using radio.
It won’t be an easy way to compare them, but it does give some information about custom firmware when working with these in our projects.
We had some wireless connectivity options like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi etc. but all these connectivity had some cons like low range coverage.
Even after so much upgrade to wireless technologies, most people may be inconvenienced when they lacked connectivity after a few meters.
Typically, people place Wi-Fi devices inside their home such as routers etc. and in the evening, they used to stay in the gardens for comfort in those situations.
To manage those instances we can use our old router using a Wi-Fi signal with our new wireless device, which will result in higher coverage of the range than before, but with some level of latency.
This is nothing but a delay when receiving a signal from a transmitter.
This is one of the easiest ways to improve the range of coverage using our older routers.
network switch :
Publicity on wireless technologies is increasing day by day. Due to meeting the need of people for upgrading technology to enhance their lifestyle.
But these modern technologies will come to compromise with some goods. Like more connecting ports in traditional gadgets than routers available nowadays.
This drives us out of the ports for Ethernet to connect to different gadgets such as gaming consoles, monitors, smart TVs, and decoders, etc.
Some of these devices lacked wireless technology. It stated the need for a port to connect the device via a wired transmission.
In that case, we can use our old router as a network switch. Additional ports can be plugged into one router and can be combined with new routers to increase our performance.
Web server :
If you want to install WordPress? Interested in testing themes, plugins and new code? If yes, then the old router will work as a server with less specs.
Most traditional routers will have the ability to run DD-WRT or OpenWart and NAS. With the help of custom router firmware, it may be able to create a home-only website or blog to share some information.
We can sell our old routers on platforms such as eBay for some revenue, but it is better not to consider comparing these methods.
These are some ways to effectively use our old router instead of sleeping in a desk for long periods of time without use.
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