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How do I know if my router is out of date and I need to change it?

Surely the most important element of our home network is the router. This electronic equipment has the mission of establishing communication with the Internet and also facilitates the exchange of information between the devices connected to that LAN. It should also be noted that a modern router can offer us the possibility of having many extra services in our home or office. Some examples would be having a VPN server, a print server, a Samba server, or an FTP server. However, there comes a time when that router falls short for our needs. In this article we are going to learn to distinguish if I have an obsolete router and if I should change it for another, knowing some indications that we will indicate below.

Reasons to consider changing the router

The router, as we have already mentioned before, is a very important and essential element for our local network. Regardless of whether the router is obsolete, it must be taken into account that this network equipment is normally working 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during practically the whole year. In this aspect, it can suffer significant wear over time. For example, in summer and when working at a higher temperature, heating can take its toll on its components. To that we also have to add the considerable workload to which they are sometimes subjected.

Although the router works well, other factors to take into account are that technologies change and computer attacks as well. For this reason, especially if our router is already quite a few years old and is from an operator or lower-middle range, it is very likely that we have an obsolete router. Regardless of how well it works, it may not be ready for new protocols and may have vulnerabilities that can be exploited by cybercriminals. At the time that the manufacturer or operator stops updating the firmware of that router, more and more security flaws will start appearing that are not going to be fixed. This and some more are the reasons why you should consider changing your router when the firmware is no longer supported.

Do I have an outdated router?

We have more and more equipment connected to the Internet from smartphones, tablets, Smart TVs, smart plugs and other home automation devices. In the Ethernet section, that is, by network cable, we do not believe that we are going to have problems. The fiber optic routers distributed to date are Gigabit Ethernet and since most Internet connections do not exceed 1 Gbps, we will not have any problems. On the other hand, regarding the Wi-Fi connection, yes, since we have more and more devices that connect wirelessly in this way.

ASUS RT-AX53U Wi-Fi router front

An important aspect is that I am going to have a obsolete router when i have one outdated specifications or does not offer me enough security. It should be noted that we do not necessarily have to spend €300 on a high-class router, simply by buying a mid-range one the improvement will be important. The minimum characteristics that your new or current router should have would be these:

  1. That it is dual band and supports both 2.4GHz and 5Ghz.
  2. At least that it supports the 802.11 ac standard that corresponds to Wi-Fi 5. However, if we can better that it complies with the 802.11.ax standard that is Wi-Fi 6.
  3. Minimum Gigabit Ethernet ports.
  4. The router has support for technologies such as MU-MIMO and OFDMA (already included in WiFi 6)
  5. Have advanced settings in your firmware. Some manufacturers that have it are AVM FRITZ! Box, ASUS, D-Link, NETGEAR or QNAP among others.

A test that can reveal that you need to change your Wi-Fi router is to enter the router configuration via the web and see since when the firmware has not been updated. If it has been several years without doing it and it cannot be updated, we find ourselves with an obsolete router. Finally, if when we use several Wi-Fi devices at the same time we see that they are slow and that the wireless network is saturated, it is also indicating that our device is becoming outdated.

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