Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Restrict Roommates Internet Use

Quick Tip — Use Your Router’s Advanced Features For Best Use Of Shared Connections

If you are in a house with multiple computers, and you want to restrict “the amount of Internet” those other machines use, you can use settings (aka “options”) in your router and give yourself #1 priority.

Today’s topic comes from a question from a (younger) fella who lives with roommates, and they all “share” his connection. Which is fine with him except for when their online activity slows down his surfing or online gaming.
So he wanted to know how to make sure he got “first dibs”. (Though I confess, he called it “more bandwidth”.)

Tip of the day: Use your router’s advanced abilities to limit other computers’ Internet usage.

1) Open your browser and access the router’s Control Panel. (for instructions, see Protecting-your-network – use-your-router-for-access-control)


2) Find the Advanced Settings tab for “QoS” (Quality of Service).
On a Linksys router, that is under “Applications and Gaming”, but yours may have a different name.

3) Give your PC’s MAC Address a rating of “Highest”
* To get the MAC, open a command prompt (Start >Programs >Accessories) on your machine and enter “ipconfig /all” {no quotes}. Look for “Physical Address”. A MAC address will look like 01-23-45-67-8A-9B.

* Note: You might also want to set other machines to “low”.

4) Enable, Save, and exit.

That’s it, your done. Now your Internet “data packets” will go first, and any other Internet user will have to wait for your request to finish.

[note: there are some other priority tweaks you can make here too. Click on the image to see large version, and note my arrows.]

Today’s free download: EncryptOnClick is a very simple to use program that lets you securely encrypt and decrypt files… basically, with a click.

[addenda: You can further limit the amount of bandwidth your roommates use by setting keyword and website blocking that will cripple their P2P file downloading and video watching — the two biggest bandwidth hogs. The access control article (above) has the How To.]

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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February 18, 2009 - Posted by | advice, computers, hardware, how to, Internet, networking, performance, routers, routers and WAPs, tech, tweaks | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. TechPaul,

    Where do you come up with this stuff? This is great info. I personally was unaware of the priority settings.

    Thanks for sharing!



    Comment by whatsonmypc | February 18, 2009 | Reply

    • Rick,
      I thank you for the nice comment.
      I believe that students with freeloading roommates, and parents whose children have discovered BitTorrent will find this quite useful.


      Comment by techpaul | February 18, 2009 | Reply

  2. techpaul

    this is real nice & i am aware of the above but was somewhat clueless on its execution so thanks a lot for that info.

    keep up the good work,



    Comment by Constance | February 19, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you Constance. The two articles, together, should explain a router’s advanced capabilities and make them usable by everyone. Whether that’s to place restrictions on children (parental control), or set an online game to take precedence over Adobe Updater..


      Comment by techpaul | February 19, 2009 | Reply

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