Best wireless router & cards for high-speed cable connection?

The other thing about wireless, it it's often left "unsecured". They did a news story here where a reporter and a guy with a laptop drove around various areas looking for open connections.. It was quite interesting.

A chunk of enet cable won't be hacked unless someone's in you house and not a 100' away.

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AZ Woody
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Check to see that the routers are WIFI Certified (for interoperability between brands).

I have seen issues where a DLINK router has had problems maintaing a connection with an Intel wireless card that was integrated into a Toshiba Laptop. Changed the router out with a WIFI certified router and all worked consistently since...


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I have just received a new Dell 8400 WinXP Media Center system (3.4 GHz, 2 GB RAM, TV tuner card). I have a fast (~4600 kbps) cable connection (Adelphia internet and TV).

My main need is to connect my old computer, now in an adjacent room, to the Internet. Am guessing that the best way is through a wireless router. The walls are not thick, and should not be a problem.

If a wireless router is the best solution, what is the best one? There seem to be three good deals available online, but am not sure which, if any, would be the smartest purchase:

ViewSonic 802.11b/g 125HSM Wireless Network Router (Mfr# WR100) » only $29.99 Shipped

D-Link DI-524 802.11G 54Mbps Wireless Cable/DSL Router 4-Port Switch » only $19.99 + Free Shipping

Buffalo Airstation 54MBPS Wireless Cable/DSL Router (Mfr# WYR-G54) » only $18.10 + Free Shipping

Also, what card(s) would be needed for both computers?

Thanks for all suggestions.

P.S. Second question, please: What would be the best way to not only connect that 2nd computer to the Internet but also to connect the TV in that room to my main Media Center computer? Dell offers a solution

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but the $399 seems excessive (perhaps I'm wrong, of course).

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I find wireless way to flakey a connection. Do yourself a favour and punch a small hole in the wall and run some ethernet wire in there. You'll save yourself a lot of headaches.

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Cats Ass

Agreed, that is the "best way".

Any of the routers he listed should work though, and then any decent name-brand card in the remote system. That's bad for filesharing and backup purposes though, the wired option is again the best when possible.

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The best solution there is to forget that you have the media center PC and connect the other one to the TV via video card with TV-Out, and connect the two systems by wire, not wireless. Wireless will inherantly be slower and suject to occasional dropouts. The slower part also reduces the quality you can send to the TV from the media center PC, but is again a reason not to use low-quality high compression rather pulling the files across the wired lan to be played by the PC next to the TV.

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Check out US Robotics. Never had a problem with them. Also they had a firmware upgrade a while back bringing speeds from 100mbs to 125mbs. You should be able to find the 8054 for under $70. Security is TOP NOTCH. Here's a link.

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I own a USR 8054, and a pair of 5416 PCI cards. The router & PCI cards have fantastic range and a good strong signal, but the downside is the firmware from USR never seems to really resolve the problems. The "125Mbps" hack is basically combining jumbo frames and bleeding over the bandwidth of other neighboring channels, you wont see actual 125Mbps numbers of course as all network numbers are grossly inflated, but relative to without it it is an improvement.

There are the usual limits of the firewall in it, is does not do stateful inspection, & limited number of firewall/forwarding rules "20", not as much of a problem if you use WinXP and plug-n-play aware aps, but I have to use severial proxies for my windows 2000 network to get around its limitations. *No syn/ack flood protection*, extremely limited lookup table memory, very easy to kick offline if you know how to attack it. Hardware wise its a Dlink Di-624, and there is a hack to run their firmware with it (not supported of course) that claims to take care of some of the stability problems with the penalty of losing turbo mode (I haven't used it myself). The Dlink Di-624 users are sometimes using the

8054 firmware to get the speed boost. Pick your poison I suppose.

I had to RMA the first one I got after about 9 months, it had always ran much hotter than the replacement so maybe it was just defective from the get-go, no problems RMAing with them (2 weeks turnaround). At that time they advertised WPA & 100Mbps and it didn't do either, even with the firmware update. They did fix speed issue within a few months, but it was almost another year before WPA support became available. Currently WPA-PSK is so hopelessly broken & unstable that I can't use it, and I'm not the only one having problems. The forums at broadband reports are full of the same complaints: Router resets randomly, frequent reboots, WPA-still-broken-after-XXX-& XXX-firmware update, Odyssey drivers for the 5416 & 5410 unstable and wont reconnect even after reboots of the computer (in WPA mode).

My opinion is, if you need WPA or WPA-PSK get something else. If you aren't using windows, get something else - though most of the rules can now be changed within other browsers, it still doesn't behave correctly for all function outside of IE, aside from which the only driver support for linux is through a third party wrapper for their PCI/PCMIA cards. If you can live happily with WEP 256 bit security till/if they finally get WPA right, it isn't a bad choice for what you get considering its cost. I wont be buying another one though, I've had far too many headaches with this one.

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There are a ton of issues to watch out for with wifi. The distances/ construction materials, the inerference in the 2.4 ghz band (cordless phones, microwaves etc) not to mention the security issues. At least look into using WEP 128 on the device at minimum. And as mentioned above look for a wifi certified Rtr/AP and cards so they should play nice together. Speeds will be nowhere near a cabled connection, but those are the drawbacks of wireless....


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I had a Dlink router/WAP for all of a week before I returned and got my money back I got a belkin instead which has been good I run it with a RaLink PCi card. You might find that cat5 is a better option as other posters have said. I have found wifi to be extremely tempremental.

Reply to
star spangled spanner

I have a 8054 from usr

it will not support more then 50 connection at a time.. so if you have a teen at home that like to share file on p2p it will always reset when the 50 or so connection limit is reached

I now is it as an Access Point and have a computer that run Smoothwall (a small Linux distro) that is doing all my routing needs... much more stable..and secure.. and the best thing about using a small computer for the router is that it can be modified easily,and if it fail parts are available anywhere..(I use a 350 MHz PII with 128 mb of ram and its not even using 3% of its whole capacity)

even a 75mhz P1 can be used if the web proxy server is off..

but for the range and speed of the wireless it is true that USR are faster if you use all USR product if another brand is use it will downgrade every connection to 54g max

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If you are having frequent reset problems its probably hardware and not software. It has come to my attention that they have a problem with bad capacitors (leaky/bulging), and very often the resets are due to that. Now the hard part is convincing USR to RMA your router.

Mine doesn't reset on P2P aps. The connection will freeze if I get a substantial flood attack as each connection takes up memory, but that is a slightly different circumstance. I can emule if I want to, I have set a limit of 80 connections for it, and it is stable doing that. 50 isn't a real limit.

The previous 8054 I had to RMA had heat problems and demonstrated the behavior you are describing. It wasn't stable on Emule at all, and frequently would reset all on its own.

Just something to look into.

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If they won't replace it, shouldn't be too hard to replace a few caps and/or find a way to add a fan. An inaudible fan may well resolve capacitor failure issues (if those caps aren't overly heat-stressed yet), as often in such small poorly ventilated chassis it is the heat moreso than cap being defective (in and of itself) causing early demise.

Sometimes it seems difficult to add a fan- a hole saw might come in handy.

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