Need a wlan solution for old Pentium I PC

A friend of mine has an old Pentium I 200Mhz PC with Win 98 SE that he has asked me to connect to his existing WLAN.

The PC has no USB port.

I have tried to install a Topcom PCI card, but later learned that his PC most probably only has support for PCI ver 2.1 (I think), and the Topcom demanded PCI ver 2.2. It installed without any error messages, but never worked (the green light on the card didn't light up, and the config software never detected any signals).

I have now found another card, the CNet CNWL-311 802.11b. The specs don't say anything about which version PCI it supports, but it being a 802.11b and not g (as the Topcom) led me to assume that it might support older PCI ports...

Does anyone know if the CNet CNWL-311 will work in an old Pentium I

200Mhz computer? (I'd hate to buy yet another card that doesn't work!)

Link to info about the card:

formatting link
Any tips on other cards that will work are also appreciated!

Thanks, Christopher

Reply to
Christopher Grenness
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Haven't run into that, but there are quite a few cards out there that only support verions of windows *other* than win 98... The card you are looking at, doesn't seem to have that problem.... Software Support . MS Windows

98SE/ME/2000/XP Not sure what model card you have, but I did a search for it, and the one that popped up said: Wireless speed: up to 54 Mbps ... ME / 2000 / XP Notice no Windows 98SE....
Reply to
Peter Pan

Here's what I use on my P1/200 mHz + Win98se:

formatting link
No driver, no problems.


Reply to

Chris , TWO Options:

option 1: looks like you need an old card, try getting an ISA type or ISA PCMCIA, then utilise a PCMCIA card to plug into it (pref older 16bit type)

I too found that 200Mhz CPU is NOT good (FAST) enough for PCI types :S

option 2:

Buy a faster computer.....


Reply to

"Christopher Grenness" wrote in

Hmm. How about getting a cheap USB PCI card for the PC and an external USB wireless adapter? A small external USB wireless adapter would probably give more re-usability, should your friend ever want to use it with another computer. Plus, its just a simple and easy convienent device. Wouldn't mind having one myself, even. A while back, I read about one of these animals that also has "onboard software" that run from the host PC. Pretty cool, just plug n' play into an USB port. No need for software/drivers on the host PC, everything was available right from the adapter. It was costly though, like $180. External USB adapter without the "integrated software" are much cheaper. (Or, for all I know, maybe all of them are doing the integrating thing now. Haven't read about them for a while.)

If you get a USB PCI card that is just 1.0 (they can be found cheap), I wouldn't worry about a wireless adapter that can do anything more than standard 802.11b (11 MBS). USB 1.0 tops out at 12 MBS anyway. If all your friend is wanting to do is interneting, thats more than efficient. If he/she is planning to use the computer as a fileserving dumb box (old computers are great for that!), then may want to consider USB 2.0 along with

802.11g/b, etc...
Reply to

Thanks, I hadn't thought of that option. I even have an Asus wl-330 (b, not g) and an old USB PCI card (moat likely a USB 1.1, not demanding PCI

2.2), so I'll try to combine the two...


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