I have been asked to set up a 4 node wireless network for a small private business.
I have never done this before and have been attempting to do as much research as possible, but I can't seem to get what I need, so...
What I am trying to understand is: What is the difference between a Wireless Access Point, a Wireless Router and a Wireless Cable/DSL Router? Can anyone recommend some equipment? Cost and ease of set up are most important factors.
They will be sharing a database type application running on one system and accessed from the other three. There is also a DSL connection which could be shared on the network.
ANY and ALL advice is appreciated!!!
what you'll need, as I understand from you explanation, is a Wireless Cable/DSL router.
But first an explanation:
Wireless Cable/DSL router:
you connect it to your cable or xDSL connection. On the device you have networkports (typically 4 or 8,...) that you can use to connect the PC's in the LAN. The router will route (="handle") the traffic between the PC, the intranet and the internet. The device also has antennas for wireless routing with f.e. a portable or a PC with a wireless networkcard (=networkcard with antenna instead of network connector).
So this enables you to share the intranet and internet for PC's and portables in the network.
It's a "router" because it can "handle" the networktraffic and pass it to and from the stations.
Wireless Access Point:
as opposed to a router this device can not route the network traffic. Another device (a PC or a router or a wireless router) has to take care of this. So you have to connect the access point to such a PC or router. It will then enable you to have wireless communication in the network, but you cannot connect other PC's to it with networkcables.
So in this case you have to configure a PC or router first in the network, and then you can use the access point for wireless communication. (It's also used to extent the reach of a wireless access router.)
I don't see any difference with a wireless cable/DSL router. It's a more general term. You can have f.e. also a wireless ISDN router...
There are 3 wireless standards (if I'm correct):
11Mb/s, 22Mb/s and 54MB/s. So there's a difference in wireless network speed. The speed over cable will be 10/100 as usual.
I have myself a D-LINK 614+ AirPlus Wireless Cable/DSL router. It operates at 22MB/s for wireless connection (if the wireless networkcard in the portable/PC is also from the AirPlus type!). I use it to share 1 Windows PC, 1 Linux box and one portable (wireless) on the network and to connect them to the internet via cable. Works great.
It's not difficult to setup this router. You access it via a browser of a PC connected to the device. You can setup DNS, filtering, encryption, DMZ,... I had no trouble so far.
Remember that for wireless communication the infrastructure of the building is of relevance. If you have 1 meter-thick-walls or rooms encapsulated in metal, you'll have trouble ;-). I can use my portable all around the house and in the backyard.
If your signal weakens, the networkspeed will lower (or drop in the worst case).
You can check for reviews, specs and comparisons of wireless routers on f.e. ZDnet.com or other sites. Just search for wireless or wi-fi...
Hope this helps,
Last edited by eszet; May 16th, 2003 at 09:03 AM.
It sure does! Thanx Stef.
So it looks like I am in need of a Wireless DSL/Cable Router and at least one adapter (two computers will be sitting side by side.)
I have been checking ZDNet as well as CNET, but have come to any consense on what manufacturer to lean toward. The techno-geek at Best Buy steered me toward LinkSys, but I haven't seen many reviews of their products. Most of the press appears to lean toward NetGear.
Stef mentioned D-Link, does anyone else have an opinion on specific hardware?
September 6th, 2003, 04:41 PM
I just bought a bunch of stuff from Belkin - REFURBISHED! - but with a LIFETIME WARRANTY for much less than half price!! ENJOY!
September 8th, 2003, 03:23 AM
I have used the DL-614+ and it has worked wonderfully at my former office. At home I use a Netgear MR814 and it works just as well.
That;s my $.02
October 1st, 2003, 12:35 AM
I've been setting up 40 regional doctor offices(approx 115 WAPs, 600 clients) on wireless networking (they all have IPAQs and TabletPCs.) It's been decently painless with the exception of having to use Intel products and having no support (Intel is out of the wireless business.)
So just as a warning: a. you get what you pay for and b. make sure the brand you get, will be supporting these products in 3 years. If you're doing this for a company, I'd suggest that you look into the Cisco products.
November 26th, 2003, 02:35 PM
I apologise in advance for the newbie question, but when it comes to wireless networking I am a very n00 n00b indeed. I will shortly be signing up with a wireless broadband company in my area, and I was going to use the d-link DWL-900AP+ as my access point, in client mode. This would connect wirelessly to the ISP. Then I'd connect to my PC using crossover network cable and use my PC as the router for the rest of the network. However, I saw the DI-614+ and wondered if I could use this as an access point and a router? I see it has 2 antennae so I take it to mean that this can connect to two separate wireless networks. So can I use one end of this to connect to my ISP and the other end to transmit to any wireless devices I might have in my LAN? Also I would be using normal network cables from the 614+ to go the the normal ethernet stuff in my LAN.
As you can probably tell, I am extremely new to this WIFI malarkey and the many devices out there are confusing me. I hope this question is intelligible, and I hope someone can answer it for me! I don't want to go wasting my money to find the device can't do what I want it to.
Thanks in advance,
EDIT: What I suppose I mean is can the DI-614+ operate as a client on one antenna and as a router on the other, simultaneously?
Last edited by Jhonbus; November 26th, 2003 at 02:40 PM.
November 26th, 2003, 02:40 PM
a) you should of really started a new thread
b) antenna don't really count, they are probably wired together internally...
c) you should be able to use normal cat5 cable to connect PCs to the router, and can probably setup wireless network from the same unit - however I have never used a wireless ISP before...
November 26th, 2003, 03:23 PM
Yeah what you said about the antennae makes sense - the Revision A model has 2 but the Rev.B only has one. I can't make up my mind about whether or not this will work, I assume as long as the router can be configured by DHCP through the wireless connection, it will work. But since I don't even have any wireless devices yet I'll probably just get the 900AP+ and then get another one if I ever get any wireless stuff. The 614+ is hardly any more expensive than the 900AP+ so it seems too good to be true. So it probably is.
Think I'll go for the 900AP+.
Nice forums by the way, I think I'll stick around.
November 26th, 2003, 03:42 PM
November 26th, 2003, 04:33 PM
Actually I'm going to go for the 900AP (not AP+) as so far as I can see it's the same but with a max speed of 11mbps rather than 22. Since my data rate will be limited to 512k by the ISP anyway I may as well use this.