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Old 12-09-2003, 05:12 PM   #1   [permalink]
raynebc
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Wireless Cable modem router?

I was considering getting this, so I could share the cable modem with another computer, but the problem is that other computer is down one floor and through a couple of walls. I figure that the likelihood of the signal to make it through that would depend on the strength of the frequency, but I don't know if it would work.

Does anybody know anything about this that could help me?
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Old 13-09-2003, 11:02 AM   #2   [permalink]
Nulani
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What are the floors and walls made of?

From my experience wireless singnals have no problems getting through wood and other light materials, concrete and the like is something entierly different though.

Last edited by Nulani; 13-09-2003 at 11:05 AM.
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Old 13-09-2003, 05:29 PM   #3   [permalink]
raynebc
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I don't really have an idea...

Do you think a computer store would do a refund if I bought it and it turned out not to be powerful enough to get to my other computer?
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Old 14-09-2003, 02:53 AM   #4   [permalink]
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ok, here's a test; punch the wall lightly.

if you feel you can break it if you punch a little harder, is cardboard/wood.
if you feel it like something really heavy, it's probably cement.
if you get a sledgehammer and it still doesn't break, it's very thick concrete.

usually, this shouldn't be a problem unless the open corridors are like 500 metres long to reach the target computer. but then again, if it's concrete, then you'll have to make sure the connection ways are fully open. else, it won't go through.

or, you can be crazy like me and attempt to make your own frequency amplifier. but that's plain idiocy of ruining a perfectly good and new router, and you shouldn't do that.
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Old 14-09-2003, 11:12 PM   #5   [permalink]
raynebc
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I'd take a quick guess it's cement. If you measured how much material the frequency would have to go from point A (cable modem) to point B (computer downstairs), I would imagine it would have to travel at least 40 or 50 feet and maybe 5 to 10 feet of wall and floor material (diagonally going through, not just straight through).

Does anybody think it would work, or do I have to actually try it out in the real world to see?
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Old 14-09-2003, 11:38 PM   #6   [permalink]
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hmmmm

when i had the DLink AirPlus client on my system, i got anywhere between 75% and 95% signal strength (100% link strength). My lil sis is getting 75-80% link strength, 70-80% signal strength with plenty of crap in the way. This is forcing 22Mbit/sec PBCC BTW. you might get better results with 11Mbit/sec DSSS or 5.5Mbit/sec DSSS.

i don't know what it's like right now because the client crashes too often and i'm plenty happy with XP's connection status

If all else fails, get one with a seperate external antenna (as in you can position the antenna away from the computer...). A directional antenna wil get better signal strength (and usually better link strength) and, if you build it yourself, is cheap (and comes with a free snack

My teacher has to bound the signals off a window on the other side of the street....
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Old 17-09-2003, 12:23 AM   #7   [permalink]
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Haha, on the topic of wireless routers, I just found out that a friend of mine's router is being hijacked (well, "shared") by the CS student in her basement apartment. Imagine my surprise when I go over to do a little tech support for her and find that her router has FOUR seperate DHCP clients connected to it, each with a unique MAC address, when they only have 3 comps in the house =P

THIS IS WHY YOU USE WEP AUTHENTICATION!! *smack*
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Old 17-09-2003, 02:43 AM   #8   [permalink]
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Quote:
Originally posted by Antioch-X
THIS IS WHY YOU USE WEP AUTHENTICATION!! *smack*
WEP alone does little...

It takes 5 minutes to crack a 128bit WEP key after about 9 million packets.... 9 million packets isn't a whole lot of packets.... this is after using NetStumbler....

what works better is MAC address limiters in conjunction with as secure a WEP as you can. this encrypts the signal, and doesn't connect NICs with MAC addresses to it.

Even dropping the WEP key to 128bit (i'm running an 802.11b+, which can do a max of 256bit WEP) and giving it to a friend didn't do anything unless i disabled MAC address limiter
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Old 17-09-2003, 09:33 PM   #9   [permalink]
raynebc
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I studied the 2 different yet similar products at a local Walmart. They both have about the same price, and have the same hardware contents, and the same 802.11b specification, so they are obviously no different except for implementation of the specification.

However, one of them admitted I have to have additional hardware. The receiving antenna doesn't come included with the router, which seems obvious now, but when you first look at the box, you almost think it's everything you need, but to me it seemed something was missing.

I basically have to buy $80 worth of equipment if I get it at that store, but I bet I can get a killer price at PriceWatch.com if I looked, maybe I will. Besides the router, I have to get an adapter, which can be a PCI card, or something I can stick into the USB drive. I would probably go with the USB, because it's easy to install (don't have to open my CPU case), and I could use it on another computer if I chose to (without removing any hardware and reinstalling it somewhere else).

The computer-tech guy at the store said he didn't think a few feet of wall wouldn't be such a problem. I guess I'll have to take his word for it, maybe I'll ask somebody at a computer store first, they would probably have better information. What do you guys think?
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Old 18-09-2003, 02:27 AM   #10   [permalink]
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yeah, talk to the more knowledged. i'm not

it shouldn't be a problem, as i said. but just to make sure, do go around and ask.

when you get the USB one, just remember to get a 2.0 one. no point getting any other ones. and make sure your computer can handle 2.0.
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Old 18-09-2003, 12:04 PM   #11   [permalink]
raynebc
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My computer has USB 2 ports, having USB 1 would really suck, kind of like turning a cable connection into a 56k connection.
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Old 25-09-2003, 12:53 AM   #12   [permalink]
nakey
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Quote:
Originally posted by raynebc
My computer has USB 2 ports, having USB 1 would really suck, kind of like turning a cable connection into a 56k connection.
why would it do that?

USB1.1 is 12MBit/sec. 802.11b is 11Mbit/sec. And there's no way you're gonna get 11Mbit/sec sustained anyway

It might be harder, but performance wise the PCI card option is the best option (it's closer to the PCI bus than the USB, which means less additional overheads).

Moving the USB WLAN NIC from one computer to another would still require an install on the other computer.
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Old 25-09-2003, 02:00 PM   #13   [permalink]
raynebc
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That's not what I hear. When I wanted to get an external CD burner, I researched why they couldn't write faster than 4x. It's because that was supposedly the maximum data transfer rate for USB 1.

Besides, the extra time it takes for data to go through the cable (USB2 anyway) is negligible. It is certainly fast enough to write a CD at 40x, which is faster than the 4x I get with my parents' computer (which, may I note, has USB1 ports, explaining why it's 10 times as slow as USB2).
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Old 26-09-2003, 07:45 AM   #14   [permalink]
nakey
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4x =150kbyte/sec * 4 = 600kbyte/sec data transfer rates

Still well under USB1.1 specifications, even with overhead

and i recall the Iomega Predator (which was originally USB1.1) being 8x4x24
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Old 26-09-2003, 09:35 AM   #15   [permalink]
raynebc
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The specifications listing for several external CD burners I looked at said otherwise, but they might be wrong. I think the USB 1 burner I have does burn closer to 8x, but not quite.
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