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Comcast and wireless routers

by crazythomas / July 27, 2007 6:23 AM PDT

I live in Augusta, GA and am getting Comcast high speed internet next week. I have two laptops, a Toshiba running Windows XP and a Sony Vaio running Windows Vista, both have built in wireless b/g. I was wondering if anyone could tell me which wireless router to get. I just need the simplest one to use as I am not the most tech savy person in the world. I would love it if someone could point me in the right direction of which brand, (Belkin, Buffalo, D-Link, Linksys, or NetGear) and also if I need MIMO or not. I just want a 200 ft. or so range. It does not have to be the most expensive or newest one, just something simple that I could set up and use without any hiccups.

Thank you for any help you could give.

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Download the
by jackintucson / July 27, 2007 6:37 AM PDT
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still confused...
by crazythomas / July 27, 2007 7:59 AM PDT
In reply to: Download the
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The chart..
by jackintucson / July 27, 2007 8:57 AM PDT
In reply to: still confused...

I referenced will tell you which routers meet your distance requirements. There are probably more than a few that do that. Find out which ones are carried at your store(s) and select the best one. Not all routers that are carried at one store are carried at their sister stores.

I've used Belkin for a few years but not at 200ft.

and life goes on...

Jack

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to actually answer...
by y0Lorenzo / July 27, 2007 3:22 PM PDT

hopefully i can provide a little more insight than a link and an explanation of the link.................

if all you want is interet access for your laptops, well then you could go with a wireless B (11mbps) router which is still probably way faster than your internet connection, but they sell those widely anymore, so you should get a wireless G.

however if you, likemyself tend to send files across your network (especially larger ones) then you may want wireless G (54mbps) definitely or a draft n (100-300mbps) router.

for example, i just got a D-Link DSM-510 network media player. so now i've gotten into "streaming video." i NEEEEED all the speed and extra bandwidth i can get. so i want a Wireless N router with a Gigabit swich. but then i maaaay be a bit on the advanced end of the spectrum.

in theory... its all "easy to setup." in practice, i have purched linksys routers (wireless b, g and soon an n), and they seem to work... pretty good with limitations.

main limitation. I dont know of ANY brand or standard (a,b,g,n... mimo or otherwise) that can reach 200 feet.... the wireless N routers or routers with MIMO are supposed to have the best range. but Cnet's tests say they get reeally slow at around the 160' mark. take into account walls, microwave, cordless phones, whatever gear your neighbors have... that figure can fall rapidly further...

what i've found. none of this stuff works ALL the time, sometimes i have to unplug-plugin my router to reset it and evrything gets going again. i live in a roughly 2000+ sq ft house. most of the time it says i have "very good" to "excellent" coverage anywhere in the house. but sometimes it conks out.

im looking into upgrading soon from a Linksys WRT54G to a Linksys WRT350N for the extended range/speed. its a bit expensive but hopefully worth it.

AS FOR A RECOMMENDATION.

you sound like you want something realllly simple.

D-Link's "Rangebooster G Wireless Router"
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/D-Link-Rangebooster-G-Wireless-Router-WBR2310/sem/rpsm/oid/147500/catOid/-12980/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do
seems to be a good deal at circuit city.

unless you prefer to "walk in, walk out" of a brick and mortar store with your purchase... i ALWAYS look at Amazon.com first... usually no tax, free shipping. and if that isnt enough, usually their prices are actually better than CC and best buy (even befooore the no tax/free shipping!!!) and they are a reputable store.

the router im looking at is 163.99 on amazon, no tax free shipping. its 179.99 at circuit city plus tax, and i actually have to drive to the store and deal with the pimply-faced teenagers they call store-reps to get it..... no brainer for me.

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also
by y0Lorenzo / July 27, 2007 3:35 PM PDT

one more thing...

make SURE you learn a little bit about how to set up WPA encryption with a really long and complicated key. and maybe "mac address filtering" you want your network protected.

it would be good to familiarize yourself with windows xp's "wireless network setup wizard." and whatever the windows vista counterpart.. it makes setting it up on multiple computers a breeze if you have a usb flashdrive.

and just a reminder... i have comcast cable internet. we get free mcafee virus scan/firewall software and updates as long as we have their service on up to 8 different computers...

wpa encryption, network setup wizard, and virus scan/firewall software with updates are all hand in hand with wireless internet.

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thank you..
by crazythomas / July 27, 2007 10:36 PM PDT
In reply to: also

Thank you for your input and help. It sems that people have a lot of trouble with wireless routers, on the CC website there are some very good and some very bad reviews for each one. So I guess I will just buy the one I can get the best deal on and hope for the best...

Thank You.

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be skeptical of reviews
by y0Lorenzo / July 28, 2007 2:58 AM PDT
In reply to: thank you..

I take reviews with a grain of salt with some products...

Some reviews are SOOOOO terrible against mfgs with good reputations for quality that I personally wouldn't believe all of them. Some reviews I've actually seen 100% duplicates on OTHER websites.....

With most of the major players, you can get a good product: D-Link, Netgear, Belkin, Linksys, Buffalo, Trendnet

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Be Careful
by phantomsoul / August 6, 2007 4:43 AM PDT
In reply to: thank you..

Especially with the basic entry-level home routers, as what you pay for is usually what you get. At the bottom of the price ladder are usually the DLinks, which work well for the most part, but are notorious for stability problems, causing them to burp and need to be reset from time to time. This might seem trivial at first, but gets very annoying very fast, as when it happens, it also knocks all your computers offline.

At the other end of the spectrum are the Linksys routers, which, for the most part work very well and have good stability. However, Linksys routers also usually carry the highest price tags between all routers with similar feature sets.

I guess at the end of the day, you just have to decide how much you want to spend.

The only other thing that I wanted to mention is that wireless networks are sometimes prone to interference (which usually, in effect will randomly knock your computer offline), most commonly from 2.4GHz cordless phones present in the same airspace as the wireless network. While it might not be fatal to the computer wireless network, if yo do have problems with it, you might want to upgrade the cordless phones to 5.8GHz.

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