NetGear FWG114P ProSafe 802.11g Wireless Firewall w/4 Port 10/100 Switch and USB Print Server review: NetGear FWG114P ProSafe 802.11g Wireless Firewall w/4 Port 10/100 Switch and USB Print Server

Netgear's wireless firewall has the right feature set for a modern home office. It comes with ISDN/modem auto failover to keep you connected via a phone line if your broadband line goes down, Dynamic DNS so that Internet users can find your services even if you receive a dynamic IP address from your ISP, a DMZ that allows you to place a computer or server outside your firewall, and a 100Mbps WAN port to support faster broadband connections in the future. The wireless firewall's USB print server feature lets you connect a supported USB printer and share it among your networked computers. While the print server feature works with only specific printers, the &siteid=7&edid=&lop=txt&destcat=ex&destUrl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Enetgear%2Ecom%2Fproducts%2Ffwg114p%5Fusb%2Ehtml" target="_blank">list is long and includes models from Canon, Compaq, Epson, HP, and Lexmark. The wireless firewall also supports universal plug and play and has a remote-access feature that lets you configure and reset the device via a connection over the Internet.

The Netgear FWG114P wireless firewall print server places in the top three in all of our throughput tests to date. Second only to the U.S. Robotics 8054 in our 802.11g throughput testing, the wireless firewall reached a maximum throughput of 25Mbps. In mixed-mode testing with 802.11b transmissions, the wireless firewall topped out at 12.5Mbps, placing it higher than most other products we've tested but significantly lower than both the U.S. Robotics 8054 and the Dell Wireless 2300.

CNET Labs maximum throughput tests  (Longer bars indicate better performance)
U.S. Robotics USR8054
28.6 
Netgear FWG114P
25 
Dell Wireless 2300
23.5 
Microsoft MN-700
21.1 
Buffalo AirStation router
19.6 
Linksys WRT54G
15.6 
Note: Throughput in Mbps.

CNET Labs throughput tests with mixed b/g clients  (Longer bars indicate better performance)
Dell Wireless 2300
18.2 
U.S. Robotics USR8054
17 
Netgear FWG114P
12.5 
Microsoft MN-700
11.6 
Buffalo AirStation router
7.9 
Linksys WRT54G
6.7 
Note: Throughput in Mbps.

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In our range tests, the wireless firewall takes its place at the head of the pack. It had the best performance-over-distance curve we've seen so far and outperformed all three of our top range contenders: the Microsoft MN-700, the U.S. Robotics 8054, and the Dell Wireless 2300.

The wireless firewall also handles a sizable network, with support for up to 64 wireless clients and 253 NAT clients. This number is nearly four times the maximum clients support by the Dell Wireless 2300, which can handle only up to 16 wireless clients and 64 NAT clients.

CNET Labs tested the FWG114P using Version 1.0 Release 16 firmware. For more information on how we test, go to the CNET Labs site.

Netgear offers a solid three-year warranty along with 24/7 toll-free phone support for the FWG114P wireless firewall print server. The product-support Web site includes contact information for e-mailing or calling technical support, firmware updates, and useful online documentation, along with an online interactive learning tool called Mentor provided free for Netgear customers. The support page for the Netgear wireless firewall contains several worthwhile FAQs covering the device's various security features, including overviews and troubleshooting advice as well as detailed configuration tips. We recommend visiting the support site to download the updated firmware with WPA security support due out within the next few weeks.