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Getting a wireless router.. what is essential?

(9 Posts)
robinpud Thu 28-Aug-08 11:16:19

How important is encryption and what is backwards compatible please?
I've found one with a range of 100m, speed of 240mps and that 802.11 thing. Not sure if it is vista compatible or will need sepearate drivers downloading. Now my head hurts... help

forevercleaning Thu 28-Aug-08 11:24:34

blimey! didnt realise there was so much to it, but if any help i have a wireless router (netgear) and windows vista.

Sometimes its great and will stay online all day, others It just doesnt get the signal so I plug my wire back in and away I go.

throckenholt Thu 28-Aug-08 13:08:44

if you pick a model and then google it you should be able to find out if it is ok with vista (I would think most are).

SqueakyPop Thu 28-Aug-08 13:29:22

Our 2-3 year old Netgear wireless router works fine with our newer Vista computers.

EvelynsDad Thu 28-Aug-08 14:58:29

Encryption is important to stop other people reading your email, etc. You want WPA encryption, WEP is too easy to break. WPA is breakable as well, but takes longer and is unlikely to be worth the effort unless you're handling credit card transactions.

Vista compatibility shouldn't be a problem. Your laptop will almost certainly support 802.11g unless it's really old in which case it will support 802.11b. Most modern routers will support both.

That's it really.

robinpud Thu 28-Aug-08 19:02:34

Ah, at last a geekwink THANKYOU that makes things a little clearer.. what's the backward compatability thing though?

EvelynsDad Thu 28-Aug-08 20:17:25

Without seeing the brochure I couldn't say for certain what they mean by "backward compatibility". I would guess that they are talking about supporting the old 802.11b standard, so it will talk to older laptops.

MrVibrating Thu 28-Aug-08 20:26:40

Backwards compatible simply means that as well as supporting the latest standards (mainly 802.11g and WPA) it also supports older standards (802.11b and WEP) so older equipment can connect to it.

Any Vista laptop is probably 802.11g/WPA compatible anyway, but if you want to connect say a Sony PSP handheld games machine (I have used mine to post to Mumsnet in the past!) this will only connect at 802.11b so backwards compatibility is important.

robinpud Thu 28-Aug-08 22:42:47

Thank you.. so elderly laptops will work with it as well as shiny new desktop. thanks for your help.

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