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Beware of the cheap wireless solutions at home

Tuesday, May 20, 2008 in Technical Articles (Views: 4077)
Sometimes, the limits of technology can be stupid. Looking back on some of the technology that has graced our house over the years, my favorite was the wireless network cutting out when the phone was being used. Let's remember that 802.11b shared a 2.4GHz frequency with cordless phones. Let's forget how the microwave blew that up... :)

That was 2001, now we are in 2008, with one of the greatest inventions ever, the Tivo. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why the Tivo would cut out of our 802.11g wireless network. So, I took the wireless card I had (a Netgear, 802.11g) and replaced it with a Tivo network card, and also bought a new 802.11n/g/b/m-i-c-k-e-y-m-o-u-s-e wireless access point and switch. Amazingly, the Tivo never cut out after that.

Why the blog? After 2 different Linksys Wireless/SWitch with VPN boxes (retailed at $249) had a high pitched squeal, I cut my losses and didn't want an issue with a third. I put the old 802.11g wireless access point back on the network, which turned out to be a huge mistake.

It turns out that this wireless access point causes devices to drop off the network if another device is flooding the network with traffic (such as transferring large files, or programs from one Tivo to another).

Moral of the story - be careful the infastructure even in your own home with wireless technology, and if you have an older access point that causes trouble, maybe it's time to upgrade that to a newer switch, it will certainly make a difference, as it will for us tomorrow morning once I buy it... :)

 

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