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Wireless networking advice needed.





DoctorBeaver
At the moment I'm running a server with 3 PCs hung off it by cables. 1 of the PCs is connected to the internet but the server isn't. Of the other 2, 1 I use for music recording and another for video editing. They don't need to be on the internet which is why I haven't connected via the server. In fact, the server is mainly used to back up data from the other PCs, and as a bridge between my video/audio-based PCs and the 1 connected to the net.

I'm now going to convert my garden shed into an office so I'm going to have another PC out there. I want that 1 on the internet too. I don't particularly want to run a cable as it's quite a distance from the house (the electric in the shed is directly connected to the mains supply so I don't even need to mess about with that). For that reason I'm thinking of using a wireless connection between my PC that's connected to the internet and the new 1 I'm adding. I don't need the new PC linked to my own network; I just need it to share the broadband connection with my other internet PC. I don't even need it to share data with the other PC as it will be used for totally different stuff.

Another reason I don't really want it hardwired is that if it gets too cold out there in the winter, I'll be moving my office into the attic.

I've seen a few wireless ASDL modems advertised but none of them give any details about range or speed degradation over hard-wiring. All they say is that they're 802.11g. Some of the more expensive 1s are said to be "up to 8x faster than standard 802.11g".

The PC that is currently connected to the net will be used mainly for transferring music or video files (so quite intensive on bandwidth). The new 1 will be for my website development & uploading - so not a great deal of actual internet usage.

Does anyone have experience of this? If so, any info or advice would be greatly appreciated.
AftershockVibe
I've got 4 computers at home all hooked up with wireless.

Your average wireless router has a built-in 4 ethernet port swtich which will allow you to link up your existing computers within any extra gear. Even if you don't need two of them to access the internet it's simpler just to link through the router. If it's really important you can disable their access and because they're behind a hardware firewall & NAT they should be safe from outside threats.

Remember that you'll probably want a "Wireless Modem Router" rather than just a wireless router. Most phone companies (in the UK anyway) deliberately give you USB only modems which cannot be connected in any simple way to the network.

A modem router gets around this by replacing it (modem is inside the router). Depending on your ISP, you might need to phone up and ask them for your connection information as it is sometimes hard-coded into the modem software and therefore you aren't told it.

802.11g is definitely the right way to go. Be aware that 54Mbps is a theoretical maximum and drastically tails off with distance. If you're more than 80m from the router and have a few solid walls in the way you're going to notice!

Be aware that all the vendors saying 108Mbps or 8x faster.. blah... are just optimisations to the G standard. Therefore, they only work well with like-for-like hardware (same brand) and only in certain situations.

My hardware purports to run at 108Mbps but even with only one computer on the WLAN (+ router) it averages at about 48Mbps.
DoctorBeaver
Thanks for that info.

The ones I've been looking at are wireless modems. Each PC needs an adaptor that connects via USB port. The PC in the shed will be about 15m from the router with 2 brick walls in between.
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