You can choose from a wide variety of DSL, and only your Internet service provider knows which ones are being used. However, do make sure this is the case if you are looking at DSL.
You then plug your network into the DSL modem. The advantages of DSL are that you have a dedicated connection between your computer and the service provider, rather than sharing it with your neighbors. However, your Internet traffic eventually merges with your neigh- bors in the provider's high-speed core, anyway.
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DSL offers good speeds, and because it's delivered over your phone line, you can usually get a price break by bundling your DSL and phone service. DSL is usually offered in different grades, such as 1 Mbps down and K up. This means you can download files at 1 million bits per second, or roughly a compact disc's worth of files in an hour and a half. The upstream speed isn't as important because the bulk of your Internet usage is downloading.
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Having 1 Mbps down is adequate for Web browsing, but having Mbps is more desirable. It goes up from there, so if you plan on downloading a lot of files, then look at higher plans. Contemplating cable Cable-based Internet uses some TV channels for sending and receiving the Internet signals. A cable modem plugs into your TV jack, you plug your net- work into the cable modem, and you're off to the races.
Cable is capable of higher speeds than DSL, so this tends to even out. The usual practice of cable companies seems to be to charge a rental fee for the modem or to allow you to buy your own. If you want to go down this road, ask your cable company for a list of supported modems and follow it to the letter!
These grades are likely to be faster than DSL, but remember, you are sharing your connection. Usually the basic package is good enough to get you started, and you can easily upgrade later. Don't forget to ask about bundling opportunities if you're a cable subscriber.
Debating dial-up I only mention dial-up in here to tell you to avoid it. It's slow. It doesn't cost much less than a basic high-speed DSL or cable package. You can't use your phone when you're on the Internet because your computer is using it, which defeats the purpose of wireless. Did I mention it's slow? Dial-up requires you to use a modem in your computer to make a call to another modem at your provider, while DSL injects the Internet sig- nals on top of your voice calls which you don't notice. DSL is good, dial-up is bad. Oh, yeah, and dial-up is slow.
Exploring flOS or FTTH options Depending on where you live, you might have the option of getting fiber optic cable delivered to your home. Pronouncing the two might get messy, though. Fiber optic cable can deliver a lot of speed.
It's reliable, too. This extra speed will cost from "slightly more than cable" to "a lot more than cable," depend- ing on how fast you want to go. But, if the option is available to you, it's worth looking at. You will be able to get speeds much faster than cable or DSL. Depending on the provider of the fiber, you may be able to get better entertainment offerings, such as high-definition television and video on demand over the same fiber.
Going otter the Letters Getting set up with Internet access if you don't have it already takes a few days, which gives you time to think about the kind of wireless network you want. The eggheads I mean engineers The IEEE Over 20 standards exist in the The Original — It worked, but given the state of industry in , it was expensive and bulky. They were the size of a shoebox!
The other standards out there are amendments to Improving on things — You get a lot of noise at 2. There's also more room up there, which means you can have more radios operating in the same area without stepping on each other. The downside is a slightly decreased range; indoor networks are usu- ally rated at around feet for Needless to say, unless your gear has both a and b radios in them, you have to choose one or the other. Mass market appeal and low prices made The market for You can still find some Giving uou speeds in , it's In the worst case you get That aside, Despite being released in , this version is still current.
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If you look at what's on your store shelves, or if you already have a network card, chances are it's At 54 mbps, If you already have Although But look in the stores, and you'll see A patent problem with a part of In the meantime, an industry group called the Wi-Fi Alliance has developed a certification program for devices to ensure that they comply with draft 2.
The logo is shown in Figure I talk about upgrading your router later, but for now, just understand that if you buy a certified product, you shouldn't have to buy anything else to upgrade once those lawyers get finished. It also doubles the range of That's fast! Behind those impressive numbers, though, is some marketing magic.
You only get the benefits of 5 GHz if your equipment has 5 GHz radios that means both your access point and wireless card. Such devices are labeled dual band, meaning that they have both the 2. In the interests of dropping costs, though, many For this to happen, the frequency has to be clear and the device has to have multiple antennas. At the 2. Most consumer devices have two antennas, which is twice as good as one, but only half as good as the four that are required to get up to Mbps.
It's not all bad news for There are still improvements on If you have a need for speed, then 5 GHz This way you can make sure your speed-hungry devices aren't slowed down by legacy adapters. Compatibility concerns Wireless devices are generally downward compatible with other devices in the same frequency. Therefore, you can mix Keep in mind that just because something's compatible doesn't mean that it's going to run as well as it could.
Even with an Book II Chapter 2 When your access point's capabilities exceed that of the clients, you still have problems. An This limitation isn't too much to worry about because Table Look at It? Make sure any Check www. If speed is a concern, go with n. If your laptops already have a b or g radio, then consider starting out with Purchasing a Brand Name Go to the store and you're going to see an assortment of products, all by dif- ferent manufacturers.
The first part of the selection process is finding which of these boxes have the features you want, followed by picking a manufacturer. You're going to see a few manufacturers, some you recognize, some you don't.
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I recommend going with a name-brand product instead of a cheap, white, box knockoff, especially if you're choosing Do you see the same manufacturer being advertised by different stores? If so, chances are it's a reputable brand that different stores are willing to stand behind.
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Also consider that an established brand has the resources and desire to maintain the software that makes your wireless card work. You may need to call for help at some point. Cheap equipment is made cheaply. This is your guarantee that the device will interoperate with other vendors' equipment. Read the fine print carefully; some- times items shown on the box aren't inside the box.
A few bucks extra on a name-brand device will almost certainly save you frustration down the road. Talk to some friends, neighbors, or coworkers to find out the brands that they like or dislike. Routing and Bridging You're going to have a network in your house, and it's going to connect to your service provider's network. To get between networks, you have to route.
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