1. Computer problem? Tech Support Guy is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations. Click here to join today! If you're new to Tech Support Guy, we highly recommend that you visit our Guide for New Members.

Does a usb Wifi AC adapter bypass internal NIC card?

Discussion in 'Networking' started by TotalBalance, Feb 23, 2016.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Advertisement
  1. TotalBalance

    TotalBalance Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    I've got an older laptop with an internal Ethernet 10/100 NIC card and a 2.4g wireless adapter.
    I now have an ISP Internet package that provides up to 250mb download speeds. However I can never get over 100mb as it seems both my internal wired and wireless max out at 100mb.

    If I purchase a usb wireless ac adapter that can handle download speeds of 300mb @ 2.4g and 800+mb @5g will:
    1) I get the speeds I'm paying for (up to 250mb download) or
    2) the fact my PC's internal NIC (network interface card) max is 100mb that's all I can expect?

    In other words, does a usb wireless ac dual band adapter work independent of all other network devices on one's PC to provide the best Internet speed or is the speed still throttled by one's PC internal NIC card limitations.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2016
  2. dvk01

    dvk01 Moderator Malware Specialist

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2002
    Messages:
    56,236
    First Name:
    Derek
    realistically, you won't see any difference in "normal " day to day usage
    Whilst the headline download speed might say 300mb, in the real world, that would be between a server sitting beside your computer and your computer.
    You might see an actual download speed on a large file of between 100-150mb but that would depend on the server having a large bandwith and no one else downloading from it at the same time
     
  3. bassfisher6522

    bassfisher6522

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,793
    Depending on age of the laptop it should default to the new wifi adapter....if not you can turn off the internal one. On laptops there is a FN key combo or a wifi button to turn off. If there isn't one (should be) you can turn it off in the BIOS.

    What is the make/model of the laptop in question?
     
  4. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Messages:
    78,827
    First Name:
    Terry
    If you have more than one connection (with a Default Gateway specified) assume that Windows will pick one at random for internet access. The easiest and surest way to get what you want is to disable the unneeded connections (as bassfisher6522 said).
     
  5. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Messages:
    80,154
    First Name:
    Frank
    If I want to use a more modern USB wireless adapter in a laptop that has an older built-in wireless device, I disable the built-in one in the Device Manager first before inserting and using the USB one.

    Even with a more modern USB wireless adapter, you likely still won't get anywhere close to your advertised 250 Mbps download speed.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------
     
  6. TotalBalance

    TotalBalance Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Thanks all for the great explanations and advice! In summary I'll buy a new usb wireless adapter, disable my internal wireless card and we'll see how fast it goes :) As an FYI, a friend signed on with his new iPhone 6S and using the speedtest.net app he showed download speeds of 220mb. The iPhone WLAN card is Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, hotspot so I'm hopeful :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2016
  7. DaveA

    DaveA It's My Birthday! Trusted Advisor Spam Fighter

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 1999
    Messages:
    16,160
    First Name:
    David
    Also note that the Router MUST support the higher speeds.

    How do you connect to your ISP?
     
  8. TotalBalance

    TotalBalance Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Thanks DaveA. The router should be fine. It's supplied by the ISP as part of the new service plan. Specifically it's the ARRIS DOCSIS 3.0 Residential Gateway with 802.11n/ 4 GigaPort Router/ 2-Voice Lines for Comcast (TG862G-CT) http://goo.gl/LgqYUT It's connected to the cable wall outlet.
    What's nice is it allows me to also connect my own Asus Router - ASUS (RT-AC68U) Wireless-AC1900 Dual-Band Gigabit Router - http://goo.gl/o3WVKM allowing me to setup two home network SSIDs ... well technically 6 is you take into account dual band and guest networks :)

    However, I may purchase my own cable modem gateway router if everything else works well so I don't have to keep paying the 10/mo fee ;-) Especially as I don't need the voice lines feature.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2016
  9. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Messages:
    80,154
    First Name:
    Frank
    My ISP provides me with pretty much the same model for my 200 Mbps service, but they charge me $4.00 a month rental.

    If you do decide to buy your own, make sure your ISP supports using it.

    --------------------------------------------------------------
     
  10. TotalBalance

    TotalBalance Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Thanks Flavallee, I'll definitely keep that in mind :)
     
  11. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Messages:
    80,154
    First Name:
    Frank
    You're welcome, and good luck. (y)

    ---------------------------------------------------------------
     
  12. TotalBalance

    TotalBalance Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    On a related note ... now that I'm trying to find the best money/value WiFi USB adapter for my needs, came across a nice comparison review:
    "Tested: We push six 802.11ac Wi-Fi USB adapters to the limit" http://goo.gl/dbvZgF
    Looking at the results it's interesting the Netgear usb 2.0 adapter outperformed all but the Asus usb 3.0 adapter with a price tag of $30 compared to $70. Looking on Amazon there's even a manufacture refurb for only $14! As my laptop has two 2.0 and one 3.0 usb ports, I'm wondering how much the usb 2.0 vs. 3.0 option will effect internet download speeds, taking into account the plans max speed advertised is 250mb? Perhaps I'll buy this netgear $50 wireless usb 2.0 adapter and see how it goes :) No doubt the devil's in the details o_O
    NETGEAR AC1200 WiFi USB 2.0 Adapter - AC Dual Band (A6200-100PAS)
    It claims to handle 300/900 2.4g/5g.
    http://goo.gl/BbIs13

    I'm also looking into getting a new ethernet gigaport usb 3.0 adapter to handle those times I need the fastest possible speeds by connecting my laptop directly to the router via gigaport ethernet.
    Here's one I'm looking at:
    "Anker 3-Port USB 3.0 HUB with 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet Converter (3 USB 3.0 Ports, A RJ45 Gigabit Ethernet Port, Support Windows XP, Vista, Win7/8 (32/64 bit), Mac OS 10.6 and above, Linux) Black"
    http://goo.gl/ptxGSs
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2016
  13. Sponsor

As Seen On
As Seen On...

Welcome to Tech Support Guy!

Are you looking for the solution to your computer problem? Join our site today to ask your question. This site is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations.

If you're not already familiar with forums, watch our Welcome Guide to get started.

Join over 733,556 other people just like you!

Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Short URL to this thread: https://techguy.org/1166749

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice