wireless connection between pc/laptop?

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ej

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Hi-starting to have family conflicts over the pc....wondering how to connect the laptop to it, (preferably wireless) We have cable internet. I saw a microsoft product at Walmart for $30 ea that is supposed to do it. It looks too easy and too cheap. Can someone advise me about this, I know ethernet is the fastest, but it has to be corded. Is the wireless way slow? What all would I have to buy? info appreciated!
 
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Assuming you don't have a hub or router, I'd suggest getting a second nic for your PC, a Wireless Access Point, and either a wireless pc card for your laptop or a wireless USB adaptor. The WAP will plug into your second NIC on your PC and the setup for the laptop to the WAP is very simple. You'll need some type of proxy server running on your PC to share the Internet connection (ICS, Winproxy, etc).
I, personally, use a Linksys WAP (Linksys WAP11) and wireless pc card (Linksys WPC11). Instead of the wireless pc card, I could have chosed the wireless USB adaptor (Linksys WUSB11).

I don't know what Walmart would have for only $30 so I can't really comment.
 

ej

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so let me get this straight....I need to get TWO cards (WPC11) one in my PC and one in my thinkpad and a WAP11 access point, correct?
 
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ej-

What Angel said will work, but there is another option.

Buy a wireless access point that has a built in router, like the Linksys BEFW11S4. It is a wireless access point (WAP) and a 4 port switch / router combination.

Your cable modem plugs into the Linksys BEFW11S4. Up to 4 other computers can plug into the Linksys using regular old ethernet and it will act as switch (which is better than a hub). You also need a wireless network card for the notebook, which will interface with the Linksys BEFW11S4 wirelessly on the same network.

The linksys unit can have a bunch of computers hooked up to it wirelessly and four wired connections. All can access the internet via the cable modem and all can share files and printers.

This is not the cheapest option - the above mentioned Linksys router / switch / wireless access point goes for about $170 and wireless network cards for notebooks are $75-100 each. Your current network card in your PC can hook up to the router without any changes. Personally, i'd buy the WAP and wireless network card from the same supplier for ease of use.

I recommend this setup for several reasons. #1 is that the wireless access point is the most most expensive part of the equation and will cost at least $140 on its own. Buying a WAP with a built in router / switch doesn't increase the cost all that much. #2 - some cable modem companies aren't real keen about letting you have more than one computer access the internet without charging more money for the privilege. The router aspect of this equipment makes it look like you only have one computer. #3. The router also acts as a first defense against hackers / intruders - it has a built in firewall type defense.

A regular WAP won't necessarily have a router built in.

The reason i recommend the linksys unit above (as opposed to netgear or someone else) is because that is the setup i am using at home and it is working very well. I have 3 computers hooked up via ethernet cables (all in the basement, with the WAP), and i use one laptop anywhere in the house. All the computers can see each other, share printers and most importantly, share the cable modem internet connection. There are other companies that offer similar products at similar (maybe even lower) prices, so shop around. (I got mine a buy.com).

I hope i have explained this well. If not, please post another question or maybe do a search on this site for previous posts about wireless networks.

Tommy
 

ej

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Nov 21, 1999
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hey, thanks for the great answer! I was looking at that router/switch by Linksys myself, thinking that may be the way to go, but with your recommending it now I think I'll get it. I found the whole setup would be about $280, not bad... suppose if I wait a couple weeks it will be half that?....I wish
 
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