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Seeking advice on router

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Seeking advice on router

Hello all-

I'm hoping that someone can give me advice on what router it would be best for me to buy. At the moment I have a PCI ADSL card in my PC that was the one that PlusNet supplied me with when I first applied for the service.

Since I added a new hard-drive to my PC I've been getting a loss of sync periodically. This can occur once every five hours (for example) or twice in five minutes.

From reading these forums I believe that the reason for this loss of sync is that the power supply in my PC is inadequate. I think that if I get an external router/ hub it would take the pressure off my PC's power supply.

My question, basically, is: is there little to choose between routers? I’ve seen one that appears to meet my needs, the ‘Zoom ADSL X5 5554 – router’ This has a built in hub that will allow me to connect my second PC to my ADSL line (at the moment I’m using Microsoft ICS to connect my second machine via my first, to the Internet). I assume that both machines will connect to the Internet using 10/100 cabling from the router – I pay for a 2Mb connection, will 10/100 Ethernet limit my connection speed under these circumstances?

Is the above router a good choice?

I must apologise if these questions are very basic, while I have a good knowledge of graphic cards, hard-drives, memory, motherboards, etc. my awareness of modems/routers, etc. is basic at best!

Thanks in advance for any advice given,

Cheers

Don.
13 REPLIES
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Seeking advice on router

Firstly your network card will not slow your connection, since it's capable of 100MB/Sec. and your connection to Plus Net is 2Mb/s.

Loss of Sync due to power problems is normally something that affects USB modems not PCI Cards, but I could be wrong.

As for router choice, it depends what you want to spend and what you want to do in the future. I was going to suggest a Netgear router, for example DG834.
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Seeking advice on router

I bought a 10/100 router with built in modem ( Mentor adsl-MR4C) for £40.

I was after sharing the adsl link without having to have both pcs switched on. I've not tried setting up a full file sharing network, I have a personal desktop & a company supplied laptop and like to keep the 2 separate


It's based on a conexant chipset, not much support, not much documentation but is cheap.

I was a novice with routers, but an hour or so fiddling and It works a treat.

Afterwards I found a website http://www.cazart.plus.com/conexant/ that told me everything I wanted to know to upgrade firmware etc.

Hope this helps

Jeff
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Thanks for your replies

Thanks for your replies gadgetboy and cank1. I think that I'll just go with the Zoom router I was thinking of getting.

I didn't realise that it was just USB modems that had the power-supply problem. Even if getting a router with it's own power supply doesn't fix my problems with losing sync, it will at least free up a PCI slot, and taking the place of my current hub, won't add to the clutter on my desk-top.

If after getting the router I still have problems with losing sync periodically I'll just have to raise a ticket.

Thanks again

Don.
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Seeking advice on router

USB Modems can be a problem as some motherboards can't cope with the amount of juice (current) they require and it drains the motherboard. This has been known to cause sync problems as the modem cycles for a fraction of second.

I assume you have a network card to connect your router to?

As for the make of router, I'm afraid I don't know much about Zoom products, I use a netgear router hence why I suggested one. Does this router have a firewall? i.e. Nat Based or full SPI? Go for full SPI if you can.

(Nat is Network address translation and SPI is state packetful inspection)
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Seeking advice on router

That would be Stateful Packet Inspection, gadgetboy. Wink
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Seeking advice on router

I know, but I've got a hangover..... Shockedops:
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Seeking advice on router

If you can possibly afford it, go for a router with a good SPI firewall. The Draytek Vigor 2600 range is good, if a bit costly. The ZyXEL Prestige 652R is even better (and even more costly). They will, however, give you some real peace of mind against intrusion / hacking.

Can't happen to you? I have a friend who recently upgraded his PC and went BroadBand whilst he was at it. He'd spent a quite bit more than anticipated, so decided to save money by not getting either a harware or software firewall or anti-virus/trojan. Saved himself nearly 100 quid.

Then he started getting bills for things he hadn't ordered; acknowledgement for credit applications and such like. Yes, he'd been virused, trojaned and hacked. Like many of us, he kept all his personal info on his PC and it was all vulnerable. He's had to cancel all his cards, change his Bank account and a hundred other things. It's taken several weeks to sort out and he has lost about £900 in the process.

Do yourself a favour and get a router with a decent SPI firewall. Get a decent personal firewall (I use Outpost), a Trojan scanner (I use Tauscan) and an anti-virus package (I use Avast!).
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Seeking advice on router

The use of a good software firewall and virus checker cannot be stressed enough.

Scary as it may seem but loads of people still don't use either, they just don't think it's going to happen to them.

I use Kaspersky Virus Checker & Firewall. www.kaspersky.com
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Seeking advice on router

On the opposite side of the coin, there are those who get paranoid about the occasional TCP ping appearing in the firewall logs from people who have not installed any up to date protection..
There is a happy medium somewhere.
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I've got it and I LOVEit!!...

Thanks to you all for giving me your advice. But I went and got the Zoom 5444 (x5) that I mentioned in my first post.

After a medium-sized problem that I had due to getting my IP addresses mixed up, I got connected to the Internet. The result is WOW!!!!

I have been paying for a 2MB connection for months now, and I thought that the low connection speeds that I was experiencing was just due to local conditions. I tried altering settings (as advised on these forums but got little benefit as a result). Below you can see what the PlusNet Speedtest gave me:

10-04-2004 18:16:11 608.3
10-04-2004 18:15:41 769.2
10-04-2004 18:15:16 614.8
10-04-2004 18:14:41 583.9
10-04-2004 18:13:57 615.2
27-11-2003 19:11:28 740.2
27-11-2003 19:09:06 549.7
27-11-2003 18:58:46 815.4
27-11-2003 18:51:37 643.9
27-11-2003 18:42:47 606.1
27-11-2003 18:41:28 667
27-11-2003 18:36:39 558.8
26-11-2003 19:50:42 1457
26-11-2003 19:50:05 1457
26-11-2003 19:49:38 0
26-11-2003 19:47:43 1183.5
26-11-2003 19:46:59 1368.4

I was told by the PlusNet speed test that this was lower than I should expect with my connection. However I connected up my new router and immediately got (no adjustment required) this:

10-04-2004 21:12:30 1939.8
10-04-2004 21:12:04 1945.8

so, I'm ecstatic :lol: . Anybody else who has an internal PCI ADSL modem - I would advise them to get a router - this is a 3x improvement without any fiddling with settings.

As regards Firewalls, etc. I have McAfree Firewall on my machine, and block anything that might be harmful as a result.

Thanks to you all for your input

PS: When I carried out tests on my connction speed using PlusNets own test, I was told that the connection was slower that they would expect! Given the circumstances, wouldn't it be more useful for PlusNet to tell the ADSL inept users like myself that their connection was FAR less than was expected and that there was something wrong as a result.
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Seeking advice on router

Hi,

connection speed can be low due to contention on the local exchange, it doesn't always mean something is wrong.

GB
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Seeking advice on router

Quote
connection speed can be low due to contention on the local exchange, it doesn't always mean something is wrong.


True, but at some point you should get a good speed reading despite contention.

A decent router is always the way to go.
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Seeking advice on router

Hi guys - I pretty much blamed contention for my low connection. However, now, I'm amazed that I put up with it for so long. Basically, it was because I didn't know any better. Now that I have a connection that is providing me with what I pay for it's great.

Don.