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Wireless connection to internet and printer

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Wireless connection to internet and printer

This is 2 separate questions:
I have a centrino laptop, which I think means it has a wireless 'card' built in. I have signed up with plus.net and have the Voyager 105 modem. I now want to connect my laptop to the internet without having to plug anything in to it and am confused with all the jargon/options out there - modem, router, ethernet, network, etc.
I don't think I want/need a network, Can you advise what I should buy just connebt my laptop to work wirelessly and any recommendations of makes would be appreciated.

Question 2 (may influence answer to above).
I need to buy a new printer. It would be ideal if I could operate this without plugging anything in to my laptop. Can you buy a wireless printer or set something to allow this?

Thanks in anticipation,
Trevor
7 REPLIES
N/A

Wireless connection to internet and printer

Hi,

The Centrino chipset of your laptop does, indeed, mean that it has integrated wireless capability but it needs a wireless access point/router/modem to which it can connect in order to access the internet.

The USB modem is not very well supported as far as wireless routers are concerned. I personally use a wireless modem/router and have consigned my USB modem to the 'spares' cupboard (as a backup in case my router fails at any time).

Some wireless modem/routers have an integrated facility for attaching a printer.

Suggest that you have a look at http://www.adslguide.org.uk/reviews/ which will give you an idea of the kit that's available.

The other benefit of a modem/router is that most, if not all, have integrated firewalls

Hope this helps.
N/A

Wireless connection to internet and printer

Thanks penalt.
Looked at other posts and the Netgear DG834G seems popular.
You mentioned the integrated firewalls, which raised another question. The Norton anti-virus 2004 free period i got with my lapyop has just ran out and I have bought Norton Internet Security 2005 because it has a firewall as well as anti-virus, but since I bought it I started reading reviews and it does not have a good reputation so I am reluctant to load it.
Question:
Does the integrated firewall in wireless modems do the same job as software like NIS 2005. (I'm still in the 14 day return period so can still send Norton back!)

Hope this is not breaking forum rules - software question?

Thanks.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Wireless connection to internet and printer

Software firewalls on PCs and hardware firewalls on routers perform different activities.

Hardware firewalls tend to block incoming connections but allow any outgoing connections (unless specifically configured not to). So they will block other PCs trying to infect your PC and block hacking attempts from the internet.

Software firewalls block both incoming and outgoing connections but also block internet access to programs running on your PC which hardware firewalls cannot do. This means if you do get infected (say via an email virus or from installing some software), the software firewall will block any attempt that virus makes to connect to other PCs.

So I will always recommend having both hardware and software firewalls on your setup as it gives the best protection in both directions.
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Wireless connection to internet and printer

Re: Looked at other posts and the Netgear DG834G seems popular.

As Peter has answered your firewall question (I concur with him), looking at the above query, I run the immediate predecessor (DG824M) of the DG834G and have found it fine, however, you should be aware that it doesn't have an integrated printer connection.
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Wireless connection to internet and printer

Thanks for the advice.
If the wireless modem is to be connected to the printer, which will be upstairs, will my laptop work downstairs, i.e, does the signal transmit/receive ok above and below the wireless modem.

When I'm looking for a wireless modem what do I look for to check that I can attach a printer - will it say "with built-in printer port", or do I need to look for a specific type of interface.

Thanks.
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Wireless connection to internet and printer

You'll need to experiment with positioning the modem/router for optimal signal reception - high in the house is, apparently, best - but depends on what building materials the signal has to pass through.

Mine is on the first floor, reception fine on ground floor and in the garden.

As far as the printer query is concerned see: http://www.adslguide.org/hardware/reviews/2003/q3/smc_7404wbra.asp as an example - has in-built print server (but looks as though it's parallel port only in that product).

IIRC, Draytec produces some that have integrated print servers.
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Wireless connection to internet and printer

If your printer is USB I would recommend this.

It has one ethernet port that will plug into one of the four wireless switch/router/modem ports and a single USB port to attach the printer.

Easy to configure via a browser interface and an excellent manual.