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Thread: Help please getting a wireless router to work with a Tablet, & 'N' router suggestions

  1. #1
    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    Question Help please getting a wireless router to work with a Tablet, & 'N' router suggestions

    First I have to preface this by saying that wireless networking is totally new to me, I've been wired for about 15 years and never had the need for wireless until now. So I don't know anything at all about it.

    I just got a tablet running Android 4.0.3 ICS. I held off on getting a new wireless N router because I wasn't sure if the tablet would work well. (It does, really awesome). I first also wanted to simply test it with some existing wireless routers I have laying around to see if a wireless network is even possible:

    I happen to have 3 older full-size wireless routers (also with RJ45 ports) that were never used, they are all wireless G, 54mb/s, and I haven't been able to get any of them to work with the tablet even when standing right next to them. They "connect" and show a valid connection, even obtaining an IP address, but no webpages will display ("Webpage not available"), they seem to be timing-out.

    I simply hooked them up to one of my current wired router's output LAN ports, then connected that cable to the wireless routers' inputs, since that's the way these newer "travel" routers work (I believe this is referred to as "AP mode" on new routers). But I don't know if any kind of "configuration" has to be done with these routers I already have in order to actually connect to and get to webpages, nor do I know if these routers would actually even work in this kind of case! (I'm correctly or incorrectly assuming they would since that's how the N "travel routers" work). I just wanted to use these routers for testing, just to see if things would work, before I ordered a wireless N router. I'm most puzzled by them apparently connecting, the tablet showing a connection and signal strength, yet resulting in no access to websites. So I would greatly appreciate it if anyone could tell me what I'm doing wrong, or, if these wireless routers I've been trying will even work in this case. (FWIW: Trendnet TEW-432BRP, Blanc BW-54R11, Westell Versalink 7501).

    I can't get a new N router until I can find out if it's even possible to get a wireless internet signal here. (Again, I know nothing about this and FAIK there could be "something odd in the air" preventing it). I have a 2.4ghz cordless phone system with security cameras, and I know that's the same frequency as at least the N routers, don't know about the G. But, so do millions of others and I'm sure they can get on the internet with their tablets. When I tried them, the phone nor the cameras were being used.

    But I have to point out something I found most interesting: When I go into the WiFi area of the tablet, I see anywhere from 3 to 5 other wireless networks! What is this, neighbors??? I find that hard to believe, because for one; the range. For two; my neighbors on one side have no internet, to another side they are elderly and no internet, so that leaves only two other possibilities! Yet again I will see up to 5 wireless networks! (Not knowing what I'm doing) I tried to connect to these other "phantom" networks just for the heck of it to see what would happen (no, I didn't think that I actually could), and obviously I couldn't connect because they showed types of encryption, and asked for a password. however, when I touch on any of the routers listed that I hooked up, and did a "scan" or "connect", and it gets connected, they show no encryption! I don't understand that, since the routers I tried do have encryption.

    Hopefully I can get a router to work, otherwise the tablet would be useless. Assuming that I can, regarding new N routers: The size of the router isn't important and it wouldn't be for travel(1). I just need something reliable and fast for this new tablet that will hook up to my existing wired router. I can't even find out if in my case 300mb/s N routers would actually equate to faster internet use, and if 150mb/s would be the same. The DSL service from my ISP is 6mb. I would not be transferring any files via networking. So would 150mb/s be the same as 300mb/s for use around the home? Do speeds decrease as distance increases? If so, by about how much? The maximum distance from the router would probably be around ~60', and through a couple of brick walls at times. For those of you that have tablets, what are you all using?

    My list of possibilities could be reduced if I could determine if I could even benefit from a 300mb/s router. If not, then I could go with cheaper 150mb/s. If I could benefit from one, then I could delete the 150mb/s routers from the list of candidates. These are some I'm considering due to the high ratings:

    Zuni ZR301F (300mb):
    http://www.zunidigital.com/?page_id=220
    http://www.zunidigital.com/?page_id=534

    EnGenius ETR9330 (300mb):
    http://www.engeniustech.com/home-net...-travel-router

    Neewer 40008298 (150mb):
    http://www.neewer.com/index.php?main...oducts_id=3314

    TP-Link TL-WR702N (150mb):
    http://www.tp-link.com/us/products/d...TL-WR702N#over

    Then of course there's the plethora of full-sized wireless/wired combo routers. But from what I understand (very little) these smaller types of "travel" routers are easier to connect and use with an existing wired network.

    (1) This is something else I don't understand: While at this point I just want to get wireless net access to the tablet around here, I would also like to be able to do this abroad, in the car, outdoors, in stores, etc. I see this on TV all the time, and, with stand-alone tablets. I never see anything connected to the tablets. From what (little) I've been able to determine about this so far, this looks like some kind of 3G/4G access.? This tablet supports 3G via dongle. So how are all these people able to do this without anything attached to their tablets? If it's your cell phone provider, where's the "other device" ("modem"?) that enables the tablet to actually do this?? Are the tablets wirelessly connected through their cell phones and that's how it works?

    Thanks.......I need help. LoL.
    God Bless,
    -Clint
    (Join Date: 1999)

  2. #2
    Administrator rah's Avatar
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    It sounds like what you really want to do is turn a wireless router into an access point on your existing wired router's connection. Have a look at this and see if it helps you any.

    As for the other connections that you see, if your neighbors are broadcasting a wifi signal and have a dual band router setup you would see two different ways to access the same router.

    <edit>
    This link might also help you out.

    Also, for traveling if you have a smartphone you can try setting up it's hotspot features. That makes your phone connection and phone a wireless router of sorts for which your tablet would be able to connect to while on the go.

    The downside to this is that your carrier could charge you extra if they see you doing this.
    </edit>
    Last edited by rah; 10-08-2012 at 04:48 PM. Reason: Add more

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    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    First Rah, did you move my post and Deepsand's post from http://www.webproworld.com/webmaster...ide-trial-soon to a new thread; http://www.webproworld.com/webmaster...oftware-Issues ? I thought the existing thread was appropriate, that's why I posted it there. No harm done, just curious.

    So on to this: Thanks for the reply:
    Quote Originally Posted by rah View Post
    It sounds like what you really want to do is turn a wireless router into an access point on your existing wired router's connection.
    Yes, exactly. And thanks for the links. But is that what I really want? There's been some changes and new info. Please see this:

    I got a reply back from one of the router manufacturers to whom I've been asking about their routers. She said this:

    >Even your old G routers should be able to
    >provide fast speed to your internet connection.
    >Only recently have cable companies started
    >deploying modems that exceed the G speed
    >standards.


    To which I say:

    First, the existing wired router I had been using somehow got "hosed". I was making some changes to it to try and get one of the wireless routers to work with it, and it "didn't like" the change, so I reset it, and that did nothing. I'm still locked out of it. So I had to end up hooking up one of the wireless 54mb/s G routers alone by itself, replacing my existing wired router, and then I was able to get the wireless portion of it working with the tablet. But it's PAINFULLY slow........

    My ISP service is 6mb, technically, "6Mb" (Megabit) or 6000Kb. That equates to 750KB/s theoretical download speeds (.75MB/s). But I'm able, due to some registry tweaks (and whatever other factors), to get download speeds up to about 4MB/s (which amounts to a 32Mb service and not 6Mb). This has remained the case with this wireless G router and using its 10/100 wired ethernet ports for my wired desktop PC. I know that "10/100" means 100Mb/s (as far as the "100" is concerned). Now in looking at all of those numbers, logically it would seem that a 54Mb/s G router would be at least as fast as my desktop wired PC, which again can get 4MB/s download speeds. But the wireless portion of the router is, like I said, unusable it's so slow.

    (FWIW, my motherboard's NIC is a Gigabit 1000Mb/s LAN.....also overkill for internet use?).

    Also it would seem that a 100Mb wired router would even be overkill for internet access, and a Gigabit wired router (with wireless N) would be even more overkill?? Am I interpreting that correctly? (Am I correct to assume "LAN" is to be taken totally in the literal sense, as Local Area Network only, who's speed is irrelevant as far as internet use goes?)

    If so, then it would also seem that a 54Mb/s G router would also be overkill. Yet not only is it apparently not overkill, but waaaaay too slow. How? If I'm interpreting this correctly, the numbers don't make sense and do not support actual use.

    Range? Does not the speeds decrease as the range increases with wireless access? From everything I've read about wireless routers so far, that answer is "yes". I've seen charts where throughput drops of drastically with only a few feet. So then would not a 300Mb/s wireless N router give faster speeds at the fringe areas of their ranges, than that of a 150Mb/s N router, and even more so than that of a 54Mb/s G router? If this is the case--and I believe it is--then the numbers for wireless use cannot be taken in the same literal verbatim sense as wired use.

    Am I incorrect about any of this? To sum-it-up:

    For wired use: (Since I don't transfer files between PC's, no "Local" network use) Getting a combo Gigabit 1000Mb wired/wireless N router is overkill and a waste of money, and a combo 10/100 wired/wireless N router would be the same. Right?

    For wireless use: I should get a combo 10/100 wired/300Mb/s wireless N router due to the range issues?

    This is assuming that wired router I have been using really is trashed, and I'm going to need a new full-sized wired/wireless router because the one I'm using right now is again only 54Mb G on the wireless side of it.

    But what if this router can be fixed? Then I would only need a "travel" type wireless N router (wireless access point), something like the Zuni or EnGenius in my first post. Would it be "best" to do that, OR, would wireless internet speeds be slower with that setup, than that with a new 10/100 wired 300Mb/s wireless router, since the "300Mb wireless portion" would not be "tied-to" or "dependent" so-to-speak on the 100Mb/s WIRED port? I say that because you're only as fast as your slowest link. If a 300Mb wireless travel router is "attached to" a wired port that is only 100Mb/s, then wouldn't the 300Mb wireless router be only 100Mb and no longer 300Mb? Or would that still be irrelevant due to my only (actual) "32Mb" service from my ISP? Or, would it not be irrelevant because of these wireless speed Vs range issues?

    I'm just trying to figure out now that even if my router can be fixed, if I should still get an entirely new wired (100 or 1000?) router with 300Mb wireless, or if the much simpler travel router would end up being the same wireless speed.

    I really appreciate any clarifications Rah (and any input from anyone welcomed). Thanks.
    Last edited by Clint1; 10-09-2012 at 02:37 AM.
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  4. #4
    Administrator rah's Avatar
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    I haven't moved any threads, so I'm not sure why they were moved. As for the speeds, you normally won't actually get the advertised speeds. There are many variables that go into getting the max speed for an extended period of time. They advertise the max because it sounds good, but unless you have the exact hardware they were testing you probably won't get sustained speeds that high.

    If all of your devices don't actually have wireless N specs then yes a wireless N router would be pointless. However, since you have a tablet I would go ahead and assume it's wireless N capable, plus the gigabit ethernet connections would mean the router would last you a lot longer down the road as internet connections speed up. The extra bandwidth would be used and the router would come in handy down the road when you add more devices.

    If you are experiences slow speeds and short range, then I would check for any interference from things like house phones that use the same frequency. In most recent routers you can change the frequency it runs at in the admin panel to try and help you get a better connection. This is vendor specific so you would have to look it up. Talking about range, yes the speed does take a hit the further away you get, but unless you have thick concrete walls, or a multiple story house I doubt you would have any issues there.

    You are correct in assuming your LAN speeds are very different from your actual internet speeds. Those speeds are when devices on your internal connection are taking with each other across the router. Unless you move somewhere like Japan your internet connection to the outside world won't be anywhere near that high anytime soon. None of the routers you have mentioned are overkill for your internal network. The more bandwidth available the better. This would help you sort of future proof your network for when you start adding more devices that could potentially use the network.

    If you are simply trying to get this done and working, it would probably be easier for you to just replace your router with a new one that is Wireless N with gigabit ethernet connections. As for the travel router, you should probably talk with your wireless phone provider. Some will give you a router to carry around with you that is pre-configured for you.

  5. #5
    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rah View Post
    I haven't moved any threads, so I'm not sure why they were moved.
    Well that's odd. A mod must have moved them. I was not notified about it.

    Thanks for the info Rah:


    If all of your devices don't actually have wireless N specs then yes a wireless N router would be pointless. However, since you have a tablet I would go ahead and assume it's wireless N capable,
    I only have one wireless device, the tablet, and yes it's b/g/n.


    .....The extra bandwidth would be used and the router would come in handy down the road when you add more devices.
    But the "extra bandwidth" that would be used, would only be use for Local networking, right?


    If you are experiences slow speeds and short range, then I would check for any interference from things like house phones that use the same frequency.
    We have 2.4ghz cordless phones w/built in LCD monitors that also monitor its 2.4ghz wireless security cameras. But they have not been in use when I've used the tablet. Also 2 microwaves, but they are not used for very long.


    You are correct in assuming your LAN speeds are very different from your actual internet speeds. Those speeds are when devices on your internal connection are taking with each other across the router. None of the routers you have mentioned are overkill for your internal network.
    Ok, internal and local.


    As for the travel router, you should probably talk with your wireless phone provider. Some will give you a router to carry around with you that is pre-configured for you.
    They're only called a "travel" router because of their simplicity on the road, like in hotels where you can hook it up to their wired network and then your tablet will be wireless. Same in the home when using it to "convert" one's existing wired router for use with wireless devices. But I'm still not clear on one thing: Please see again the paragraph that begins with "But what if this router can be fixed?" : If a 300mb/s wireless router is hooked up to a 100mb/s wired LAN output, (which is how they are hooked up), would not that 300mb/s wireless router then be only 100mb/s? If so, in that scenario, a 150mb/s wireless router would be enough. (And then I wouldn't do that but I would get a complete new 300mb N router with 10/100 RJ45 or better).


    If you are simply trying to get this done and working, it would probably be easier for you to just replace your router with a new one that is Wireless N with Gigabit Ethernet connections.
    If my last paragraph above is "yes" (it would indeed be only 100mb), then I've been looking for quite a while now and only due to ratings I've got it narrowed down to two full-blown routers w/300mb N:

    Buffalo WZR-300HP. This is a Gigabit router, 3yr warranty, boasts of "high power" and "great range". But the two adjustable antennae are not 5dbi. It's $61.

    D-Link DIR-605L. Only a 1yr warranty, 10/100, but it's two fixed antennae are 5dbi. It's only $40.

    Both have reviews that state "great range" in most reviews, but the WZR-300HP has one review that actually says its range is worse than an old LinkSys G router! (How can an old G router have a greater range than an N router??) But the other reviews for it state its range is great. Same with the D-Link; maybe two reviews that state "poor range" where the others all say a great range.

    So are these 5dbi (fixed) antennae all they're cracked up to be, and should the D-Link have a greater range because of that? Or is that just a selling point and isn't as important as other factors for range....something that the Buffalo may have that the D-Link does not?

    If "no" to that referenced paragraph (a 300mb/s N "travel router" would still be 300mb even if attached to a wired 100mb RJ45 port), then I'll be getting that Zuni ZR301 that's in my first post.

    Thanks again Rah. ( when I can again).
    Last edited by Clint1; 10-09-2012 at 09:57 AM.
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  6. #6
    Administrator rah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint1
    But the "extra bandwidth" that would be used, would only be use for local networking, right?
    Correct, but if you ever get a faster internet connection this would also help in that it wouldn't be your network bottleneck.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clint1
    They're only called a "travel" router because of their simplicity on the road, like in hotels where you can hook it up to their wired network and then your tablet will be wireless. Same in the home when using it to "convert" one's existing wired router for use with wireless devices. But I'm still not clear on one thing: Please see again the paragraph that begins with "But what if this router can be fixed?" : If a 300mb/s wireless router is hooked up to a 100mb/s wired LAN output, (which is how they are hooked up), would not that 300mb/s wireless router then be only 100mb/s? If so, in that scenario, a 150mb/s wireless router would be enough. (And then I wouldn't do that but I would get a complete new 300mb N router with 10/100 RJ45 or better).
    My mistake, and yes the router's speed would be reduced between any devices that were talking across the wireless to wired connection.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clint1
    If my last paragraph above is "yes" (it would indeed be only 100mb), then I've been looking for quite a while now and only due to ratings I've got it narrowed down to two full-blown routers w/300mb N: ...
    Don't get caught up in the range parts of these. Truth be told you would probably get the exact same range across a lot of the products that are Wireless N inside a typical house, assuming there are no hardware defects. You won't get the range the boxes say they deliver either way.

    What it really comes down to is support (firmware updates), build quality, and warranty. For those reasons I've always been partial to Linksys (Cisco) and Netgear. Granted they tend to be a little more pricey than the ones you linked to, but I like the fact that they stay up on updating their products as new tweaks are made.

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    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rah View Post
    What it really comes down to is support (firmware updates), build quality, and warranty. For those reasons I've always been partial to Linksys (Cisco) and Netgear. Granted they tend to be a little more pricey than the ones you linked to, but I like the fact that they stay up on updating their products as new tweaks are made.
    I looked at LinkSys and Netgear, but the ratings just were not there on their full-size wired + 300mb N routers. There was one Netgear I was considering, (WNR3500L-100NAS) and the ratings on the refurb unit are better than the new one (refurb: 8% neg, 13% neg+bad; new: 14% neg, 24% neg+bad). Normally I avoid refurb anything that has a screen or moving parts, but in the case of something like a router that's an exception. Could be there was "an issue" with these and refurb'ing them fixed the issue. But the problem with a refurb Netgear is there's only a 90 day warranty where as their new units (at least the ones I checked) are lifetime.


    What it really comes down to is support (firmware updates),
    FWIW, the Buffalo routers actually come with DDWRT firmware but they also have the Buffalo firmware at their website as a more "user-friendly" option.


    Don't get caught up in the range parts of these. Truth be told you would probably get the exact same range across a lot of the products that are Wireless N inside a typical house, assuming there are no hardware defects. You won't get the range the boxes say they deliver either way.
    So what about these 5dbi antennae, you don't think there's a difference between one that uses them and one that does not?

    Thanks a bunch Rah.
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    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint1 View Post
    So what about these 5dbi antennae, you don't think there's a difference between one that uses them and one that does not?
    This is really getting frustrating. A 5dbi antenna is not any better nor worse than a 2dbi or any other. It's just different: http://www.geckoandfly.com/10213/wir...ge-comparison/
    It has to do with directionality. Omnidirectional Vs directional.

    And from the looks of that diagram/chart (near the bottom), if it is accurate, it would seem that 5dbi and above have massive dead spots...that can't be right.

    So why doesn't someone make a router with a 2dbi and a ~9dbi antenna????

    Well here's something I've never seen before!

    Errors
    The following errors occurred with your submissionYour submission could not be processed because the token has expired.

    Please reload the window.


    What is that all about?
    Last edited by Clint1; 10-10-2012 at 06:19 AM.
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    Administrator rah's Avatar
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    It's a session issue we have been experiencing recently. Did you happen to have WebProWorld open in multiple windows at the time?

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    WebProWorld MVP Clint1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rah View Post
    It's a session issue we have been experiencing recently. Did you happen to have WebProWorld open in multiple windows at the time?
    No, not at that time (but I had other websites open). I did however have the page open for a while before I posted, but, I also do that quite a lot and for much longer lengths of time and that never happened.
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