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All posts tagged "router"


Friday, August 17, 2012

When A Router Aspires To Be More

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:30 PM

http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-3132_7...network-storage

"However, if your needs are limited to casual usage, such as sharing documents and streaming music and photos, then a router with built-in network storage capability -- one that comes with internal storage or can host an external storage device and shares that with the rest of the network -- fits the bill better."

I would have to agree with the first suggestion made in the article, that if you have serious storage needs, a dedicated NAS is the way to go. Networking companies have been looking for ways to differentiate themselves by adding more features to their routers. From NAS capabilities, to sharing USB printers to cloud functionality. However, if you are on a budget, a router can function as a competent NAS. A decent NAS can cost quite a few shiny pennies, where a NAS capable router can be had for dirty pennies. Transfer rates will be slower, but it does mean that you have one less device to manage for your home "data center."


Friday, July 6, 2012

Cisco Gives You Your Router Back

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:30 PM

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012...router-setting/

"We told you earlier today about how Cisco is pushing a cloud-based WiFi router management service onto customers of certain Linksys devices—and that to use the service customers must agree to a list of anti-porn and anti-piracy clauses. The trouble is that for customers with automatic firmware updates turned on, the traditional (and very useful) router management tools available in a Web browser at the address 192.168.1.1 became completely unavailable. Instead, you had to sign up for Cisco’s cloud service, roll back your firmware, or just forget about using advanced router management features."

Cisco has since reversed their position on forcing you to use their cloud connected service, but the issue remains that a company could do this. While I wonder how many people this actually affected, the idea that a company could fundamentally change something you own is disconcerting and in particular, their service agreement which outlined what you could or could not do with the new service they have imposed on you. This issue does go beyond your own router, but to many services. Lots of people use web services such as Gmail, or Facebook or Twitter. Every one of those companies has the ability to change their service and limit what you can do.

The biggest lesson learned is to make sure you have control over your own data. In particular, if you use any of the above services, make sure you have a copy of it (there are many ways) for yourself so that if a company blocks you out, the affect on you is minimized. As for Cisco's kerfuffle, that is just one reason why I use an alternate firmware, dd-wrt, to handle my internet connection.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Get Help With Your Router Troubles

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 11:00 AM

http://lifehacker.com/5910788/why-d...ow-can-i-fix-it

"My router sucks. My connection goes wonky once every few days, and I have to unplug the router and reboot it (I believe this is called a hard reset) to fix the problem. Obviously, this is incredibly annoying. What can I do to just make the darn thing work properly?"

I imagine many people do not give their routers a second thought. Either bought by themselves, or provided to them by their ISP, the router is the most critical aspect of your home network. I have not seen the demands on routers significantly change over the years, with many people I know having routers that are easily 8-10 years of age. I personally suggest friends use custom firmware such as Tomato or DD-WRT, the stock firmware available with many routers usually tend to perform quite well. Our demands on routers are fairly modest, yet, like any electronic device, it can eventually die out. That is why if the Internet is absolutely critical to your existence as a human being, aside from any troubleshooting of your router, I also think it a good idea to have a backup router. Its a proven fact that most electronics die when stores are closed and no one is available to help.

Tags: hardware, router, isp

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Want to Run an App? There's a Router for that!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:30 PM

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105...enabled-router/

"The Linksys EA4500, EA3500, and EA2700 -- the "A" designation being short for "app-enabled" -- look like models in the earlier E Series but have more-powerful hardware and support Cisco Connect Cloud, the next generation of Cisco Connect software. The EA4500, for example, looks exactly the same as the original Linksys E4200, but the differences inside are significant."

While I love the idea of apps for a home router, I do not know if it will find much success. Apps for home server type machines have been tried before. Windows Home Server offers apps. Various other NAS devices also offer the ability for apps. None of them have found any significant success. I think the primary reason for this is that while there are benefits to hosting your own apps, most people have taken to the cloud as their main computing resource. With people being so mobile these days, why have something at your home base that you have to maintain when the cloud can do it? I certainly see value, and do run a lot of server like apps out of my home, but I do not think it will appeal to most people.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

D-Link's New DHP-1565 Hits the Sweet Spot?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 11:30 PM

http://ces.cnet.com/8301-33368_1-57...-hits-the-spot/

"In my opinion, the DHP-1565 is a much-needed upgrade to its first hybrid router, the DHP-1320 Wireless N PowerLine Router. Nothing is wrong with the DHP-1320. In fact, it's a great router. The only problem is that it lacks both of what I consider "must-have" features for routers and a power-line device: Gigabit Ethernet and support for the latest 500Mbps Powerline AV standard."

If you're not fortunate enough to have ethernet run to the rooms in our house where you need it, and you happen to live in WiFi signal hell, powerline networking is a viable option now. D-Link's new router supports 500Mbps powerline speeds, which is a big boost from where things used to be a few years ago (think two-digit numbers in terms of real-world speeds). I've never implemented powerline networking technology myself - any Digital Home Thoughts done so? How did it work out for you?


Monday, January 9, 2012

Amped Wireless High Power R10000 Router Review

Posted by Chris Sacksteder in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:30 AM

Amped Wireless High Speed Router

Product Category: Home Router / Wireless Access Point
Manufacturer: Amped Wireless
Where to Buy: Amazon [Affiliate]
Price: $119.99
System Requirements: A computer with Ethernet for setup.
Specifications: Band: 2.4GHz, 80211b/g/n. MIMO. 300Mbps. Security: WEP, WPA, WPA. Output power: 29dBi. Antennas: dual 5dBi removable. Ports: 4 10/100Mb and one 10/100Mb up link.

Pros:

  • Excellent wireless coverage;
  • Fast data transfer;
  • Easy setup.

Cons:

  • Ethernet ports only 10/100Mb (Gigabit model coming soon);
  • Single 2.4GHz band (dual band model coming after the Gigabit version).

Summary: If you have spots in your home with poor wireless coverage, or find streaming HD video often breaks up, the high powered Amped Wireless R10000 router may be a better solution than adding one or more additional access points. Our tests show this device really does provide wide coverage and high speed.

Read more...


Friday, July 22, 2011

D-Link and OpenDNS Team Up

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home News" @ 02:30 PM

http://techcrunch.com/2011/07/20/d-...to-your-router/

"Today's kids have grown up in a world where the internet has always been around, Google has always been there to help, and having a smartphone is the norm. It only follows that they'd be super comfortable with the web, using it just as proficiently, if not more so, than their parents. That's all well and good, but there's this one pretty huge problem: the internet is dangerous. That's why D-Link and OpenDNS have partnered to put OpenDNS on all new models of consumer model D-Link routers."

I use OpenDNS myself, and in addition to the added benefit of super-snappy DNS performance, the parental controls are a nice touch. Having it integrated at the router level is a great idea, as long as D-Link has improved their usually obscure router user interface. If they haven't, your average parent isn't going to be able to control the OpenDNS settings any easier than they could in the browser. Any other OpenDNS users out there?


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Time to Upgrade that Router!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 04:30 PM

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2011/04/belkin-n750db/

"Belkin has announced that its N750DB router would be available in the next couple of weeks. The Belkin N750DB is the brand’s top of the line router and has features such as multiple antennas, multiple wireless bands, USD ports, wireless printing, network attached storage functionality.. and more."

If there ever was a product line that needed designed obsolescence, it would be the router. While they are pretty common-place now, very few things tend to go wrong with them. My current router is going on 8 years old and it still performs quite admirably. With the networking space changing very little over the years, I would expect most people's routers to be of a similar age.

So how do you convince people to upgrade to the latest and greatest? Make your router offer everything under the sun. NAS capabilities, wireless printing, etc. The only thing Belkin is missing with their N750DB is that funky LCD display they tried for a while. I guess there is such a thing as having too many features.


Friday, April 8, 2011

The Perfect Combination

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Digital Home Talk" @ 09:00 AM

http://lifehacker.com/#!5789734/wha...e-wi+fi-routers

"We've featured tons and tons of methods for boosting your Wi-Fi signal. We've upgraded out routers with DD-WRT to make them extra powerful. There is no dearth of available tips for getting the most out of a router, but what's the best combination? What hardware works best with what strategies? Let us know what you think."

Have you modified your Wi-Fi router from the standard configuration to get better performance and control? Tell us what configuration you are using (Hardware, Firmware, etc.) We want to know what the best combination is.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cisco Releases New Linksys E-Series - Very Simple Design

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 06:00 PM

http://www.engadget.com/2011/04/05/...routers-and-sw/

"If you dig the stylish look on the Linksys E4200 802.11n router but prefer something more wallet-friendly, then Cisco's latest range of home routers and switches will likely suit your taste. Gone are the curved grooves and blinking LEDs on the top, but these routers -- ranging from $59.99 to $159.99 -- still go about their usual wireless business at up to 300Mbps, with additional simultaneous dual-band support on the pricier E2500 and E3200. Like their predecessors, you'll also find a refreshed, feature-packed Cisco Connect software suite in the box, which promises to make installation and management a whole lot easier."

No more blinking lights? Just a nice sleek simple look? I guess I could get used to that. And the price isn't too shabby either. I think they're onto something here. These actually tempt me to replace my perfectly good router at home for no good reason. Now that's marketing! Follow the link for more detailed specs.


Friday, July 9, 2010

Linksys E3000 Wireless-N Router

Posted by Reid Kistler in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 04:30 PM

http://www.maximumpc.com/article/re...000_wifi_router

"Cisco's new Linksys E-series routers look a lot like the WRT-series routers they replace, complete with the weird flying-saucer motif and internal antennas. All the new features are under the hood and in the setup software. As befits a flagship product, the E3000 is a dual-band (2.4GHz and 5GHz) router that enables you to operate two discrete wireless networks simultaneously. You can also operate a virtual guest network on the 2.4GHz band that limits clients to Internet access, isolating them from the rest of your network."

Sitting at the top of their current home router line, the Linksys E3000 High Performance Wireless-N Router looks like a winner on the basis of style alone (although apparently at the cost of a vertical stand option). Toss in 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports, dual-band capability "optimized for streaming HD video," 6 internal antennas, and a built-in UPnP AV media server, and it would appear to be an easy purchase decision. Still, Michael Brown, at MaximumPC.com, notes several shortcomings in its performance and control software, and feels it falls short of their category winner. Read his review for more details, including comparative performance test results!


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