Netgear G54 WGR614 54 Mbps 1-Port 10/100 Wireless G Router (WGR614-900PES) Reviews
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Netgear G54 WGR614 54 Mbps 1-Port 10/100 Wireless G Router (WGR614-900PES)

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My First Wireless Router

Feb 21, 2008
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Ease of Installation:
  • Ease of Use:

Pros:Small footprint, handsome case.

Cons:Requires serious Guru if you lose the CD.

The Bottom Line: I recommend this to anyone who needs a secure, simple, wireless access point.


I am totally satisfied with the "touchless" use of this wireless router. It works great with both my home network, and the DSL modem/router that I use to connect to my local ISP.

Specifications
The specs for this router are pretty standard for any wireless router. It's got five ethernet ports in the back. One port plugs into your broadband router (more on that later) and the other four ethernet ports are for wired internet devices. In lieu of a fifth port, as wired routers often have, it has an antennae that transponds a wireless ethernet connection.

There's a whole alphabet soup of wireless protocols out there, and I often get confused which is which. This one uses 802.11G. The "G" is important because although it's only about half as fast (54MBPS) as others, it's works with a wider variety of devices... or so the salesman tells me!

Internet Access
You can't use this router INSTEAD of your broadband modem but rather, in ADDITION to your broadband router. This is because it doesn't have the PPoE features that DSL and Cable modems require. However, it does work with just about any ethernet network in use in homes, so as long as you're connected to the Internet already, you're good.

My Usage
I had just acquired a Tablet PC and needed a wireless router so that I could work around the house. My Tablet works just fine with wired connections, but the idea of not being teathered to the wall seemed wonderful.

I bought this router the stupid way - and got lucky. I went to the local Fry's outlet and bought the cheapest wireless router on the shelf - this one. I followed the four or five lines of instructions in the manual and it worked immediately.

Total time from opening the box to using the wireless connection was about 10 minutes. The install CD configured not only the router, but my PC as well.

Security
I'm no security guru - but according to the "properties" of my wireless card in Windows, there are a LOT of folks in my neighborhood who are also running wireless connections... and past experience tells me that at least a few of them are hackers. I've seen no indication that any of them have successfully tried to get into my network.

I, on the other hand, immediately got into one of theirs when I guessed the password for their network - which was the same as the name for their network. I disconnected immediately, but still laugh about that one.

There are two kinds of security here - WAP and WEP. WEP is supposedly more secure, but I chose WAP because... I don't know why. To setup WAP security, the install wizard asked me for 3 pieces of information... a name for my network, a password for my network, and a password for my computer. Oddly, one password had to be NO MORE THAN 8 characters.

I've been using this router now for about a week and I plan on keeping it until it breaks. Even though it's not as fast as some others might be, it's still faster than my DSL connection works, and I've seen NO performance degradation from my old, wired system.


Recommend this product? Yes


Amount Paid (US$): 45
Driver Availability: Windows, Linux, and Mac


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