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Need a new router/hub/switch(what to call it?)

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#1
Hey guys, I'm using an all wired internet solution in my apartment (as I hate wireless) with my netgear router. The poor lil' guy keeps crashing on me so I have to unplug it and start over about once a day.

What do I need to look for to replace it? I'll never use the wireless feature, but I do need multiple computers to be getting internet simultaneously. I thought it was a switch but a tech guy on the phone told me a switch will not work for multiple computers... which leaves me with :confused::confused::confused:

In short, what do I need? A switch, a router (w/o wireless)? And what would you recommend?

Thanks :)

Also, I realize I can just buy one with the wireless and turn it off, but why pay for something I won't use if I don't have to. :)
 

newtekie1

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#2
You need a router. Pretty much all of them come with wireless today, and the strictly wired ones are crap, so avoid those. Just turn the wireless off if you don't want to use it, or leave it on with a very strong WPA key, either way is good. You can even pull the antennas off if you prefer.

The WRT54GL loaded with the Tomato 3rd Party firmware is probably one of the most stable consume routers I've ever had the pleasure of using.

The Buffalo WHR-HP-G54 w/ Tomato is a slightly cheaper alternative since newegg is currently doing $10 w/ Promo code EMCZZYN24. It should be just as stable as the WRT54GL, the WRT54GL just has better wireless thanks to the dual antennas, but you don't really care about that so I'd go with the Buffalo.
 
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#3
as newtekie said , most routers will simply come with wireless. you are not paying for something extra - it's like saying i will never use the airbag in this car so take it out and charge me less - not gonna happen.

a switch is only smart enough to forward packets to a designated machine - meaning if you don't have a (router) to tell it what machine is where, etc - then it does no good. your cable modem won't route, it will only assign one address. if you have one machine with two NICS you can have it get your internet, and then share it through a switch. you just need something(router,pc w/nics) to assign addresses to each machine, and then route to them(manually will not cut it)

i recommend just getting a wrt54g , and if you need more ports a green gigabit switch on top of it. that's my solution and it works wonders - and wifi is always there for clients or family, etc.
 
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#4
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#5
This router is probably the best (in terms of routing speed and simultaneous connections) for under $100
EnGenius ESR9850 802.11b/g/n Wireless Gigabit Rout...

I have installed/configured many of them now and haven't gotten any complaints.
it's a good router - but it's main feature is wireless N which the OP doesn't care about. there are only 4 LAN ports so it offers no advantage over a 54g in this case. that being said - there's really no advantage either way.
my main reason for this post is to point out that for 99.99% of people a gigabit router is unnecessary. They will never get past 100 or most people even 10MB/s on their WAN so having 1000 available is senseless.

however, the one you noted has a nice price point so if 4 LAN ports are enough, i'd recommend the OP go with that. if 4 is not enough, then i recommend the 54g with a gigabit switch to increase ports.
either way he will spend about $60USD total.
 
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#6
Both are $60 as you said...
So why go with a 10/100 g router over a 10/100/1000 n router (unless you really want ddrwt/tomato that bad.....)? Especially when the 10/100/1000 router has the fastest routing performance (regardless of being wireless, you can turn it off) of any router for less then $100? And it handles the most simultaneous connections (if you're a torrent whore) for less then $100 or running your own firewall distro setup.
 
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#7
If you use your local network to move files around, get a router that supports 1Gbps linkss because it will save you a ton of time when moving large files around the network. If you only care about internet, it really doesn't matter (unless your connection is >100MB/s).
 
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#8
Both are $60 as you said...
So why go with a 10/100 g router over a 10/100/1000 n router .......
however, the one you noted has a nice price point so if 4 LAN ports are enough, i'd recommend the OP go with that.
if 4 is not enough, then i recommend the 54g with a gigabit switch to increase ports.
either way he will spend about $60USD total.
amazing you can quote the third line but not consider the two before. i recognize i was a little here and there - but i very clearly stated the answer to your question before you asked. not sure what happened there.

and again, my point was technical.
a router is most often for connecting your computer to an outside network. almost no one needs gigabit speeds for personal use connecting to outside networks. even 50MB fios is under 100, which is less that 1000. therefore gigabit is unnecessary.

however computer <-> computer on a lan gigabit can come in handy for most people, which is why i recommend a switch - which is what does the majority of the work on the lan and costs about $20 for 5 ports.

the OP didn't want to pay for wifi if he wasn't using it, I figured he like me didn't see a need for gigabit wan when it is useless and unnecessary to pay for.
 
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#9
I figured he like me didn't see a need for gigabit wan when it is useless and unnecessary to pay for.[/QUOTE]
It's the sentence above and the similar in the post before that had me stumbling....

I read your whole post, technical or not... 2 devices are the same price... whether you were looking for gigabit or even wireless of any kind why wouldn't you go with the device that offered more/faster speeds (we are on an overclocking/hardware enthusiast site, right?)?

So no one uses their router as a switching device as well? Everyone just plugs their modem into the wan port then runs a cable from one of the lan ports to a seperate possible 5 port switch which lowers it down to a 4 port switch anyways?

With the router in question you get near wire speed from its switch..... Well it does tout wireless N, that is no way it's MAIN feature. They seem to be more proud of the fact that it will handle 19k+ connections without dumping and that it gets near wire speed on it's switch which no router for less then $100 has been capable of. Wireless N seems to be thrown on to fit with the rest of the routers out now, hence it's not wifi certified. The wireless N works, and it works well. And not being ceritifed did indeed drop the price a bit compared to say dlink.
 
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#10
I figured he like me didn't see a need for gigabit wan when it is useless and unnecessary to pay for.
It's the sentence above and the similar in the post before that had me stumbling....

I read your whole post, technical or not... 2 devices are the same price... whether you were looking for gigabit or even wireless of any kind why wouldn't you go with the device that offered more/faster speeds (we are on an overclocking/hardware enthusiast site, right?)? .
the fault was mine in under-assuming the price of the wrt54

my point was that a 54g AND a gigabit switch is a better option than the router you proposed IF you need more than 4 ports. that's all i meant. I just thought the 54 was a little cheaper to make the prices equal WITH the switch included with the 54, excluded with yours.

my bad.

but one more point - in my mind enthusiast doesn't necessarily mean paying for extra features whether they will get used or not. i think it means knowing your stuff so you can make an informed decision. and only buy what you need at a price that makes sense. i was wrong on my prices :(
 

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#11
So why go with a 10/100 g router over a 10/100/1000 n router (unless you really want ddrwt/tomato that bad.....)?
I would take a 100M WirelessG router with Tomato/DDWRT over a 1000M WirelessN router without.
 
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#12
what makes the tomato/ddwrt so much better? Just more reliable or more tweaking options?

oh and thanks for the responses guys :)

final edit: I ended up getting the buffalo. Thanks newtekie for the advice and heads up on the promo! :toast:
 
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#13
what makes the tomato/ddwrt so much better? Just more reliable or more tweaking options?

oh and thanks for the responses guys :)
just like rooting or jailbreaking a phone (not piracy)

unlocking the potential of the hardware. allowing it to do things it could do anyway, except for the fact that the manufacturer didn't program / give you software to do it.

better control over routing, firewall, vpn, nat, signal strength, etc, and so on. if you need a professional series router without the price you flash ddwrt on it, and all the sudden it has more options.

that being said - it's of no use to alot of people. you are right on the line. using more than 4 or so computers on a network imo warrants a look, but it may not be necessary for you. it's the first thing i do with a new router though :)
 
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#14
And beyond that, if you have a spare machine or even laptop laying around you could look into firewall distros. Especially since your not looking for wireless, firewall distro + any sort of switch would work to and give you a crap ton of options and maybe even some light experience with linux if warranted.

At my house I switch between a primary firewall distro (untangle) and two other laptops that I use to test other firewall distros... Then that connects to whatever router I'm testing at the time, in this case it is a 9850.... and then that connects back to a closet that serves the rest of the house.