View Full Version : Wireless queries

May 12, 2005, 10:33 AM
I'm thinking of setting up a wireless network when I buy an iBook so that I can sit outside with it and browse the web. First of all, I assume that the Apple base station will work with a PC but was wondering, can both the PC and my laptop be browsing the web at the same time without getting in each others way? The other question is that recently, my Mum has got it in to her head that having a wireless network around 24/7 is harmful, (like mobile phone radiation.) I have tried to reassure her but it hasn't worked. Therefore is it possible to disable the base station as a wireless router, but keep it working for the wired link to the PC, or would you have to unplug it all?
Any advice would be much appreciated.

May 12, 2005, 10:37 AM
You can browse simultaneously with multiple systems - the only side effect is that, depending on your download speed, you might notice some slowdown, since all browsers are sharing the same main connection via your modem.

You can shut down the wireless transmission. However, the radiation is no worse than - and as weak as - the radio, TV, wireless phone, microwave, etc. background radiation that is constantly around you. Turning off wireless transmission from your Airport, Linksys, whatever won't in any way alter your "risks".

May 12, 2005, 10:39 AM
Note also that even the mobile phone risks - which are still apocryphal at this point - are only there when the phone is held directly against your head or, again subject to much argument, when you use a wired earpiece.

Unless you plan on duct-taping the Airport to your head, your risk is zero. Not "a tiny bit". Zero.

May 12, 2005, 11:11 AM
Thanks for that. Just wondering, I currently have a USB modem so after buying the iBook and a base station, what cables would I need to connect the modem to the base station and then the base station to my PC?

May 12, 2005, 11:33 AM
Your USB modem won't work with an Apple basestation - it needs to be an ethernet connection. Ethernet ADSL modems are relatively cheap now (from about 25 - less on Ebay). Your iBook will work with any wireless router (you can get integrated wireless modem/routers from about 70 now) - it doesn't have to be the Apple one although they do allow you to print wirelessly or (with the Airport Express) to stream music to your stereo (only really useful if your stereo is near your internet connection!).

If you pick up an Airport Express, your PC will need a wireless adaptor. If you pick up an Airport Extreme, it will need an ethernet port. Alternatively, make sure that the ADSL modem/router you get can output a signal to both an ethernet and USB port and plug the Airport into the Ethernet port and your PC into the USB port. Most of the third party (Netgear, Linksys, Dlink) intergrated wireless modem/routers have ethernet/usb ports.

May 12, 2005, 12:43 PM
I have the Sagem f@ast 800 modem, with two Dell PCs, (not sure if ithey have ethernet) and will be getting an iBook with an Airport Extreme card. Apart from that I have nothing extra to do with setting up a wireless network. I would like to be able to print wirelessly but don't want AirTunes. Although I am competent on computers, I don't know a huge amount of the technical names etc so I have read the advice above but found it a bit difficult to understand.
Simply put, what should I get to set up a wireless network?

May 14, 2005, 03:53 AM
Anyone who can help?

mad jew
May 14, 2005, 04:21 AM
Well timmyb, an AirPort Extreme base station would fulfil your needs but it's pretty pricey. The Express, although cheaper, only has one ethernet port so you'd have to either give all the computers wireless cards or get a separate router that will then lead into the Express.

Of course, there are many cheap alternatives from other companies that you might wanna check out. Just make sure it has more than one ethernet port and it'll work with a Mac (most of them do). Maybe check this (http://www.linksys.com/products/group.asp?grid=33&scid=35) page out for some other good wireless access points. I'm not sure if they'll have wireless printing though.

How do you currently split the internet between the Dells? Do you have a router already?

May 14, 2005, 06:18 AM
How do you currently split the internet between the Dells? Do you have a router already?
Only one has internet access at the moment, so that would be a bonus of having the wireless network.

May 14, 2005, 07:33 AM
Timmy, you're going to have to go and do some investigative work at your end. And give us all the information - you started off with one PC which has now turned into connecting two of them. We'll help as much as we can but my knowledge, at least, is limited to very basic networks of router - airport - wireless Mac. It may be easier for you to gather the information below and going to your nearest good computer store and ask their advice - they'll also be able to identify at which points in the conversation you look lost; at least then you'll also have some comeback if what they tell you fails to work since you can return stuff.

Go and find out whether your Dells have ethernet built-in (the symbol is <...> or similar) or it might be in the 'About This Computer' or whether you'll have to use USB to connect them to the internet. Or any spare PCI slots where you could install either an ethernet or a wireless card.

Does your current Sagem modem have any other ports on it? Does it just have the USB that goes out to the PC at the moment? Are there any unused ethernet ones on it?

How far apart are your Dells? In the same room or on different floors of the house? Does it matter if you can only get internet access to one of them?

Basically, you need to find a modem/router which has enough ports on it for all the computers you are going to use 'wired' with it - they can be a mixture of USB or ethernet ones - plus an ethernet one for your iBook or wifi router to plug into. You can buy a modem/router which has wireless built-in or you can buy a wifi access point (like an Airport express) which you'll need to plug into the ethernet port on the router.

This wifi router combo will live beside your 'wired' PC and plug into that (by USB or ethernet) much as your current modem does. Your iBook will pick up with wireless signal and use that from wherever. The second PC is where problems come in depending on where it is. If it's the same room, fine. Just add another USB/Ethernet cable from the router to the PC. If it's somewhere altogether different, you'll need either a v long cable or get it a wireless card (you can get some that you install internally in a PCI slot or others that plug into a USB port) so it can share the wireless connection.

Wireless printing can work in two ways. If you get the router with separate wifi point (like the Express), you can plug the printer into the USB port on the airport express and print wirelessly from any of the other computers on the network. If you go with the integrated modem/router, then you could leave the printer attached to the PC and enable printer sharing and just use that one from your iBook (the PC would have to be on though)

May 14, 2005, 09:10 AM
Thanks very much for the help Applespider, I'll start my research.