How best to setup my LAN

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by potterspread, Nov 17, 2010.

  1. potterspread macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2005
    I'm struggling to find the best approach here. Here's what I got:

    1) Mac Mini 2.0Ghz running Snow Leopard
    2) Mac Book Pro 2.53Ghz running Leopard
    3) Mac Book 2.0Ghz running Leopard

    My wife and I each use a laptop as our regular computer. The Mac Mini we just picked up and are looking to use it as a home server (although it doesn't have Snow Leopard Server).

    We use a program for our business called Daylite that hosts a database that we share between laptops - this is being hosted on the Mac Mini, which will always be powered on so we each can access it. There are also a couple folders that we would like to share on the Mac Mini.

    This Mac Mini will also sit next to our HDTV to be used for streaming, HULU Netflix, etc..

    My problem is that I don't know the best way to configure the Mac Mini on the network.

    I have a Verizon Actiontec Router and Comcast Internet (Dynamic IP, although it has been the same for some time).

    My questions are:

    1) Does it make a difference if I have the Mac Mini directly plugged into the router via ethernet vs wireless? Right now, when we try and File Share between the Mac Mini and laptops, it takes forever to connect, navigate, save files, especially if I am saving to the Mac Mini, from a laptop using Photoshop or even Word.

    2) Do I gain anything from running the cable modem directly to the Mac Mini and the enable Internet Sharing from the two laptops, as opposed to using the router?

    3) I transferred 1 gig worth of files from a laptop to the Mac Mini and it literally took an hour. I retried it using a direct connection via eithernet between the two computers and it took 10 minutes. I'm hoping that optimizing my setup will speed up my local network transfers. Yes, no?

    4) Can I used a Mini DVI to HDMI adapter from my Mac Mini to my tv? If so, does this also send audio signal? It's an Early 2009 Mac Mini.

    Thanks for your help!
  2. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Mar 17, 2008
    1) wired is faster and more reliable than wireless
    2) I let routers deal with the sharing and plug all computers into the router (I am sure there are arguments for letting the computer do connection sharing, but I get better wireless signal from routers than any computer I have tried).
    3) If the laptop and mini are connected via a cable (even through a router) things will be fast. If one of the computers is wireless, things will still be slow (although wireless N should be faster than 1 gig/hour).
    4) The cable will work for video. Very rarely can audio be transmitted through DVI (there are some cases where the computer can include it, but I'm not sure if the mini is one of them). A separate audio cable is the easiest approach.
  3. dXTC macrumors 68020


    Oct 30, 2006
    Up, up in my studio, studio
    I've just looked at the datasheet for the MI424WR Actiontec router, and I strongly suspect that yours is WiFi G. This would explain the slow transfer rate.

    You'll need to call Verizon to see whether your router can be upgraded to N via firmware. If not, you're looking at getting a new WiFi N router.

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