Need help with new setup

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Superhob, Sep 4, 2004.

  1. Superhob macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2004
    I plan on buying my second mac, an imac G5. I want to setup a wireless network with a windows pc, the imac and my powerbook. I have DSL.

    1. Other than cost and number of users, what's the difference between the Airport Express and Extreme?

    2. Is it safe to assume that a Linksys wireless G card in my XP desktop will be able to connect to either the express or extreme.

    3. Not really a question: I want to have the imac on my desk with only ONE wire (the power cable) hooked up to it. This would be like a dream come true compared to the current setup with USB hub, multiple wires, CRT monitor, big speakers, etc. My desk is a mess to say the least.

    4. Someone please tell me if this setup makes sense or if some parts are redundant and not necessary: Airport Extreme in Loft (connected to DSL modem) to maximize signal throughout the house (3000 sq ft), express in my room hooked up to speakers and printer. Imac on my desk with bluetooth for the keyboard and mouse, as well as Extreme card to connect to the network and lastly the old XP desktop in another room with the linksys card plugged in.

    This means I would have to buy the imac plus the airport express and airport extreme base station, extreme card and the bluetooth.

    Does this setup make sense? Please help!
  2. hotwire132002 macrumors 65816


    Jan 24, 2004
    Cadillac, MI
    1) I use a D-Link router for cost reasons, so I can't tell you many differences between Express and Extreme. However, I do know one difference--- and that would be AirTunes in Express.

    2) That's correct--your LinkSys card should connect to AirPort just fine.

    3) Bluetooth will get you a wireless keyboard and mouse, at the least. Good luck getting everything else wireless :) !

    4) Seems to make sense to me.
  3. tobio macrumors regular


    Sep 5, 2004
    That setup looks pretty sound to me, The only thing I would consider is the usual wireless security aspects. Specifically it says on page 23 of the airport express manual that when using it to extend the reach of your network (having two or more access points- a "wireless distribution system or WDS") you can't use WPA encryption. you have to use 128-bit WEP or no security at all. (whats the difference?)
  4. LeeTom macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2004
    The Extreme has an extra Ethernet port for wired clients, whereas the Express doesn't. Since you'll be using an Extreme and have all your clients be wireless, this shouldn't matter.

    Correct. Good to go.


    Makes perfect sense. One thing you might try is testing the difference between having the Extreme in the Loft, and at ground level. If I remember correctly, omnidirectional wireless stuff has the strongest signal in a "pancake" fashion... that is to say, you'll get the strongest signal at the same altitude as the access point.

    Lee Tom
  5. Superhob thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2004
    Thanks for all the help.

    I have a couple more questions:

    1. Does WEP encryption (128bit?) slow down the internet connection? Does it have any downsides versus the other type of security (WPA)?

    2. Does the express offer the same firewall protection that the extreme offers?

    Thanks again, you guys have been great!

    P.S. I went to the apple store yesterday to look at the new imac but they didn't have any. They said it would be 2 weeks before they have any on display. What a bummer... :(

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