question from potential switcher

inlimbo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 29, 2005
411
0
Sydney, Australia
Hi,

Im going to buy a 15" powerbook whenever Apple decides to release the well-rumored speed-bumped G4 or G5. I have a few stupid newbie questions so please excuse my ignorance (ive been using windows too long havent I).

1) Wi-Fi: Powerbooks come with the AirPort Extreme card. If I go to any of these facy wi-fi hotspots in hotels, coffee shops etc... can i be just as confident as someone with a wi-fi enabled PC that i will be able to access the internet. (I dont really understand this wi-fi stuff). i.e. is the Airport express card just as compatable at these wi-fi hotspots as any PC card?
2) Wirless networking between powerbook and Windows XP PC: I want to wirlessly network my Powerbook to my PC so I can access my DSL internet and my printer. I was told that I dont have to buy an Airport Express base station. Rather "that third-party wireless routers are a lower-cost alternative to buying the Airport Express, and will work just fine with an Airport card equipped Mac." Is this correct.
Can anyone suggest a good compatable router?

Looking forward to the switch but these are questions that i making me doubt if I can switch. I soo bad want one of those sexy PBs! :D

Cheers
inlimbo....
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
As above
1 - yes and very easily if your location is set to 'Automatic'. You lift the lid and it tells you there's a network and do you want to join it. Very easy - start Safari and it will come up with the payment/log in details (if any) and you're sorted.

2 - pretty much any router that has a web-based interface will be fine.
If the PC has a wireless card you may not need a router, you could just share the connection through the PC (although it will have to be on and connected to the internet whenever you were going to use the PB online). If you plan on leaving the printer plugged into the PC, then the PC will have to be on when you want to print wirelessly from the Powerbook. That's when the Express comes into its own - plug your printer in that and a cable to your stereo and suddenly instead of having just a wireless network, you also have a basic print server and a music system.
 
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igucl

macrumors 6502a
Oct 11, 2003
569
17
I agree with the above posters. I would point out, though, that sometimes you get what you pay for. The cheaper routers will work, but the AirPort branded routers work very smoothly and easily, in my experience. I hope you enjoy your Powerbook.
 
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inlimbo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 29, 2005
411
0
Sydney, Australia
I also read on Apple's pages that some ISPs arent compatible with Apple's Airport stuff? So if I use another third party router and not an Airport base station then that wont by a problem right? But if I use an Airport base station that will be a problem? My ISP wont support Apple (well they said it might work, they dont know - morons!).

Cheers
inlimbo...
 
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cubixcrayfish

macrumors member
Mar 21, 2004
73
0
So if I had a PD with Airport installed on it, i would be able to get onto my future college's wireless network with no hassle?
 
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stubeeef

macrumors 68030
Aug 10, 2004
2,702
2
I have found I get on wifi's faster/easier than my pc friends!

I like the airport express, it costs more, but I have had zero issues with it, and i use my dell laptop from work at home on the apple express gear no problem (well no more than any other pc problems). I try to buy apple products when I can, they just seem to mesh better.
 
Comment

igucl

macrumors 6502a
Oct 11, 2003
569
17
inlimbo said:
I also read on Apple's pages that some ISPs arent compatible with Apple's Airport stuff? So if I use another third party router and not an Airport base station then that wont by a problem right? But if I use an Airport base station that will be a problem? My ISP wont support Apple (well they said it might work, they dont know - morons!).

Cheers
inlimbo...
Well, I don't see why it wouldn't work, but I'm no expert. I would take my chances with the Apple stuff.
 
Comment

igucl

macrumors 6502a
Oct 11, 2003
569
17
cubixcrayfish said:
So if I had a PD with Airport installed on it, i would be able to get onto my future college's wireless network with no hassle?
What's a "PD"?
 
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