When last we left this story our protagonist had returned the Cisco AP to BUY.COM leaving le maison du Graves without functional wifi for about two weeks. Fortunately I was out of town a lot during that period so it wasn’t much of an inconvenience. If anything it gave me some time to evaluate my options regarding replacement gear.
I’ve noted that whereas I had a lot of problems with 802.11n type wifi APs I’d previously had far fewer issues with 802.11g type hardware. Very recently I was reminded by someone who should know that 802.11a/b/g is more mature hardware than 802.11n. This certainly rings true as my very old Linksys WAP-54G ran for literally years with no problems at all.
There are myriad inexpensive consumer routers available that include wifi functionality, but far fewer freestanding wifi access points (AP.) I surmise that this is because every broadband connected home needs a router and wants a wifi AP, so a converged device is the most affordable approach to this marketplace. Yet in many ways it’s less than ideal.
The fact that your router and wifi access point are in one device makes that device a major possible single point of failure. It dies and your entire network goes down. While merely inconvenient for the kids coming home after school to play World Of Warcraft, it’s a whole different kind of failure if you’re a full-time home office worker who relies on internet access to be effective in your job.
This is part 2 in the continuing saga of my fight with replacing a dead Netgear WNR-2000 that had served a my wifi AP. Please recall that I just RMA’d the Cisco WAP4410N that was to be its replacement.
Firstly, I think that I was a very early adopter of both residential broadband and wifi. Linksys was the obvious leader in devices for this market. I bought a Linksys WAP-11 when they were brand new and fairly pricey. I wired it into my trusty Linksys BEFSR-41 4-port wired router. That device was fed by a Time-Warner Road Runner cable modem back in 1998.
When last year it was announced that Houston was to get municipal wifi network I had to applaude Mayor Bill White for his vision and drive. There are vast number of people in this city for whom the internet is not readily accessible.
Houston is a huge city with a more pronounced digital divide than many other places. It’s the kind of place where opportunity presented to low income neighborhoods can make a big difference in the lives of people.
Matt Brunk is apparently getting a sample of the new Cisco/Linksys IP310. In the comment trail to his blog post he notes that, yes it looks like an 802.11 b/g device. The real question is its support for WMM, which can occasionally be found in the latest generation of 802.11g devices.
This is interesting to me as I have a couple of older Linksys WAP54G access points that I’ve been meaning to replace. These were the first generation hardware and have been a little flaky the past few months.
If I’m going to replace them then I’d like to know that I’m choosing APs that are well adapted to VoWifi should I later go that route. I also want POE capable APs so that I can mount them more located for more ideal range.