Everyone else goes wireless with radio waves buzzing through the air and I return to good old ethernet cables and a switch. Today a package came from Amazon containing the D-Link DHP-303/B Powerline 200Mbps and a 5 port switch (and an internal drive to replace the tiny one in my Dell laptop but that’s another story).
The D-Link Powerline product is actually two plugs that are inserted into your wall sockets and use the wires in your house to communicate. I was a little dubious about it working well but it’s been fine. One plug is downstairs by the DSL router, and the other is upstairs here in my office. They apparently talk at 200Mbps but I’d take that with a grain of salt. My computers talk at 100Mbps, as does the switch so I presume that’s the limiting speed. It’s plenty fast enough for my DSL but I’ll have to try a file transfer later.
For the last few years I used WiFi to bridge the gap between downstairs and upstairs but this works just as well, and file transfers between computers aren’t as dog slow as they were using wireless networking. Wifi was never as fast as it should have been, probably because the signal was weakened by:
- Travelling through a wooden telephone desk in the hall
- Travelling diagonally up the stairs
- Going through an internal wall with a CD shelf behind it
- and finally finding the antenna of my Linux laptop buried inside my desk
No chance eh? I once tried to force the connection to be 54Mbps but it failed half the time, the Xbox wouldn’t connect. It just didn’t work well. Oh, and sometimes, the cordless phone ringing downstairs knocked me offline! Didn’t matter what channel I was on.
Sheesh, I’m getting very old school. I changed back to Apache from Nginx last weekend, changed from P2 to a more traditional WordPress theme this morning, and then dumped wireless networking this afternoon. I hear vinyl records are making a come back.
I will plug in the wifi router again, for those moments when I want to work from the kitchen. Unless I get another D-Link powerline adaptor..