pros and cons of built-in wireless networking?

  sheila.weston 15:49 14 Nov 09
Locked

I am comparing the Acer PCs on the John Lewis site - see click here and click here.

Neither has wireless networking.

Is this common with this price-range (£430 to £900)? Are there any advantages to having wireless networking built-in?

I expect to buy a new computer after Christmas and prefer J-L or, perhaps, PCWorld, where I can take it back if there are problems.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 16:02 14 Nov 09

Desktops tend to be situated in one location often next to a router and therefore are connected by cable.

Cable connection gives fastest possible download speed from your router/phone/ cable connection.

Wireless limited to for the old g type max 54mbs (never achievable in reality 20 mbs) the new n tpye routers are faster.

Fitting a wireless card is easy, fitting a wireless dongle is easier - just plug into a USB port.

Advantage of being built in - no work for you - under guarantee - saves a USB port.

Advantage of wireless over cable - PC does not need to be near router
Disadvantage - slower connection.

  Batch 18:06 14 Nov 09

Other advantages of cabled connection:

- Wireless users often suffer a variety of connection issues (just see the number of posts on this forum from bods with wireless issues) which cabled just doesn't suffer from.

- Cabled is inherently more secure. With wireless you need to set the security up appropriately to be protected.

  ambra4 00:28 15 Nov 09

Other Disadvantage: -

It is strongly recommended by All router suppliers that you use a physically connected cable

to the Router via a Ethernet RJ45 cable for router set-up.

Using a wireless connected computer for set-up is Not recommended to access the router setup

at any time.

  sheila.weston 11:40 15 Nov 09

Many thanks, all. Do these pcs allow a wireless connection to printers and scanner etc? I have obviously misunderstood the meaning of the 'wireless networking' expression. It would be good to reduce the number of cables on the desk-top.

  Batch 16:47 15 Nov 09

At the very minimum you will have a wireless router that will be wired to your external internet service connection (e.g. to your telephone provider).

Thereafter everything else (that connects over the network) inside the house can, theoretically, be wireless. But the pros and cons listed in the above postings need to be considered.

For example, the point that ambra4 is making is that you have at least one PC using wired networking. This is due to the vagaries of wireless networking and you really need to be in a position where you have at least one connection (to the router) that you can really rely on (not least so that you can resolve issues with the wireless side).

There are a whole host of things that can interfere with wireless. Most of the time they are not a problem. But when they are, they can be a real pain (just think how often you get interference on a mobile phone). Having wired to fall back on is good protection. Which suggests that even if you have a wireless printer, you should make sure that it configured (at both the PC and printer end) so that it can work over wired. Otherwise, if you need to print something urgently and the wireless is playing up, you could be stuck.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 16:53 15 Nov 09

Do these pcs allow a wireless connection to printers and scanner

only if the have a wireless card or dongle they can then be configure to talk direct to the printer or via the router.

  sheila.weston 16:57 15 Nov 09

Many thanks, Batch. Useful info. I hadn't realised that there could be problems with wireless printers etc - I'll keep this in mind. I'll mark this thread as resolved.

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