Posts Tagged Wireless LAN

Setting up the new machine


Introduction

After going through the initial setup on the machine, which I configured the date time, wireless network password, and the home group password. There were a couple of steps which I believed needed doing, before going forward with installing the drivers for the various pieces of musical hardware, and installing the music software.

Windows Update

This one is something you may thing, just one run and things will be fine. My experience has shown that the first run gets a bunch of updates, but you need a couple more “check for updates” to completely exhaust the list of things which need to be updated. The joys of having consequential update dependencies (update A installs component Y which has another update B available).

Networking

I’ve the machine talking straight to my gigabit switch (chunk of Cat 5 cable comes in handy), as the built-in wireless networking card “Dell Wireless 1510 Wireless-N WLAN Mini-Card” goes too slow (See Blog post » Dell Wireless 1510 Wireless-N WLAN Mini-Card – Slow!). The windows configuration start up wizard goes through the basics of the networking up and running.

Networking and Backup

One of the big “bug bears” I have with Windows 7 is that Windows 7 Backup will only backup to a network attached device in the higher levels of Windows 7 (Professional or Ultimate) . My preference is to backup my machines to my NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices. So, I need to upgrade the version Windows.

Another grumble at Dell, I was not presented with the option of upgrading, or specifying, the version of Windows 7 installed on the machine.

Conclusion

After doing the following:

  1. Making sure the version of Windows 7 has all of the patches installed from Windows Update,
  2. Upgrading the version of Windows 7 to Ultimate (it was only $20 difference between professional and ultimate through Windows Anytime Update),
  3. Replacing the wireless network interface with on that works at a reasonable speed, and
  4. Taking a full backup image of the system, before I start installing anything music related on the system.

Finally, I’m ready to start installing the music software, and music device drivers, I want to run on the system. That will be tomorrow, I need some relaxation time this evening. The “ups and downs” of the installation process, will undoubtedly be another post (or two) to this blog.

One important thing to note before I start installing. I will be installing all of the device drivers first for the music instrument interfaces first, and then the music software (Guitar Pro 5 to start with). I really want to give the software the best chance of installing as smoothly as possible, and this approach should minimise the chances of “things going wrong”.

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Dell Wireless 1510 Wireless-N WLAN Mini-Card – Slow!


Introduction

My new touch screen PC has arrived and guess what, I’ve a speed problem with the Dell Wireless 1510 Wireless-N WLAN Mini-Card again. This device seems to be slow, permanently! I’m only getting 96 mbps speed out of the thing.

With my Dell notebook, I purchased a USB N dongle, and fixed the problem. Well, more to the point, solved the problem by ignoring it, and installing something which works at 300mbps all the time.

Solution

Off I went to get another USB dongle, and install it into the new machine. I’m not going to try and sort out if the card can be convinced to work at 300mbps. I’ll probably disable the device altogether, I’m that “peeved” with the device, is putting my feelings mildly.

Conclusion

Why Dell persists with this device I have no idea. If I had the option of excluding it in the build of the machine, I would have made sure that I excluded it. But, excluding it from the build was not an option. So, now I have a new Netgear N Band USB dongle (Netgear N600 Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter WNDA3100) chewing up a USB port on the new machine (not a big problem there are plenty at the moment).

Advice

If you want to use N wireless at a reasonable speed, don’t get one of these cards. If you have the option of getting something else get it! Otherwise, if performance of you wireless link is important to you, go and buy a good N band UDB dongle (or card if you have a spare slot), and ignore the card Dell supplies.

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