Login    Forum    Search    FAQ

Board index » Upgrading and Repairing Forum » Network Hardware & Configuration




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 2 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Questions about Routers, Print Servers, and IPV6
 Post Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:50 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 7:16 am
Posts: 43
Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Hi Scott!

I am venturing into setting up my first home network, and I have a few questions...

As I recall from your Windows book that I borrowed from our public library, you mentioned that one should connect the telephone line to the ADSL modem, then the router to the ADSL modem, then the switch to the router and then the computers to the switch. I purchased a gigabit ethernet switch, and I intend to connect 6 computers to it. One will be using Windows 98SE, one will be using Windows 2000 Pro., two will be using Windows XP Pro., one will be using Windows Vista Ultimate, and the last will be using Linux (not sure which distribution... still investigating). I currently have both the Windows book and the third edition of your Network book on hold, but as I have gathered almost all the hardware to construct the network, I want to get started now rather than wait another 10 days.

1. I have not yet purchased a router. I would prefer to buy a WIRED router, but the wired routers I see are Fast ethernet (i.e. 10/100 Mbps). I would think that the only slow-down to the network would occur anytime two or more computers were trying to get to the Internet, but communication between the computers would be much faster. Is this correct?

2. If I wanted to have everything running at the same optimal speed, I would have to purchase a gigabit router. However, the only ones that I have found with gigabit ethernet ports (usually 4 ports) are wireless-N routers, which are more expensive. As I said, my preference is for a completely wired network, but could I use one of these wireless routers and shut off the wireless function, or is this not possible?

3. Although my ADSL service "claims" maximum download speeds of up to 15 Mbps (for the particular plan we have), I hardly get close to that. The speed, in fact, can hover around 5 Mbps, which is tolerable (especially compared to dialup, which I occasionally use when my ISP has some technical problems with their hi-speed internet service or if problems develop with the ADSL modem (this has happened once)). Since even the maximum speed of 15Mbps is substantially less than the 100Mbps Fast ethernet speed, would it be better to use the Fast ethernet wired router instead of going for the wireless-N gigabit router?

4. I am also thinking of purchasing a print server for the network. Most are USB with a single port, but I have seen a relatively inexpensive 3-port ethernet print server. Currently there are 2 laser printers (monochrome), but I could see myself wanting to get a colour printer (distant future, either a colour inkjet or multifunction printer, or if the colour is not too bad, a colour laserjet printer). Is there anything I should be aware of before purchasing a print server for the network?

5. In terms of security, do I need to have antivirus software for each computer on the network? I have a Norton 360 standard package, which is good for 3 users. Does this mean it is "networkable" or do I have to physically install it to three of the six computers? I would, of course, have to purchase another package for the other three computers, but there are some problems... two of the computers are old and are incompatible with the recent version of Norton 360 (the 98SE - Pentium 75, Linux - Pentium 100). I also have a Pentium 233 MMX (Windows 2000 Pro.), which possibly is also not compatible with the current version of my antivirus software. I am using the last compatible free version of ClamWin on the 98SE, which is better than nothing, so perhaps I will have to use that on the other two computers. Is there a better way?... Do all routers have firewalls? Is it better to use the hardware-based firewall rather than a software-based firewall? Do any routers also have antivirus software incorporated in them?

6. Lastly, I really do not know anything about IPV6 (nor IPV4, for that matter), but as it is the new up-and-coming network addressing standard, should I implement it on my network? How... i.e. is this covered in your Network book?

Thanks in advance for your advice!

Paul


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Questions about Routers, Print Servers, and IPV6
 Post Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:45 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:44 am
Posts: 5901
Quote:
I would prefer to buy a WIRED router, but the wired routers I see are Fast ethernet (i.e. 10/100 Mbps)... my preference is for a completely wired network, but could I use one of these wireless routers and shut off the wireless function, or is this not possible?

A modern "wireless router" includes a wired router, a switch for wired connections, and a wireless access point for wireless connections. A comparable "wired router" includes the same router and switch as the wireless one, but leaves out the wireless access point. Because wireless routers are so much more popular than ones without wireless, it is actually less expensive to buy wireless routers even if you don't need the wireless functionality, especially since the wireless access point component can be turned off. Bottom line: you will want a "wireless router", and you will want one with a gigabit switch as well as a gigabit WAN port (connection to your modem). Considering cost and performance it no longer makes sense to purchase new 100Mbit hardware. I suppose you could enconomize by purchasing one with a wireless-G access point instead of wireless-N, however once you do start using wireless capability you will probably wish you had the wireless-N.

Quote:
I would think that the only slow-down to the network would occur anytime two or more computers were trying to get to the Internet, but communication between the computers would be much faster. Is this correct?

Your internet connection speed is limited by your ISP connection rate, which is shared among all simultaneous users. The more simultaneous users downloading or uploading, the slower it gets. On the other hand, with modern switches connections between systems is point to point and not actually shared. Of course accessing a single shared resource will slow down as more users are simultaneously accessing it.

Quote:
Is there anything I should be aware of before purchasing a print server for the network?

Stand-alone print servers work well with standard printers, but not so well with multifunction (i.e. scanner, copier) printers. Most of the time I recommend setting up one of the PCs as a print and file server, since that functionality is both useful and already built-in. If the PC in question has a modem you could also use it to send and receive faxes, even from other PCs on the network (using remote desktop connection). Many if not most new printers have built-in print server functionality (meaning a shared network connection).

Quote:
In terms of security, do I need to have antivirus software for each computer on the network?

In general for most users I don't recommend anti-malware software that runs in the background, as I have found that the "cure" is worse than the disease. I do install Malwarebytes Free on all of the systems I build and/or maintain, however that software runs only when you ask it to (it does not run in the background). For users who insist on trying to infect their systems at every opportunity, and who really need to have something constantly watching over them, I recommend Microsoft Security Essentials.

Quote:
Do all routers have firewalls?

Yes, routers provide NAT (Network Address Translation), which provides firewall functionality.

Quote:
Is it better to use the hardware-based firewall rather than a software-based firewall?

Yes, and a router is considered a hardware-based firewall.

Quote:
Do any routers also have antivirus software incorporated in them?

Yes, but they can be expensive and designed more for business than home use.

Quote:
I really do not know anything about IPV6 (nor IPV4, for that matter), but as it is the new up-and-coming network addressing standard, should I implement it on my network? How... i.e. is this covered in your Network book?

IPv6 is covered in URNetworks 5th edition. You will not need or want to implement it on your home network. Scott.


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
 
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 2 posts ] 

Board index » Upgrading and Repairing Forum » Network Hardware & Configuration


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

 
 

 
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron