Please help needed. totally confused!

  chuckles2000 09:14 09 Mar 2005

Can anyone help please? I have an athlon 2600 pc that I want to wireless network to a Thinkpad T22 laptop. At the moment I am using AOL (which I want to keep), a Bt Voyager usb adsl modem connecting the broadband. I have the family PCI ethernet NIC listed in network on my pc. I have a bt voyager 1010 usb adapter for my laptop ...nothing for the pc? I know I need a wireless router..can anyone reccommend a cheap but useful router for AOL - cant afford their prices!The I need to know how I can do this and what else I will need. I am going round in circles reading up about it. I'd be grateful for advise asap. thanks

  FelixTCat 11:45 09 Mar 2005

You have a choice of ways of doing this.

1 Buy an adsl wireless modem and ethernet cable (about £60) and connect both pcs through this

2 Buy a PCI or USB wireless adapter (about £20) for your pc and connect to the laptop wirelessly

Option 1 allows the two pcs to operate independently but is more expensive; option 2 requires your pc to be on all the time to let the laptop connect to the internet.

In some respects option 1 is easier to set up, easier to maintain and more secure. You can retain your bt voyager 1010 for either option, though if file transfers are a major consideration you may want to buy a faster one (another £20).

Set-up of either option is relatively straight-forward, but rather than go through both now, it would be useful to get an idea of which route you would like to follow.

  chuckles2000 12:16 09 Mar 2005

would option 1 mean I dont need a wireless router?
I thought all wireless networks ahd to have one?

  FelixTCat 12:25 09 Mar 2005

Sorry, chuckles, you're quite right. I should have written "adsl modem wireless router"

  chuckles2000 12:38 09 Mar 2005

Does that mean I need both a wireless modem and a router? Can you get a combined one like the BT Voyager?Would I still need some kind of adapter for my pc? It has the Realtek ethernet pci family NIC listed in my network...does that suffice or do i have to but soemthing extra?

  TonyM 13:13 09 Mar 2005

You don't need a router at all if you go for the second option the FelixTCat identified. You would need a wireless network card (PCI) to put in your PC and a wireless card (usually called a wireless adapter or pcmcia card) for you laptop. You then configure both these in "ad-hoc" mode which means they will talk to each other without a router being present , configure your PC to share it's internet connection and away you go.

I managed to buy both these bits of kit on ebay in the last few weeks for £12.50 (for both !).

The only problem with a set-up like this is that PC has to be running for the laptop to access the internet connection (as FelixTCat said).

Hope that helps ...

  chuckles2000 13:24 09 Mar 2005

Thnaks for that. If I buy a wirelss pci for the pc (will any do) and a wirless pcmcia card for the laptop would you tell me more about how to configure once its set up please? Isnt this more dangerous security wise? How is my signal going downstairs?? My pc is upstairs .

  FelixTCat 13:40 09 Mar 2005


You already have a wireless card for the laptop - you don't need another.

Yes, any pci card will do for the pc, or even a USB adapter if you have USB2 ports. In the early days it was more difficult, but the wireless standard is now well established and it is rare to find equipment that does not interwork.

In essence, you install the adapters and their software. You then run the network wizard on the pc that has the broadband connection and, in the options, say that you want another computer to connect to the internet through this one.

You then follow the instructions, which set up the two pcs.

This will automatically give internet access to the laptop through your desktop, provided the desktop is running and you have logged on to AOL.

You are strongly advised to have a firewall, anti-virus protection and ad-ware protection on both pcs.

Whilst it is less secure than having a router, if set up properly and the protection is maintained, you are unlikely to have any problems.

The signal goes downstairs wirelessly (i.e. like a radio signal). I usually sit in my downstairs lounge using my laptop wirelessly connected to a spare bedroom upstairs on the other side of the house.

  chuckles2000 13:45 09 Mar 2005

Sorry to be a pain but when you say i have one for the laptop are you referring to the voyager USB adapter? So then I am just looking for a pci adapter for the pc? Any will do? Theres loads on ebay for under £12.
Then all this will work still leaving my adsl modem alone and as long as I am online on aol upstairs I can use my laptop downstairs to be online?

Why did I think a router was a absolute neccessity for any wirelss set up?

  FelixTCat 14:00 09 Mar 2005

You are correct.

You probably can get an adapter from eBay, but be sure that you get one to the 802.11g specification - the cheaper ones may be to the 802.11b specification, which are slower. Since you can get a brand new 802.11g adapter for £20 with full manufacturer's guarantee or a brand new 802.11b adapter for £15 likewise, you may be better off getting new.

Routers aren't absolutely necessary - but they are in many ways better.

  chuckles2000 14:07 09 Mar 2005

So...wish you hadnt put the last bit lol! if I was to get a wrireless router to run aol which would be a good cheap one to get that is not known to have issues with aol please? and could you remind me then if I took this route what else I would need...any cable involved ? ??

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