further information on previous 802.11 thread?

clug at repose.cx clug at repose.cx
Thu Apr 25 03:42:27 EST 2002

Hey folks,

I'm starting to think about playing with wireless. It's still a bit more
expensive than I'd like, but I don't think the other members of the household
appreciate the Cat-5 which is currently running into our living room. :-)

I was just wondering if anyone was willing to field some 802.11 / linux

1. I'd like to use two cards, and avoid the base station, as I really don't
   want to incure the extra expense. I seem to recall that doing this is when
   the cards are placed in "ad-hoc" mode, but there's this small piece of
   information floating around in my head that says that you require
   new/particular cards to do this nicely without a base station. Am I
   imagining things? Can base-station-less operation be done fine with no
   consideration as to the type of card? I just remember reading somewhere
   about a "better" way to do it, or something. Maybe it was making one of the
   cards act like an access point?

2. I'm wondering what justifies the disparity in pricing between, say, the
   d-link/netgear cards, and that of orinco, IBM, etc. Is it just the level of
   WEP encryption (which i'm not interested in, as I'll be using ipsec), or is
   there more to it than that? Are the "silver" and "gold" cards just different
   WEP encryption levels?

3. The gateway I've got set up for our house is in our storeroom. This would be
   the computer I'd be most interested in connecting one of the access cards to
   (by way of a pci<->pcmcia convertor), as it's the only computer that never
   gets turned off for any reason. Our storeroom is made of concrete and brick,
   however. Would this likely impact on the performance of the wireless link?
   I'm only interested in setting up a wireless network through the house, so
   it's likely the other card will be close by - at most 2-3 rooms away. 

4. If the concrete is going to greatly affect things, what options are there?
   Running an aerial out of that room would probably be cumbersome. I guess the
   only alternative would be to have the link connected to another computer,
   but I'm not eager to sleep close to something operating at such frequencies
   (call me paranoid :-)

I guess what I'm interested in is if the wireless market is a bit like the
ethernet market, where a standard 8139 card will do the job fairly well, but
spending more money on a better card will see you hit closer to the 100Mbit

Any input on any of these would be appreciated :-)

- Wireless naive,

Damien Elmes

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