Thank you, orinoco_cs

Bruce Janson bruce at
Wed Sep 25 14:29:10 EST 2002

    From: David Gibson <david at>
    Date: Wed, 25 Sep 2002 11:40:05 +1000
    On Tue, Sep 24, 2002 at 04:15:19PM -0700, Jim Carter wrote:
    > Wavelan is a registered trademark of NCR Corporation (I think), formerly
    > National Cash Register Corp., which was swallowed by AT&T (I think it was
    > before Lucent and ended up in the Lucent spinoff). This was their line of
    > very early wireless cards at 1 Mb/s using I think a proprietary protocol.
    As far as the cards themselves go - originally there was the Lucent
    WaveLAN IEEE cards.  These were later rebranded as ORiNOCO cards.  At
    some point the part of Lucent responsible for the firmware was spun
    off into Agere, but (afaik) they don't make cards themselves.
    Currently ORiNOCO branded cards and Avaya cards both exist, and are
    essentially identical.
    The IEEE is responsible for the 802.11 standards.

Jim, David,
    I think the WaveLAN IEEE cards were actually a slightly later version
of the "original" cards, perhaps the half-length cards as opposed to the
full-length cards.
The early WaveLAN ISA (and, if memory serves, PCMCIA and/or PCI) cards
signalled at 2 Mbits/s, and one could certainly achieve a reasonable
fraction of that rate: easily 1.6 Mbits/s using very low-powered PCs
and unoptimised code at both ends of a point-to-point link.  Though the
protocol was "proprietary" there was little of it.  The cards included
an Intel 82586 ethernet controller and just sent (slightly encapsulated)
ethernet packets over the air.  Of course, 802.11* has fixed that :-).


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