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Airport 2! Why isn't it faster?

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
Apple have updated airport hardware and software to version 2. But its still at 11 mbps!
<a href="http://www.apple.com/airport/" target="_blank">Apple Airport 2</a> <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
post #2 of 30
What's wrong with 11 mbps again? Slower speeds on LANs, but that's about it.

11 mbps doesn't effect your internet connection at all. So what's the benefit?
post #3 of 30
Seriously, though.

If you have Aiport, you most likely have a laptop. If you're trying to connect to a desktop machine to copy large files, then why not just use Firewire for the transferring? Much faster and easier.
post #4 of 30
Hey I'm just happy they've upgraded it. I think a price drop is deserved, as well. It can't possibly cost them 300 bucks to manufacture that thing, probably not even 150-200. If it were less expensive I would be there would be more AirPort networks. Also I can't wait until Apple starts shipping AirPort standard on more of their computers, like the top-of-the-line PowerBook does! It's gonna be a weird, wireless world..
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post #5 of 30
11mbs shoudl be fine for what most people are doing. I have a 10/100 network at my house and I honestly don't NEED that much speed most of the time. Unless you are doing alot of file transferring than 11mbs should be just fine.

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post #6 of 30
This isn't really version 2 anyway, more like 1.5. Version 2, as in a new protocol, will be based on 802.11a and operate in the 5Ghz neighborhood, instead of 2.4Ghz. 802.11a is just now hitting the market, and offers speeds of 54Mbps.

I expect Apple to rollout 802.11a devices in 2002.
post #7 of 30
I use AirPort 100% of the time at work/school with my iBook and really don't notice a difference in speed between AirPort and direct ethernet.

They really should have called this AirPort 1.5 though, and had the 802.11a version be AirPort 2.

[ 11-13-2001: Message edited by: MacAgent ]</p>
post #8 of 30
I don't know why it isn't faster. But it is Current Hardware.
post #9 of 30
Hey, this is a great update. The fact that they added a firewall is fantastic esp if you are on OSX and DSL. that is a big cost saving and a great saftey feature. if you have been hacked into, you know what i mean. also the 128 bit encryption is fantastic as well.

as far as speed, i agree with people above unless you are doing lots of DV file transfer to another DV Storgage server on a network, 11mbs is great and from a laptop.

apple continues to inovate while others imitate. hey, that could be a tagline!
innovate, don't imitate.
post #10 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by haunebu:
<strong>This isn't really version 2 anyway, more like 1.5.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yes, it's definetely not version 2. Why? Because Steve Jobs announced the 50 user AirPort base station two-years ago (or maybe it was last year). Anyways, you can check for yourself by watching either last year's or the year before's Seybold keynote. Steve mentioned that they're coming out with a 50-user base station. I remember bugging an Apple Rep about that during an Apple Seminar.
post #11 of 30
Does it say version 2.0? Then its version 2.0.

Yikes.

Can't wait until people start saying: "It's not the G5, it's the G4e++".

Whatever.
post #12 of 30
Do you people realize how these protocols work?

802.11b works on the 2.4GHz band, and most of the work is probably done to some degree in the hardware. In any event, it is a standard which only supports 11Mbps. If Apple could speed it up with a software update (which they can't) it would be incompatable with all the other 802.11b equipment out there, like Cisco, Lucent, etc. While we're at it, it's probably worth noting that Airport is simply rebadged Lucent hardware.

I'd agree Airport 2.0 is a misnomer, but none of the improvements you seem to be expecting are possible in the current system.

BTW, AFAIK given the theoretical flaws in WEP 129bit encryption is no better than 40bit, except in buzzword compliance.

Also, given the limits of 802.11a as far as range goes, its complete inoperability with the current 802.11b infrastructure, and so forth, I'd be happy for Apple to stay with the 2.4Ghz products for the time being.
post #13 of 30
I don't know if anyone noticed this but the Apple site has some disheartening info:

(1) Wireless Internet access requires AirPort Card, AirPort Base Station, and Internet access (fees may apply). Some ISPs are not currently compatible with AirPort. Range may vary with site conditions.

(2) Compatible with AOL 5.0, U.S. only. Simultaneous sharing of an AOL connection requires multiple AOL accounts.

I thought the whole point of having a hub/router (wireless or otherwise) in most home set-ups was to let your home PC's share one internet connection. Has Apple somehow scuttled this in their airport software. Also, how would an ISP be incompatible with airport???

I know nothing at all about this, but exactly what hardware does one need in order for all his home computers to share one simultaneous connection??? I ain't paying for two broadband connections.
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post #14 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by Matsu:
<strong>(2) Compatible with AOL 5.0, U.S. only. Simultaneous sharing of an AOL connection requires multiple AOL accounts.

I thought the whole point of having a hub/router (wireless or otherwise) in most home set-ups was to let your home PC's share one internet connection. Has Apple somehow scuttled this in their airport software. Also, how would an ISP be incompatible with airport???

I know nothing at all about this, but exactly what hardware does one need in order for all his home computers to share one simultaneous connection??? I ain't paying for two broadband connections.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I'm guessing AOL demanded this in order to let Apple implement this feature into Airport2.
post #15 of 30
1) I can't say anything about the AOL situation because I don't know.

2) As for the some ISPs disclaimer, it's probably so that Apple won't be held responsible if it doesn't work.

To share your broadband connection, you needs a Cable/DSL router, or Airport Base Station. (Same thing)

Plug Router into Cable modem. Plug computers either into the router or a hub/switch. (Depending on how many ports you have on the router).

Set computers for DHCP. Follow any other instructions the Router comes with.
post #16 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by Matsu:
<strong>I don't know if anyone noticed this but the Apple site has some disheartening info:

(1) Wireless Internet access requires AirPort Card, AirPort Base Station, and Internet access (fees may apply). Some ISPs are not currently compatible with AirPort. Range may vary with site conditions.
</strong><hr></blockquote>
This has always been the case with AirPort, and also applies to people using routers and the like. Some ISPs just don't like them.
[quote](2) Compatible with AOL 5.0, U.S. only. Simultaneous sharing of an AOL connection requires multiple AOL accounts.<hr></blockquote>
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe AOL has always blocked one account from being accessed simultaneously from two computers, presumably to stop several people in different locations using just one account to save money.
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post #17 of 30
ohh... thanks Belle, I haven't used AOL in so long I'd forgotten that.

Does this mean Apple has blocked the routing functions? Or just that you can't use an account from more than one computer at a time.
post #18 of 30
So what does someone need if they are to use 1 connection (from any provider) simultaneously amongst two or more computers?
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post #19 of 30
I think only AOL has this problem.
post #20 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by Matsu:
<strong>So what does someone need if they are to use 1 connection (from any provider) simultaneously amongst two or more computers?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Easiest way is to get a router. I use an Asante Friendly Net which combines a router and a four port switch.

You program into your router all the information about the ISP (password, login name, etc.) then the router logs into the ISP as if it were you. Then all the computers attached to the router send messages to the router which get forwarded to the appropriate web sites, etc. via your ISP. The router attaches a small identifier to the messages so that when the replies come from the outside the router knows which computer to direct them to.

There is an added benefit in that the router acts as a firewall increasing your security. Plugging your computers into the switch part of the router lets the computers see each other as well. You can turn off all of the computers but the router will stay connected to the ISP. Very convenient.
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post #21 of 30
I like the fact they have given the built in fire wall protection, but I don't understand how the 128bit encryption isn't included for the older Airport base station. If the encryption can be updated for the card why not the base? Just another reason to make us run out to buy a new Airport?
post #22 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by KD5MDK:
<strong>ohh... thanks Belle, I haven't used AOL in so long I'd forgotten that.

Does this mean Apple has blocked the routing functions? Or just that you can't use an account from more than one computer at a time.</strong><hr></blockquote>
I'm not sure whether Apple has blocked anything? I think it's just that AOL won't allow two simultaneous connections using the same account name.
[quote]So what does someone need if they are to use 1 connection (from any provider) simultaneously amongst two or more computers?<hr></blockquote>
The AirPort Base Station or a router. Just check with your ISP and make sure they allow multiple computers to connect from one location. Most ISPs include this information in their FAQs. If you use AOL, find a new ISP.
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post #23 of 30
My question was: If you use the Airport Base Station to connect to AOL, does that mean it is:

1) Bridgeing, so that the actual AOL client software is on your computer

2) Routing, where the Base Station logs on and shares the connection with all its clients. You can't use AOL for anything more than the connection, but everybody on your end would have TCP/IP connections to the 'Net.

It sounds like the first model, but I'd really rather they offer the second one, even though it doesn't affect me.
post #24 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by KD5MDK:
<strong>My question was: If you use the Airport Base Station to connect to AOL, does that mean it is:

1) Bridgeing, so that the actual AOL client software is on your computer

2) Routing, where the Base Station logs on and shares the connection with all its clients. You can't use AOL for anything more than the connection, but everybody on your end would have TCP/IP connections to the 'Net.

It sounds like the first model, but I'd really rather they offer the second one, even though it doesn't affect me.</strong><hr></blockquote>

My thoughts exactly. I bet the AOL support allows AOL to connect directly using the AirPort's modem. Obviously it already connects via TCP/IP over airport. Then again, I wouldn't really know as I don't use AOL...
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post #25 of 30
haunebu, I doubt the next AirPort will use an incarnation of 802.11a. Most of the current cards and partial wavelength antennas only get 50 feet or so in good conditions. Apple wants to move forward, not backward.
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post #26 of 30
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I agree. The killer for the deal as I see it is the lack of backwards compatability. Apple has invested so much in Airport right now that to move to a new architecture would be foolish and an attack on everyone who bought 802.11b.

I think 802.11g is planned to be more secure and faster, while retaining compatability with b.
post #27 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by Matsu:
<strong>So what does someone need if they are to use 1 connection (from any provider) simultaneously amongst two or more computers?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Assuming 10.1.1 and two Mac computers you will need:

1. Airport cards in each
2. Cable modem, DSL, or dialup modem
3. Configure NAT -- see <a href="http://homepage.mac.com/gdif" target="_blank">http://homepage.mac.com/gdif</a> and d/l a file Utilities/NATd
4. Setup the machine the Cable modem (for example) is connected to as an AirPort Software Base station -- you don't need to buy Apple's hardware AirPort base station. Instructions for doing this are at <a href="http://homepage.mac.com/masqfirewall.html" target="_blank">http://homepage.mac.com/masqfirewall.html</a>
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post #28 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by Matsu:
<strong>I don't know if anyone noticed this but the Apple site has some disheartening info:

(1) Wireless Internet access requires AirPort Card, AirPort Base Station, and Internet access (fees may apply). Some ISPs are not currently compatible with AirPort. Range may vary with site conditions.

(2) Compatible with AOL 5.0, U.S. only. Simultaneous sharing of an AOL connection requires multiple AOL accounts.

I thought the whole point of having a hub/router (wireless or otherwise) in most home set-ups was to let your home PC's share one internet connection. Has Apple somehow scuttled this in their airport software. Also, how would an ISP be incompatible with airport???

I know nothing at all about this, but exactly what hardware does one need in order for all his home computers to share one simultaneous connection??? I ain't paying for two broadband connections.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Here's the deal. AOL (and possibly other ISPs) do not use the Mac OS's built in Internet Connection utilities. They roll their own and dial not using the system, but from their own software.

You can share your internet connection using Apple's hardware if you use one of the "normal" ISPs (i.e., they connect using standard protocols). However AOL et al. do not let you share because (i'm guessing) Apple had to implement a custom AirPort interface for those ISPs.

HTH
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post #29 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by KD5MDK:

<strong>
I agree. The killer for the deal as I see it is the lack of backwards compatability. Apple has invested so much in Airport right now that to move to a new architecture would be foolish and an attack on everyone who bought 802.11b.
</strong>
<hr></blockquote>

802.11b doesn't fry your brain as much either...

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post #30 of 30
[quote]Originally posted by KD5MDK:
<strong>I think 802.11g is planned to be more secure and faster, while retaining compatability with b.</strong><hr></blockquote><a href="http://www.reuters.com/news_article.jhtml?type=technologynews&StoryID=382 231" target="_blank">They've just approved the 802.11g standard.</a>

Backwards compatible with b (same range), and 54 megabits/sec. vs. 11.

The article says devices will be available by the end of next year.
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