Need help with the right, ultimate modem/router combo setup

October 5, 2013 at 07:39:52
Specs: Windows 7
looking to have the perfect home network set up, wired and wi-fi. I am getting 50 mbps and want the ultimate modem/router combo. looking to plug a ps3 ps4, an alienware desktop, and an alienware laptop into this network. any suggestions

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#1
October 5, 2013 at 08:41:41
The specific modem and router (as long as they are the latest/ greatest out there) are not as important as the idea of the component that will act as a bottle neck for throughput. Even the fastest wireless connection will not handle the throughput of your cable modem and NIC wired router. With this in mind I would recommend that you run CAT 5e at least (6 is potentially faster but requires slightly different plugs) cabling to any PC or gaming console you really want the best performance at. What you gain in convenience of a wireless connection you compromise in performance, especially when multiple users are connecting at the same time. Also, keep in mind that the distance from your wireless router can make a HUGE difference in the speed of your connection. Once you have your hardware in place run a utility like www.speedtest.net in varying locations in your house/ apartment to see what you are really getting. WARNING! These speedtest sites have LOT'S of advertising that look like the speed test so wait until the site is loaded and click on the "Begin Test" link to avoid being redirected to some commercial site tryin to sell you something.

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#2
October 5, 2013 at 16:41:41
The previous post is a little hard to understand. What the responder is trying to say is, you get much better performance from a wired connection than you will from wireless.

So, if you're a gamer, you will want your gaming computer(s) and consoles connected with a network cable where possible. I know a wired connection on some consoles is not an option but on all your computers it should be so plug them in to the network, don't use them wirelessly.

If your computer network interface(s) are 1000 Mbps capable, both Cat5e and Cat6 are capable of that bandwidth and use the same type of ends (RJ45). I would recommend you just buy premade cables of the lengths you require.

With regard to what's the best router to buy, I would suggest that since you require wireless you'll want a dual band/dual radio unit that is capable of both 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz. All the newer wireless equipment is running at 5.0 GHz. Dual radios means all your legacy (2.4) will also be able to connect. Be sure to buy a unit that runs both concurrently (together). Some are only capable of running either one, or the other. You don't want that.

You will also want to ensure all LAN ports on your router are 1000 Mbps capable as well.

Which brand name isn't really relative as one is pretty much the same as the other. I recommend you spend some time, shop around and compare units. Read reviews! If 9 or 10 out of 10 reviews say it's a great unit, chances are it is. If 9 or 10 out of 10 say it's a POS, then chances are, it is. You can't go far wrong sticking with the bigger brand names like Linksys (Cisco), D-Link, etc.

Last but not least. Downloads and video streaming eat a lot of bandwidth. Doing either while gaming will affect your gaming performance even if you're on a wired connection to your router so you'll want to limit that during your gaming.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#3
October 5, 2013 at 19:57:44
While CAT 5 rj45 cable ends look alike and will work with CAT 6 cabling the standards for CAT 6 are much higher with a guaranteed signal to noise ratio much higher. http://www.broadbandutopia.com/caan...

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#4
October 6, 2013 at 05:13:55
Son, I work in an enterprise network and have for the last 8 to 9 years. I've been working in IT for most of 20 years and I've been doing networking for all of it, and pulling cable for the better part of 15 years of that.

I've made more patch cables than you ever will and can have one made, tested and ready for use in under 10 minutes. Also, I've pulled miles upon miles of it cable through walls. So yes, I'm well acquainted with the subtle difference between Cat6 and Cat5e cable ends.

But here's the thing, if a person is buying premade cables your point is completely moot. The chances of the OP pulling his/her own cable and doing the ends on them is ridiculously small. I'd wager, the chances of that are about the same as the chances that you'd pull, or make your own cables.

I do it all the time, but then I have the proper tools, cable and of course Cat6 and Cat5e RJ45's....both for stranded core and solid core. (that's 4 different types of RJ45 ends)

You do know you also need different RJ45 ends for stranded cable than you do for solid core?

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***

message edited by Curt R


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#5
October 6, 2013 at 10:51:03
Hi Curt. I'm glad you are gainfully employed. I pull all my own cables, at home and at work. I don't know who the OP is but his/ her original post made it sound like he/ she was doing his/ her home network from scratch. Pulling a cable through a ceiling or wall is tough if not impossible with ends installed. I was only trying to provide adequate info for he or she to do the job they described.

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#6
October 7, 2013 at 07:06:50
Well gee, thanks. I guess I'm glad you're gainfully employed too.

Having said that, I got nothing from the original post which indicated they wanted to pull cables through the ceiling or wall. Setup a LAN/WLAN certainly. But that doesn't entail pulling cables but rather in most cases, buying premade patch cables.

Sure guys like us with the proper tools, experience, and a good cable tester would pull our own cables through the walls whenever possible, but we know what we're doing. I'm sure you'd agree the average home user has never done this and doesn't really want to. Very few (if any) average home users have our level of knowledge or want to spend the time (albeit, not a lot for pulling/punching/testing cables) to learn it.

I'm surprised you pull cables at work and put RJ45 ends on them. If pulling through the ceiling/wall, my preference is to use RJ45 Keystones and faceplates. Then, you just plug your patch cable into said keystone outlet. I find it looks a lot neater and much more professional.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#7
October 7, 2013 at 12:10:52
We do do that in the design and office areas but many of our PCs are out on the floor and cables are suspended from the ceiling. That and the fact that at the server end switch we need the plugs. I work in an injection mold build and repair shop. I'm sorry if our exchange got a little testy there.

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#8
October 7, 2013 at 14:31:13
Well, maybe a little testy....but not rude and ignorant.........lol

In your server room, you're not using patch panels? I understand about the area where you have the machinery. Locating an outlet near that is not always possible, but I'd have figured you'd have all cables coming back to the same area and those would be punched into patch panels and from those you'd run patch cables to the switch/servers.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#9
October 8, 2013 at 07:14:30
We have a 24 port switch and a tower style server serving roughly 15 users and a couple networked printers. We have a 1 Tb data drive that is at about 50% capacity with a seperate 500GB drive for the Windows 2003 SBS system and I keep the shadow copy, virtual memory and index files for our 500 Gb external backup drives on it too. I asked them to let me setup a 1+0 RAID for speed and redundancy but they are cheap as hell and wouldn't spring for the extra grand. Funny how the prospect of a couple days productivity loss doesn't bother them as much as the grand up front. It is a bit messy near the server but again it's like pulling teeth when it comes to capital expenditures around here. Over all a decent place to work though.

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#10
October 8, 2013 at 07:59:40
I hear you about spending money.....that's true for most any place.

I suspect that if you ever have a failure on your server and have to recover (slowly) from it, they may 'see the light' and let you RAID your server. I do know from personal experience, you always want a RAID for critical data. The difference as you know being downtime (no RAID) as vs no downtime (RAID). In a world where downtime = lost income it is simple logic to RAID a critical server.

If you ever get a chance to squeeze enough $$$ out of them to upgrade, I would not recommend a RAID 10 for a server unless you were able to include a hotspare for each RAID 1. To be honest, I wouldn't recommend it regardless. If you have a good hardware RAID controller and room in your cabinet, I'd go RAID 1 for the operating system and RAID 5 for all data.

The R/W speeds of a RAID 0 aren't increased enough over any other RAID to make it really worthwhile in my estimation. If your users have to wait a couple milliseconds, so what.........LOL Better to have redundancy and ample storage than those unnoticeable (to the end user) gains you get from a RAID 0.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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