Setting Up A Wireless Network for a Home Office or Small Business
What you will need:
Wireless Router Installation
Dell's Wireless Router Installation Service includes the following:
Install and configure one Dell Wireless Router
Install Dell wireless cards and configure wireless PCs
Configure Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption or Wireless Protected Access (WPA) encryption and demonstrate how to change the key
Confirm shared Internet access on wireless PCs, provided a broadband Ethernet connection is available
Enable file and printer sharing between two PCs and demonstrate how to share between additional PCs
Provide a brief wireless hardware orientation
Setting Up an Access Point
If you choose to set it up yourself, there are a few things you can do when you're setting up your broadband router or access point that can help ensure the best performance for you wireless network.
Centre Your Router
- Place your Dell 2350 Wireless Broadband Router or access point near the centre of your network.
- Mount the router as high as possible in the room.
- If your network needs to cover two stories, you may need a separate router for each floor.
- Place your broadband router/access point away from computers, televisions, microwaves and cordless phones.
- Dell wireless products operate at 2.4 GHz, the same frequency as many small appliances.
Connecting Your Router
- Use a Cat-5 ethernet cable to connect your DSL or cable modem to the WAN port located on the back of your broadband router. (See Figure 3.)
- Your access point can also be connected to a Local Area Network with an Ethernet cable.
Installing a Network Card
To transmit data to a wireless network, your laptop or desktop computer will require a wireless PC network card.
PC network cards come in three formats:
- Internal - a card that is hardwired into your laptop. Also referred to as a Mini-PCI card.
- External - a separate PC network card that needs to be plugged into your laptop's PC card slot (commonly located on the side of a laptop. See figure 1.)
- USB Wireless Adapter - a separate device that can be plugged into the USB port of a desktop
If you ordered a PC card or mini-PCI with your new laptop, the necessary drivers and software should have been installed for you. If you're not sure, please consult your laptop user guide or consult the Dell.com Buying Guide.
If you have an older model, you may need to install the appropriate Client Manager utilities from the CD-ROM.
If the PC Card and drivers are properly installed, they should appear in the Network Adapters folder found in your laptop's Control Panel. If not, consult the Troubleshooting section of your PC Card user guide.
Configuring Your Computer
Once all your wireless network hardware is in place, you'll need to create a Configuration Profile or a unique identifier to access the network. This can be done through the Client Manager software installed on your laptop.
The TrueMobile 1170 Wireless Access Point can accommodate up to 50 users. TrueMobile 1170 Access Points can be linked together to expand the capacity of a wireless network. You do not need to purchase additional broadband routers to connect additional laptops or desktops to a wireless network. Each additional system will require its own PC network card. (Range, speed and number of users will vary according to environment and other factors.) The TrueMobile 1170 Access Point offers enhanced security options and roaming. Roaming is a term used to describe how a laptop switches from one Access Point to another when the user is moving around in an office environment. This means that no matter where the user is, the wireless connection will always be with the nearest access point for seamless connectivity.