I have the following setup at a home and could use some insight, see the bottom for 'the bottom line':
D-Link DI-642 wireless router
Belin N1 USB Adapter hooked to a DELL desktop
Apple PowerBook with the Extreme Airport a/b/g /bluetooth
Wireless network is WPA protected with a 25+ character key
Internet line in is a Verizon FIOS (fiber) 5mb down 2 up.
Here is the problem. The Desktop with the Belkin N1 adapter CONSTANTLY disconnects. About 30 times a day the network key needs re-entered. This wireless connection is being controlled by Windows and not the Belkin utility. The Belkin utility apparently can not support the WPA-PSK. At times, if I try to view the wireless networks, it searches and finds nothing. Sometimes unplugging the adapter from its base stand allows it to connect again, sometimes not. Rarely, but still too often, (5 times in past week) the machine can't reconnect no matter what I do. It needs rebooted. *gag* Unplugging the adapter does nothing, no networks can be seen. etc.
Performed all updates on the Belkin device.
The Apple has disconnected -once-. After a firmware upgrade. Since then it's been fine. It has a constant 54 mbps connection and acts like it.
I'm not sure if this is related to the Belkin adapter, or an OS related issue. No obvious errors in any event logs. OS is up to date on all patches and the MS Fix for WPA has obviously been applied.
Has anyone else had any experience with these PreN devices in a SOHO environment? If so, how did they perform?
I suppose I'll have to install some wireless utilities on the Apple, so I can see what happens when the PC disconnects from the network. Any suggestions on MAC software that won't break the bank for troubleshooting this issue?
1- PreN: It is not ratified yet, so to interconnect equipments, you should use same brand.
2- The intermittent interconnection could be caused due a Hidden Node issue, in case that adapter is too far behind from the others. If you can try to increase the power level in all clients or to bring the adapter closer to the ap.
that's what i have been reading...
IMO, BatJedi is correct. Pre-N devices will only work correctly with other Pre-N hardware. I tested that Belkin device and I had the same issues. I told the manufacturer the results and it still is having issues.
As an aside this link is to a pretty decent packet sniffer and its free. You can always load WireShark but you have to deal with a third party application like Fink.