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Old 08-09-2009, 02:36 AM   #1
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USB Wireless Aircard Router

I thought I'd share this with those of you who use the USB wireless aircards.

I've used one for quite awhile now and though they have their shortcomings when out of cell range, they are reliable and easy to install and use.

If you are like me, some of you have the need to use more than one computer at a time and using a USB aircard normally limits that to one computer connected at a time.

(There is another way but without major techie skills most of you shouldn't attempt it.)

Here's a modestly priced wireless router that you plug your aircard into and provide your own hotspot, allowing you to use more than one computer on the same connection easily.




http://www.netgear.com/Products/RoutersandGateways/3GMobileBroadband/MBR624GU.aspx?detail=System+Requirements


It has 4 network ports for wired connection and you can connect as many laptops through the wireless connection as needed.

I don't have any affiliation with Netgear whatsoever.

(The above statement was translated into non-techie terms to the best of my abilities.)
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Old 08-09-2009, 08:13 AM   #2
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neat idea. It would protect the card from damage too.
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Old 08-09-2009, 08:21 AM   #3
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I have a USB card we use all the time while traveling and I have considered a router to run the multiple computers, iphones, ect... I wonder if your router is strong enough to send the signal outdoors (like if your working at the picnic table). I have purchased a rather long USB cable that allows me to move the card away from where I am working to get a better signal- these tin cans really cause havic with wireless signals. I would love to put some type of booster on the trailer itself for all cell signals- anyone know of something like that?
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Old 08-09-2009, 08:40 AM   #4
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Great info, thank you.

Do you happen to know if this router will operate with a cell phone vs. an air card? I have the Verizon service where my cell phone tethers to my lap top to access the internet.

Brian
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Old 08-09-2009, 08:49 AM   #5
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"I would love to put some type of booster on the trailer itself for all cell signals- anyone know of something like that?"

Do you mean to boost your signal reception of cell signals for your air card and cell phone? If so, I use one of these:

Cell Phone Antennas and Cell Phone Boosters at Wilson Electronics

I've had great success with the direct connect type, but I hear the wireless works as well. If you go with the direct connect type, you will need the type of aircard that has a jack for an external antenna. I ran an external cable through the front window frame, and clamp it to the tinted shield. When not in use, it stores nicely between the window and screen. If you're going to be at the WDCU Installation Rally in October I'd be glad to show how mine works.

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Old 08-09-2009, 03:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3streams View Post
I have a USB card we use all the time while traveling and I have considered a router to run the multiple computers, iphones, ect... I wonder if your router is strong enough to send the signal outdoors (like if your working at the picnic table). I have purchased a rather long USB cable that allows me to move the card away from where I am working to get a better signal- these tin cans really cause havoc with wireless signals. I would love to put some type of booster on the trailer itself for all cell signals- anyone know of something like that?
I've had no problems with the Netgear in the 300 ft. range (laptop-to-router) which is about as far as I've used it myself, though I have a fiberglass skin rather than aluminum. I believe Linksys (owned by Cisco) makes a similar model to the Netgear also. There are many of them on the market but I listed the Netgear because it is the most reasonably priced with what I consider reliable technology. I have worked with network equipment since the 80's and have learned to shy away from off brands and stick with the makes and models that have withstood the test of time. (kinda like me!)

There are a number of solutions to all of your questions concerning the aircards, (usb modems, data capable cell phones, amplifiers, boosters, antennas, etc.) Aircards and data capable cell phones use what is known as EVDO technology;

Evolution Data Only/Evolution Data Optimized, a 3G mobile broadband technology used by Verizon, Sprint, and Alltel that provides typical speeds of 600-1400kbps download (with bursts up to 2000kbps) and 500-800kbps upload.

Those of you looking for specific solutions can either google "EVDO" or visit here: EVDOInfo.com For more information. This site also has a wide variety of amplifiers, antennas, routers with built-in EVDO, USB Modems and more. Hope this helps.

tbro
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Old 08-09-2009, 03:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverRanger View Post
If you're going to be at the WDCU Installation Rally in October I'd be glad to show how mine works.
GW
We will be there! Thanks for the info.
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Old 11-05-2009, 02:30 PM   #8
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Router question

I have a Mac laptop and was connected to the Internet via my phone line and a wireless router, which enabled me to print with a wireless connection to my two printers. I disconnected my home telephone and bought an aircard. Now, I can only connect to my printers by USB.

I have a Linksys router and have been told I can't print wirelessly.

Do these new routers allow me to connect my aircard to the router and then link up my laptop and printers and other wireless peripheral devices?

Do I need any other special equipment to enable me to do so?

Thanks,

Tony
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Old 11-05-2009, 03:48 PM   #9
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i'm thinking of getting this.

video CradlePoint CTR500 Router with Verizon USB727 KPC680 - cradlepoint, ctr500, kpc680 - videos kewego
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Old 11-05-2009, 04:50 PM   #10
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If you only need to connect a second computer, the internet on the computer with the wireless card can be shared on windows. Then one computer will allow a second computer to connect via a wired connection using a cat5 crossover cable between the two. I have used this method for several years and it is a cheap way to connect two computers to the internet. You also do not need to worry about someone else tapping into your wireless connection.

Dennis
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:08 PM   #11
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Cradlepoint

Richinny-

I was thinking along the same lines as you were. I was intrigued by the MiFi, but didn't like the idea that it couldn't handle an external antenna like the CradlePoint routers.

We had a meeting last week where a salesperson dropped a MiFi on the desk and 3 laptops were able to connect to it. Really cool, but they said it wasn't great in low signal areas.

I'm leaning towards a slightly different version of your suggested router, the CradlePoint PHS300, since it will run on batteries. It will be a little larger than the MiFi, but can easily sit on a picnic table or can run in a TV. In low signal areas, the USB modem can handle an external antenna and hopefully fit our all our connectivity needs.

BTW, the concern about others accessing a router is easy to fix with WEP and/or mac-address security. Not hard to set up if you take the time with the manual and have some patience.
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:58 PM   #12
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i'd be curious as to how long the battery power will last. something that runs on 12v would be nice!
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Old 11-08-2009, 11:17 PM   #13
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USB Wireless Router

The newest solution to most of your mobile life wireless internet issues has been solved by the addition of a relatively new device. Verizon calls it the MiFi 2200 and it is about the size of a credit card and about a 1/2 inch thick.

This little device can convert your aluminum home into a WiFi hot spot. It will wirelessly manage up to 5 WiFi enabled devices (phones, computers, etc) and is very simple to use. I have both the older plug in USB and this newer device. I use multiple computers and my IPhone likes a net connection when it can get it. I simply put this device in a window and can choose the window that works the best and get a 50 foot hot spot. This device has a built in Lithium-ion battery and can run for up to 4 hours on a charge or you can plug it in to shore power or an inverter. There is a monthly charge and a limit on use (I never seem to go over). This only works where you can get cell service.

Several company's have this type of product, including Sprint.

see: Verizon Wireless - Mobile Broadband - Products

I got mine at Costco in a sales tax free state (another advantage of the mobile life).
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Old 11-08-2009, 11:33 PM   #14
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We got one of the Netgear wifi routers that uses our air card nearly a year ago. It works just fine. We use it in our trailers to allow both laptops to access the internet. One thing we really like about it is that it is 12v powered, uses 1 amp. Great for dry camping.
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Old 01-18-2010, 10:57 PM   #15
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The Cradlepoint CTR500 is an excellent cellular router. It comes with a cigarette lighter plug as well as AC for power. It's much easier to configure than the Netgear. It allows you to connect your cell phone to it in tether mode. It also supports connecting multiple cellular modems to it and will load balance between them.

I carry an external battery with me to power my ipod for extended periods. I've used it to power the CTR500 and use it as a pocket wifi hotspot.

-Doug
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Old 04-07-2010, 08:04 PM   #16
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We bought the Verizon MiFi 2200 today for extensive trips in late April - June. Sprint sells a version of (Novatel) MiFi 2200 too. PC Magazine likes the Sprint version a little better but I'm not sure of their coverage where we will be going. The only con with either is battery life with multiple WiFi users.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:06 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Foster View Post
We got one of the Netgear wifi routers that uses our air card nearly a year ago. It works just fine. We use it in our trailers to allow both laptops to access the internet. One thing we really like about it is that it is 12v powered, uses 1 amp. Great for dry camping.
Just got two new laptops and an Epson NX515 printer with built in WIFI. They all three link together just fine with our Netgear WIFI router that uses our AT&T air card.
We can print from either laptop.

Look Ma, no wires!

Fun stuff.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:21 PM   #18
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I've used a Cradlepoint MBR1000 router with my Verizon aircard for several years. It will work with PCI express and USB. It will work with some cell phones.

I like the concept. One of the best features is I can locate the router/aircard for the best signal in fringe areas. Sometimes I'll place it in the window, other times outside-even on the roof if necessary (weather permitting). I like the ability to use multiple computers without having to install the aircard software.

I've had the aircard/router in the trailer and used the computer outside at the table or campfire.

There's more choice now, such as the offerings listed above which serve as both the aircard and router. But I do suspect the dedicated router has more range and features.

I've run the aircard and router on inverter.. Using a Kill-A-Watt shows it draws 4-5 watts.
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Old 04-14-2010, 09:25 PM   #19
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We bought the Verizon MiFi 2200 today for extensive trips in late April - June. Sprint sells a version of (Novatel) MiFi 2200 too. PC Magazine likes the Sprint version a little better but I'm not sure of their coverage where we will be going. The only con with either is battery life with multiple WiFi users.
-Ken
We also got the Verizon version of this dongle/doohickey. So far it's been great (we usually only use it when we're hooked up to power).

The only bummer is that we paid a lot of money for it before we found out that every other vendor than the one we bought from (a Verizon store no less) is giving them away with a subscription contract.
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Old 04-18-2010, 09:20 PM   #20
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We got the Verizon Mi Fi and installed a wi fi in motion system so that the Mi fi can use its antenna and amplifier in areas with poor reception. The mi if has worked great so far, this coming weekend we'll check out how well the combination works on our first trip. Has anyone else hooked up the mi fi to the wifi in motion system? Would appreciate hearing any of your experiences and suggestions. Thanks.
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