While down here at Adobe MAX, we wanted to get some work done after dinner. We realized that we hadn’t brought ethernet cables, and chose to run to Fry’s in Las Vegas … we also had a Fry’s virgin with us, and it’s always fun to introduce a geek to the Fry’s experience.
While wandering through the wireless section at Fry’s, I chose to look for a new portable wireless access point that I could take on trips with me. I used to carry a Lucent RG-1000 with me everywhere that I went. It was an amazing box for the time … it provided Ethernet and Dial-up capabilities, and was a router with DHCP and NAT built in. I could go into any place with a phone line, and create a shared wireless network … uh … sharing a 56kbps dial-up link. Not the best speeds, but it worked.
Well, I have now found my modern replacement … and it’s very cool. I’m impressed. The Linksys WTR54GS is now going to be travelling with me. This compact little unit appears to have two wireless radios, and two ethernet ports. It is able to be a complete wireless router, with either wired or wireless connection to the Internet, and then both a ethernet and/or wireless access point functionality for clients. Amazing. So, for example, I had it connect as a wireless client bridge to the hotel wireless network, and then was able to connect to it’s wireless access point and have multiple machines share that single connection. So it was an active wireless client, and wireless access point at the same time … complete with NAT, firewall, and even MAC Address cloning.
All of this in a compact little unit, with a retractable power connector, that fits into a small zippered carrying case. And the price? Fry’s had it for $79 …. I’m sure that you might find it cheaper elsewhere. I’m sure that I’ll blog more about it if it continues to live up to the experience that I’ve had this week.