Wireless on a slow computer

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Joined: Apr 22 2004
Posts: 379

Has anyone had success running a wireless network connection on a slow desktop or laptop?

The reason I am asking is that I have a rather slow laptop with a Pentium 166 mhz processor, 32MB RAM and Win98SE with no network capability at all and have purchased a wireless PC Card for it.

I just wanted to see if there were any issues I needed to look out for on a machine of this vintage before I install the card and drivers.

Thanks ahead of time!

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Jon's picture
Jon
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 2804
I've put a Lucent Gold card i

I've put a Lucent Gold card in a 486 laptop before. It works great, but the software is the killer. You're limited by the CPU processing power. I've had my 540c's hooked to my ethernet network, and they can pull the full 40+Kbps of the hardwire, and I'm pretty sure the 486 was capable of the same over the WiFi. You'll still be stuck with a laggy web experience on te Pentium though. I've had a Tecra 8000 (PII 300, 192-256MB RAM) on WiFi with Linux and it's a dog too. It's a tad faster under Win98, but then it's running software I don't trust much...

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Joined: Apr 26 2004
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same thing here, i was able t

same thing here, i was able to use my wavelan gold under win95, and it worked fine! slow, but fine

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Joined: Apr 22 2004
Posts: 379
So far, so good

I've installed the card on the Thinkpad.

Of course it works best if there's no security, which I did just long enough to download the updates to Windows 98.

I've got it back on WPA security, and so far it has found the connection, but flip-flops between 6 and 36mbps. I'll get to tinker around with it some more later.

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Joined: Sep 16 2004
Posts: 274
I've done almost the exact sa

I've done almost the exact same thing, a few years ago I put a netgear wireless card (got it free) into a (133 or 166) p1 dell laptop with 24 megs of ram and win98SE, it actually worked perfectly, just as well as a wired connection would work on the same machine.

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Joined: Mar 19 2005
Posts: 320
My PB5300 & WiFi

I've been using a RoamAbout card in my 5300 for the past month. It's running 7.6.1 and for browsing I use (...sigh...) IE 5. It is slow, to say the least, but it is still usable. For those of us who had to suffer through 300/1200/2400 baud modems, the sensation is similar and conjures up much deja vu. I am able to get to my Freeshell account plus doing email and terminal work. It's okay, and I admit a little fun when I'm out and surfing from a local WiFi hotspot.
Now if I can find a way to get my Tandy Model 102 to do the same... or one of my eMates (actually, that's doable).

Peace,
Rob

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Joined: Apr 22 2004
Posts: 379
So far-meh

I need for the wireless card to function where the network is encrypted, but so far that has proven to be fruitless. It doesn't work where the SSID is not broadcasted, like at my office.

I have my eye on a slightly faster Thinkpad this weekend (P200-P233), and if it works and I can get the encryption to work on it, I'll keep the card. Otherwise I'll have to return it and get a 10/100 ethernet card to keep my sanity.

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Joined: Apr 22 2004
Posts: 379
Gave up for now

I got a 10/100 PC Card for $16 and it works great.

The wireless card has been returned and used the money to fill my wife's gas tank to half-full. Sad

When I check the other laptop out I may get another one if I can be sure that it will work with encryption. Until then, I'll enjoy my wired laptop.

westieg3's picture
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Joined: Apr 4 2004
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i use an orinoco card in my w

i use an orinoco card in my wallstreet 250. speed isn't too bad, but transferring files over the network between it and my ibook takes awhile. i experience delay when loading my username on the ibook, and i'm sure that the old g3 processor in the wallstreet is part of the issue.

only one real issue with orinoco: it makes other computers on my networks drop their connections due to the built in security.

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Joined: Apr 22 2004
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My main issue

My main problem was that if security was enabled on my router in any form, it would not link to it with any degree of reliability. Without security it was OK, but I don't want to leave my wireless access wide open.

Until I get a faster laptop to tinker with, I'll leave this one wired for now. Besides, I have a work laptop with built-in wireless if I need it until then. I just don't want to mess the newer one up since it's set up for development.

visorboy333's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 35
i use a WaveLan silver card o

i use a WaveLan silver card out of a graphite base station on a Toshiba 465CDX laptop. Uses the Orinoco drivers designed for the "shark fin" USB wireless cards. Actually works quite well. Even with security enabled.

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