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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
To be honest, I've never been much of a network guy. Aside from the basics, I've never tinkered too much with my network. So after building my unRAID server and having to sit through transfer rates of 2.5Mb/s, I thought it would be a reasonable investment to upgrade my home network. Basically, we've been using this Netgear WRN2000 for 2-3 years now. The server is attached to a Hawking HWREN1 Range Extender which was laying around the house. Since there is no ethernet port in my room, I had to go wireless. Every other computer aside from the desktop attached to the Netgear connects to our Wi-Fi. Since practically every device will be accessing the server, what should I look into to increase the transfer speed of my network? I was considering getting a gigabit router, but I'm not even sure what to look for. Ideally it would be under $100. I'm also interested in DDWRT or Tomato. Also, if I do go the gigabit route, what would I replace with the HWREN1 in order to achieve gigabit speeds or any other computer for that matter? Thanks.
 

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Well it really depends on how far the Wireless Signal is.

One thing i'd personally look into is Powerline Networking as it provides more consistent results, and doesn't degrade periodically as Wireless does.

Check if your WNR2000 version you maybe able to run DD-WRT or Tomato on it (especially the V2).

For myself on a Laptop when i'm at home I usually get up to 50 megabits peak speeds, but down to 7-20 megabits depending.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The server is literally 10 feet away from the router, it's just in another room. The reason I don't plug it into the router is because I don't want the server in a very active/public place to avoid any damages. I've actually tried to use power line networking before (some Netgear model), but it actually gave me a worse transfer speeds wireless. I believe it had to do with too much interference that degraded the quality. Even if I got a dud, would I even be able to pair up powerline networking with a gigabit connection? Also, I'm looking to the replace my WNR2000, so I'm not too interest if it can run DD-WRT or Tomato. We're trying to stream content to 2-3 devices at a time and I don't think the Netgear is up to the task.
 

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IMO it is not good practice to connect a server to a network via wireless - always make sure it uses a wired connection. Ideally you'd wire the whole house up so that there were ethernet ports available where ever they were needed.

Apart from that, the next best thing to improve transfer speeds where an ethernet cable connection is not available is EoP (Ethernet over Powerline)

The newer 500Mbps EoP kits are actually pretty fast - for instance, the Netgear XAVB5101 powerline nano 500 kit is capable of transfer speeds in excess of 115Mbps - almost double the transfer speed of 802.11n wireless.

Try this for the fastest transfer speeds across your LAN:
  • Buy a wireless (802.11n) router that has a built-in gigabit switch (something like the D-Link DIR-835 or TP-Link TL-WDR4300 N750 etc)
  • Connect your NAS to it via ethernet cable
  • Use EoP to connect any PCs that have no wired connection back to the gigabit switch
  • Use 802.11n with laptops and other wireless devices.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sounds good. How would those routers compare to a Netgear WNDR4000 N750 which can be found for 85$ factory refurbished? Also, is there no method to obtain high speeds wirelessly from a gigabit router aside from the EoP route?
 

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What would your budget be for a new Router?
What features would you like on it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ideally no more $100. I like to mess around with my tech, so DDWRT is very appealing. The basic goal is to speed up the network so I won't get constant complains about a file taking to long to stream from the server. Aside from that, nothing too extravagant, just the basics.
 
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