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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-16, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Which way should I go?

Here's my issue: I own a D-Link 615 wireless router and a Tenda DSL modem (not wireless). My modem tends to get very hot if left on continuously so I turn it off before going to bed. I don't want my modem breaking down due to excessive heat (especially when I'm not home until late).

Problem is, when I come home from work and feel like going online or watching Netflix via my Xbox 360 or Wii, I turn on my modem and then have to keep rebooting my router because I keep getting a flashing orange light which doesn't go away unless I unplug my router.

Once I do that, everything is fine and works like a charm. I really don't want to keep doing this as it's become rather cumbersome and annoying. My question to you guys is should I go out and look for a modem that has proper ventilation (holes or openings around unit) or should I invest in a modem/router combo?

I really hate having to reboot my router everytime I get home.

Also, is 150 mpbs good enough or do I really need 300 mbps hardware? I'm on a 6mb dsl plan with 400 gb of monthly data.

I see a bunch of TP Link models around my budget. Any suggestions on what I should do or which brand?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-16, 04:56 PM
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You can get a perfectly serviceable TP-Link DSL modem for $20-30. As long as your router is working fine for you, there's no need to buy an all-in-one.

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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-16, 05:16 PM
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I would just provide a little extra ventilation for the modem and leave it on full time. That can be done by standing it on it's edge/mounting vertically or putting some thick stick-on feet underneath. Above all, make sure it's not stacked with other equipment and has ample space for air movement.

Wireless speed will only be as good as the slowest component and slows down further with distance. If the wireless devices are 150Mb N or 54Mb G then a faster router will be a waste of money.

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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-16, 06:02 PM
 
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Use a power bar that has a switch on it. I use this to reboot both modem and router. It is more convenient than fumbling for the power switches.

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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-17, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryBob View Post
I would just provide a little extra ventilation for the modem and leave it on full time. That can be done by standing it on it's edge/mounting vertically or putting some thick stick-on feet underneath. Above all, make sure it's not stacked with other equipment and has ample space for air movement.

I have mine resting on top of my pc case. Should be ok there....I have nothing blocking its ventilation.

I actually took a closer look at my modem last night and didn't even realize that on the sides of it there's actually openings for the heat to escape from.

I guess I should just leave it on and stop worrying about it overheating. I left it on last night and this morning when I went to feel how hot the top of it was, it actually wasn't hot at all....just warm. I guess that's normal right?

If the modem does end up frying I'll just simply go out and buy another one with better ventilation next time. I'm just one of those guys who doesn't like paying for extra hydro costs if the unit isn't required to be one all the time. But looking at the size of my modem, it probably doesn't use up much hydro...my alarm clock is probably operating at a higher wattage.

So from now on I'll just leave my router and modem on and hopefully this will get rid of my problems. I figured why go out and spend $30-$80 bucks on a modem or combo when mine work fine?

Feel so dumb at this moment......

Thanks for the suggestions.
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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-10-19, 01:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Alright...here's an update folks.

So far so good! Haven't turned off my modem or router and everything is gravy. I do notice that once I've shut down my Wii or 360, sometimes the orange light on my router comes on. But once I fire up one of my consoles or decide to use my wi-fi connection on my android, the light turns green.

I didn't even realize that my modem has vents below as well so what I did was prop it up to one side (it looks like a ramp) and this way it's getting the most ventilation as possible.

Modem hasn't conked out yet! Let's hope it stays this way.
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-11, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
 
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Alright...here's an update:

It seems my celebration was short lived. I'm still having to power cycle my router here and there. I'm really starting to think it's the router and not my modem.

I definitely want to go out and try another router and my question still stands: do I buy a modem/router combo or just a router? For all I know it's my modem giving me problems. I honestly don't know how to find the culprit.

I just remember the days when I had my 2wire combo and had no issues for years. I have a 2wire at work from Bell and never have issues with it either except for the odd time I need to reboot it.

I like having an all-in-one machine but heard there's drawbacks to it. What do you guys suggest I do? I can't keep going through this crap every night. I wanna be able to come home and fire up my 360 without it telling me it can't sign in to Xbox Live! That stupid orange light on my Dlink keeps coming on!

I'm honestly ready to throw it out the window and hopes a truck drives over it!! HELP!

I'm on a budget so I was eyeing the TP link models. Your opinion?
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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-12, 12:28 AM
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I like separate components. It provides more flexibility in case one item needs to be upgraded or changed. It does sound like you would be happier with a combo unit though. There are some decent DSL combo units and a separate router can also be added later if an upgrade is required. (Just use one of the LAN ports and disable the modem's router component.) With DSL2 being rolled out in many areas, it might be better to rent a combo unit for the short term.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-12, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your feedback ScaryBob.

I'll be using my router mostly for streaming Netflix from my 360 and since the Xbox doesn't have "N" capabilities, I guess buying a G router should be enough right?

It's so easy to get confused and get caught up with all the tech jargon which makes it sound like you'll be getting ridiculously fast speeds every second you're online.

All I see is "300 mbps" or "Gigabit" or "Dual Band". What's the point of all that technology if the hardware on the other end doesn't support it??? When it comes to purchasing a new wireless router, I'll be stuck with an N router because no one is selling a G only anymore. Since I'm not going to need all that speed, is there anything else I should consider before jumping into a new model?

Does having 3 antennas give you better speeds or less interference? I'm also looking for customer tech support that doesn't close it's help (phone lines) at 11pm. There have been so many times where I needed assistance at midnight or later and couldn't get anyone on the line. My Tenda modem doesn't even have a 1-800 number I can call....it's actually a long distance call!

To sum it up, I'm not one to get caught in all that tech hype. I just want something reliable that will work every time without having to power cycle the router every night. I actually have a wired connection from my 360 to my router when streaming video...find there's no buffering issues this way. Truth is, I use the wireless aspect more for my android phone and for my Wii.

I was looking into the new Cisco E1500:



Or the TP Link : http://www.canadacomputers.com/produ...item_id=026991


Both are roughly $60 bucks. Which is better iyo? I'm definitely not buying another D-Link....no way after my experience with that crappy 615.

I will take your advice and go with a router only. Doubtful it's my modem...I just bought it 6 months ago. Can you point me in the right direction? I do play online once in a while too.

Oh...forgot to mention that I'm on a 6mb plan so getting something beyond 54mbps won't matter right?
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post #10 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
 
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I just thought of something last night.....why the hell should I have to fork out another $60 bucks on a router when D-Link should be helping me to either fix what I have or get me another model?

I've had the 615 for over 1 year and realize that it's out of warranty range...but I feel so ******* ripped off. I was looking at a whole bunch of different models and they all have good reviews and bad so I'm honestly lost as to what to do.

Should I contact tech support and have them help me get my router working or should I yell and see if they'll help me get into something else that will work right? I've really had it up to here with this model. I shouldn't have to come home and keep power cycling this thing. I've never upgraded the firmware because I've read online that you can brick your router if it's done incorrectly. So, being a scaredy cat, I never tried to see if that would help things.

I'm at the point where I don't want to support D-Link anymore if they don't help me fix this on-going issue. If they say I'll have to pay for tech support, I will NEVER buy another D-Link product even if they had a sale at Future Shop or Best Buy with their top model at 80% off....I STILL WOULDN'T BUY IT.

If you were me, what would be your next course of action? Call them and go in guns blazing or not? Sometimes unless you complain, you won't get anything accomplished. I had an issue with my HP laser printer and long story short, I ended up getting a whole new printer and toner from them because I fought for it and told them I'd never buy another HP product. You'd be surprised what companies will do when you say that to them.

So....where do I go from here folks? Your opinion? It's now been 3 days that I haven't been able to go online at home and just wasted 3 days of my Netflix account. I'm so frustrated with all of this!
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post #11 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 02:03 PM
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I would definitely upgrade the firmware. It's fairly easy to do and "bricking" rarely occurs. Download the firmware directly from D-Link's support site. Connect the router directly to the PC with a short cable and don't turn off the PC or router or interrupt the procedure in any way. I've never bricked a router doing firmware upgrades (and I've done many.) Even if it does happen, there are recovery procedures.

You are correct in noting that N routers seem to be the most commonly available. I wouldn't get anything less than N due to the fact that there is little cost difference and most devices are N capable. (The 360 is a relic in that regard.) N requires 3 antennas so that's not much of a selling point. I would not consider dual band in this case since it is not required and it adds a hefty premium. (However, it does have its uses.)

Note that the Linksys e1200 is not much different from the e1500 and can be purchased for $30. Linksys routers are also sold under the Cisco name. Other brands to consider are Asus, Netgear and Belkin. If you are willing to spend a little extra for future proofing and a top rated router, the ASUS RT-N56U can be had for under $100. If you can tolerate a shorter warranty, the top rated Linksys Linksys E4200 can be purchased as a refurb for $70.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #12 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 02:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by ScaryBob View Post
I would definitely upgrade the firmware. It's fairly easy to do and "bricking" rarely occurs. Download the firmware directly from D-Link's support site. Connect the router directly to the PC with a short cable and don't turn off the PC or router or interrupt the procedure in any way. I've never bricked a router doing firmware upgrades (and I've done many.) Even if it does happen, there are recovery procedures.

You are correct in noting that N routers seem to be the most commonly available. I wouldn't get anything less than N due to the fact that there is little cost difference and most devices are N capable. (The 360 is a relic in that regard.) N requires 3 antennas so that's not much of a selling point. I would not consider dual band in this case since it is not required and it adds a hefty premium. (However, it does have its uses.)

Note that the Linksys e1200 is not much different from the e1500 and can be purchased for $30. Linksys routers are also sold under the Cisco name. Other brands to consider are Asus, Netgear and Belkin. If you are willing to spend a little extra for future proofing and a top rated router, the ASUS RT-N56U can be had for under $100. If you can tolerate a shorter warranty, the top rated Linksys Linksys E4200 can be purchased as a refurb for $70.

After what I read on some forum, I don't think I'll be investing in a the new Cisco/Linksys models. Some guy said that the company is able to see everything you're downloading and surfing....I don't know how is possible but after reading that, I'm sort of turned off Cisco right now regardless of how pretty their routers look.

I've been eyeing a Belkin N300 ($40 bucks) and like that "self healing" app it comes with. Don't know if it's a marketing hype which sells units but I like the fact that it supposedly can fix networking issues on its own.

I was also reading good things about Trendnet and Netgear too. All have people saying they are either fantastic or horrible. I guess everyone's experience with something will be different.

I guess it wouldn't hurt at this point to update the firmware and see if that helps. If I can't get it to work, I'll call D-Link and see just how much they're willing to do to keep me as a customer.

Otherwise, I'll have to go to a store with a decent return/exchange policy just in case I don't like the new model I'll be buying.

I'm definitely staying under $50 bucks because frankly, I don't need all those other features in higher priced models.

Thanks again for your feedback and help ScaryBob.
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post #13 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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By the way ScaryBob, I found this tutorial online and wondered if it could help my situation. After I update the firmware, should I be following these steps? Here's the link:


http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/lanwa...wtorouterdrops



Is that advice correct? If not, could you tell what you'd do instead?


Thanks buddy!
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post #14 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 07:11 PM
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Thumbs up Smallnetbuilder - Real Help For Your Small Network

Smallnetbuilder is an excellent site. I often go to it for information. They have very good router reviews. Check out their router charts as well.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #15 of 41 (permalink) Old 2012-11-13, 11:15 PM
 
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Gino:
When upgrading the firmware:
* download the firmware and unzip if necessary
* back up your router settings
* reset your router to default settings
* use hard wire connection to your computer
* install the firmware update
* restore your settings from the backup file
I've heard of issues if you don't reset the router to its default before upgrading.

One gotcha which may not apply - if you changed the router default address, this will reset to default address.

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