USB Wifi For Desktop Computer?

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  1. jimbo45's Avatar
    Posts : 6,895
    Windows / Linux : Centos, Ubuntu, OpenSuse

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Well, I've got a range extender with 4 gigabit ports built in and all the computers run at the full speed of the WiFI connection. So, I guess technically my WiFi extending and bridging devices all have switches in them..
    Hi there
    I can't argue against your hardware -- just goes to show that it's always worth trying out cheap solutions -- could be that the Wifi extender you have does all the functions of switch / buffering etc etc I don't understand enough about networking to even begin to analyse this stuff -- I just know what has worked for me with a real cheap solution - if there are better ones out there --great there's usually no "one size fits all solutions anyway" -that's what these Forums are all about.

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    #12

    Hi all thanks for the responses.

    First off, the netgear n600 router we use and is lent to us from optimum online, works great. We have no plans of ever using a different router. If say optimum were to make us a pay a monthly fee for it, we would just buy the same router from amazon because it works.

    Yes it would be a temporary thing for the desktop. I do not ever use a desktop ever. Im on my laptop always. I might use the desktop a few times and thats all. Previously it would connect to a modem or router via ethernet but we cant do that anymore because that floor is rented to someone else where the modem is. So i would use the desktop on the floor right below it. But again, im only using it a few times and thats all. So based on that, would most agree that 8 dollar one would be fine then? Now if im using the desktop daily, almost get the more expensive one. Well they are all cheap... the one i posted that seem very good is 15 dollars. But if i don't plan to use the desktop, i guess no point of getting that one?

    Someone say its only up to 150mbps. Optimum online plan we have is 100mbps. We would never upgrade to faster speed as that is more than fast enough for us. So based on that, would that mean this wifi adapter for 8 bucks is fine then? I did check the reviews and overall its good. But the combined rating of 1 and 2 star reviews does come up to around 21 percent. But 60 percent of reviews were a 5. But as long as it isn't some ridiculous 2 or 3 star overall, then that should be fine right? Also people talk about wifi extender. Well we never needed anything like that as the internet work great for all the devices in any floor. But because i want to use this desktop with internet and cant connect it via ethernet, then is basically one of those adapter i posted above right?

    Also just to confirm. There is no way i have a wifi adapter of some sort on his desktop right? Do desktops now come with that? This dell xps 8100 was bought back in 2010.

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    #13

    Also want to ask another thing. But people generally buy these adapters mainly because they are using their desktop right?

    Also do people use this for laptops and if so... is the reason because their router is not that strong signal? Or because their wifi card on their laptop is weak?

    Because i don't have any wifi issues with my laptop but my laptop is a dell xps 15 9550 so the wifi card is good.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. Barman58's Avatar
    Posts : 2,958
    Windows 10 Pro x64 1809 - 17763.134 XP/Vista/Win7/Win8.1 in VM for testing

    The add on "dongle", the ones that are connected by USB, are used with both laptops and desktops, most laptops are sold with an internal wireless chip , but as the laptop ages users will often upgrade the wireless capability by adding an external USB device.

    Some Desktop motherboards are sold with a Wireless chip on the motherboard, or an add in PCI card that provides Wireless capability, this is often a special option when the customer, (more likely a business), will specify it either as a backup or for a system that does not have access to an ethernet port. Laptops are usually supplied with an ethernet port so they may be connected into a network if they have ethernet access available.

    Basically ethernet gives a more reliable and more secure link to the internet and local LAN, although both connection Types can be made very secure, and a wireless connection is a lot more flexible
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    #15

    Hi thanks for that info. But i definitely dont have a wireless chip on my dell xps 8100 desktop right especially if this was bought back in 2010?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    #16

    paulyjustin said: View Post
    Hi thanks for that info. But i definitely dont have a wireless chip on my dell xps 8100 desktop right especially if this was bought back in 2010?
    Why don't you look in device manager, under Network Adapters?

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      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7. Posts : 1,486
    Windows 10 Home x64 and Pro x86


    People buy WiFi adapters for a host of reasons.
    - I bought an internal one [dual-band 'ac' speed] for a laptop to replace its original 2010 adapter ['g' speed] because it was slow by todays standards & I wanted a combined WiFi-Bluetooth one so I could use Bluetooth mice as well as being able to get the best out of my ac router when working with the other 'ac' computers on my network.
    - I got a USB-connected one ['N' speed] for another laptop to replace its original internal 2005 one ['g' speed]. This adapter came free with a router and I did not think the old computer was worth spending additional money on to achieve dual-band 'ac' speed.
    - I bought a dual-band 'ac' speed USB-connected one for another tablet-with-integrated-keyboard [= very small 10inch laptop] because its internal 'N' speed one was very poor, its effective speed for day-to-day tasks was appalling & it was far slower than any other 'N' speed adapter I had ever seen.
    - I bought a USB-connected one for an old desktop in a small business I was supporting because their new office's layout was too awkward to continue with using ethernet leads trailing all over the place. Their router already had WiFi capabilities that had merely not been used before. This situation was the closest I have I known to your current situation.

    I have never changed a WiFi adapter to counter a poor router signal because doing so would be unlikely to have any beneficial effect at all. The poor router signal would act as the limiting factor even with a better adapter.

    As your current internet connection is 100Mbps then, assuming that internet working rather than local network computer working is the aim, I'd suggest getting the cheapest reliable 'N' speed one [such as your "is it rubbish" one] - whether you are going to use it just a few times or regularly.
    - There would be no benefit in spending more money to get a faster one because your internet connection will act as the limiting factor in internet connections.
    - There would be no benefit in getting anything faster than N300 speed even for local network tasks because the router would then act as the limiting factor.
    - This seems to match your intentions anyway.

    I mentioned my approach to shortlisting offerings on Amazon just as food for thought. I find my approach reduces the amount of work I have to do in reaching a decision.
    - Personally, I would not bother considering one that had 21% 1 & 2 star ratings even if its average was 4/5 star but it is your decision alone.
    - I do not believe that this particular one merits any more of your valuable time but it is your decision alone.
    - High average ratings with excessive 1 & 2 star ratings indicate that there is a problem. You could spend the coming week studying the user reviews in detail to see if you agree with the low rating reviews but I think you have better things to do with your time.
    - Rough & ready ["rules of thumb"] decisions such as mine have no merit other than saving time in circumstances where there are lots of choices available.

    All the best,
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    #18

    Hi there i will check for wifi adapter on that desktop. Thing is im not there at the moment so dont have access to desktop at the moment.

    Thanks i will most likely get that one i suggested then. Because i thoguht i wouldnt even need those speeds.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    #19

    Is there a way to check if that model has a wifi adapter? It was bought back in 2010 new from dell.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    #20

    paulyjustin said: View Post
    Is there a way to check if that model has a wifi adapter? It was bought back in 2010 new from dell.
    Have a look at the back of the case, if it has WiFi, it will have an antenna connector. Because of metal case, external antenna is a must.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

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