Wireless Network is one with both wired and wireless connections. In a Mixed Wireless Network, some devices are directly connected via Ethernet (CAT5) cables, while other
devices, including Desktops, Laptops,
Pocket PCs, TiVos, etc., connect wirelessly via Wi-Fi.
Mixed Wireless Networks are ideal if you have one
or more desktops within Ethernet cable range
of your broadband modem (Cable or DSL), with other wireless-enabled devices located throughout a house or office at too far a distance to run cable.
In order to use a Mixed Wireless Network, you need a device called a Wireless Router; these devices are Ethernet Hubs (with Ethernet cable jacks) and Wireless Access Points (wireless network transmitters) together in one device. Before wireless routers, users of Mixed Wireless Networks were forced to use separate Hubs and Wireless Access Points working in concert.
present, there are three types of Wi-Fi wireless networking
(WLAN) standards available in mainstream
Wireless Routers in the United States: 802.11b, 802.11g and the newly deployed Draft 802.11n.
802.11b wireless standard allows
handhelds, desktops and other wireless devices to
exchange information over a 2.4GHz signal at up to
11Mbps with a variable range of up to several hundred feet; 802.11b is dated and the least desirable option for most users. 802.11g is
a very similar technology, but is able to achieve a maximum
speed of 54Mbps; 802.11g equipment is also backward-compatible
with 802.11b devices. 802.11n, the latest Wi-Fi standard, is still in the draft stage, meaning that the final standard hasn't been fully agreed upon by the powers that be. Nevertheless, so-called Draft-N wireless routers and adapters are sold in most retail stores. 802.11n offers up to 4x the speed of 802.11g and are generally compatible with 802.11b and 802.11g adapters.
Now that we've covered Wi-Fi hardware and connectivity standards, let's go over logistics. To
set up an Mixed Wired and Wireless Network, you
will need the following hardware:
A Wireless Router allows you to share the connection from your broadband modem with both wired and wireless devices. For example, if you have a
DSL modem with one Ethernet cable connection, instead of
plugging this cable into one computer, the cable is connected to the WAN port of the Wireless Router. The router
then splits the Internet connection and manages connectivity between wired and wireless devices.
802.11x Adapters (CF & PCI)
you've chosen a Wireless Router, you must select compatible Wi-Fi
Adapters for use in your PCs, handhelds and other wireless devices. Each device you wish to operate
over the wireless connection must be outfitted with a Wi-Fi adapter.
Like Wireless Routers, adapters are available in 802.11b, 802.11g and Draft 802.11n standards. At present,
only 802.11b and 802.11g adapters exist for Windows Mobile Pocket PCs and Smartphones.
you opt for a faster 802.11g Access Point, it's best to use 802.11g adapters in your desktops or
notebooks; almost all modern Notebook PCs have built-in 802.11g Wi-Fi.
Keep in mind that many modern Windows Mobile Pocket PCs and Pocket PC Phones come with an 802.11b or 802.11g
WLAN adapter built-in. If you don't have onboard Wi-Fi, you must use a compatible adapter. Use the Pocket PC Central Accessories Center to find compatible adapters for your Windows Mobile handheld.
the Wireless Router and adapters
are in place, connect your Wireless Router and
Broadband Modem (some Broadband
Internet Service Providers may require configuration
of the router to reflect a specific IP
Addresses, Gateway, etc. Check your documentation
or with your ISP).
the Wireless Router is powered and broadcasting, each
device (PC, handheld, etc.) must be set up to interface with the Wireless Router's Wi-Fi signal. Refer to your adapter and/or Windows Mobile device's User Manual for instructions, as each unit is
You can also connect devices via Ethernet cables to your Wireless Router (the
number depending on the number of ports the router
Mixed Wireless Network is now ready to use!