Wireless Lan And Laptop Computersby Mike Dobson
A small business run from home or on rented space, while it can be extremely profitable, cannot be furnished in the same style as a large-scale company office. Using standard full-size desktop computers in such a set up is impracticable, as it takes up too much space and is too bulky for cramped confines. To deal with such a situation, desknotes or transportables may just hold the key.
Desknotes are systems that can be alternately used as a standard desktop PC, but also offers portability into the bargain. Desknotes have the same power levels as a desktop PC and occupy much less room. Moreover, to keep expenses to a minimum, it is possible to install a LAN amongst the desknotes, where only one laptop need be connected to the Internet and access is shared to all the laptops connected to the network. This is also true for the devices connected to the central laptop; through LAN, all the laptops can use the same device. Thus, for small offices with three or more laptops, LAN (Local Area Network) is surely a boon.
LANs usually span a building or a small group of buildings. Connecting one LAN with many others through telephone lines and radio waves is called WAN (Wide Area Network). A Local Area Network that uses radio waves to communicate is called WLAN (Wireless Land Area Network). There are several advantages to WLANs. One is its flexibility. Radio waves can pass through walls of nearly any surface, and also do not require miles and miles of cables, thus offering a clutter-free work atmosphere. Wireless LAN can be almost invisible!
Another advantage is that WLANs are extremely easy to use. Most laptops are built in with WLAN capability. So all you need to do is plug in and make sure you have a wireless LAN card. WLANs are very tough. If one base becomes disconnected, it is possible to use another laptop as a base and can be shifted physically into the range of another WLAN. Prices are very low these days for WLAN, and it is no wonder the choice for home networks.
However, as nothing is perfect in this world, WLAN does carry a few disadvantages. Anyone can operate a laptop near a WLAN and hack into the stored wireless traffic. This makes safety an issue due to the loss of privacy. While radio waves can pass through almost any surface, too many obstacles in the path such as buildings can degrade the transmission. Another drawback is the data transfer speed. As many laptops share the same bandwidth, data transfer speeds are significantly lower in a WLAN. In addition to this, wireless data rates fall according to signal strength or interference.
Wireless LAN is convenient where mobility is required, and is the only choice in old buildings where cables cannot be installed. Companies usually provide wired connections for fixed offices, and wireless LAN for those users who have no fixed location. In the end, WLAN should be installed only after taking into account all factors regarding your office or home set up.
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