Saturday, November 21, 2009

Internet Access - The Final Chapter (I Hope)

I received the internet 'speedup' equipment yesterday and bench tested them earlier this morning, just to make sure all the pieces fit together and I could get it to work.  And .... it does work!  Very well!  Here's a dslreports analysis of the entire getup (with the laptop connected through wi-fi to the router).

It's not blazing fast, but it IS much faster than I had before!  For comparison purposes, here's the same analysis, but with the USB modem connected directly to the laptop as I have been doing for the past year.   Of course, running this test 10 times will yield 10 different results (I ran it two more times and did get faster speeds), but you get the rough picture.

For the past year, if I haven't been sitting next to a window, the internet connection has been too slow to be usable.  My work is OK with me working from home, but the connection has been so slow that I've been unable to do most meaningful work.  For example, earlier this week I worked from home, and it took me about 2 hours to do something that involved loading a few 9MB files and sending some email summaries.  If I had been physically at work, the same tasks would have taken about 10 minutes.

It's incredible how much difference in my life, this stuff is going to make.  There's a wireless signal throughout the entire house now, so I can compute from anywhere.  I will be able to work from home more often (which will make a huge difference this winter when the 45-minute commute gets hairy sometimes).  I can't say enough good things about this!

Oh - it gets even better!  The outside antenna is sitting on my dining room table right now, propped up in a flower vase.  Imagine how much better it will be when I actually install the antenna outside, where it's supposed to be!

For info purposes, here's the equipment I got:
Wilson 50 ohm building mount antenna
Cradlepoint MBR-1000 router
various cables and connectors


  1. Ha! I think it's funny that you'd go with the antenna on the table for a while - sounds like something I'd do. Congrats on figuring out a good solution to the internet speed problem. I love my wireless internet, and can even get a signal outside in the yard.

    My internet was out for about 12 hours last night, and it was awful! I kept checking and checking, and then finally took it as a sign to just experience what it felt like to not be connected for a while. Being connected makes living alone a lot more tolerable!

    Happy Sunday! Your scarf looks fab.

  2. I might just leave the antenna on the table until spring! I moved it to another table so it's out of the way, and I don't actually NEED to do anything with it. It's nice to be able to use the laptop anywhere in the house. I would feel much more lonely without a connection at all!

  3. someone told me CFL lightbulbs sometimes mess with the wireless signal..perhaps it was on here..I think that my cordless phone is worse under the flourescent bulbs here in my space...sometimes I just turn them off to hear better...