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Will My Wireless Laptop Work?

First, we want to explain some things about Wireless Laptops. While your laptop has a built in receiver and transmitter (called Wifi, or the 802.11b or 802.11g radio), please understand that the range, or distance that it can reliably communicate with an internet source is VERY limited. There are two very good reasons for this:

  1. Battery power. Everything in a laptop uses battery power. So the manufacturers use a very low power radio in a laptop to conserve power and extend the length of time you can use the laptop between charges.

  2. Antenna size. Laptops are small, and the internal radio antenna is really small! This limits the distance your laptop can "talk" to a wireless router to a few hundred feet tops.

We often get calls that start with "I picked up your signal but I can't get on" which is due to the above 2 reasons. Some people are under the impression that they can talk to our system while vacationing in California! A laptop is just not built to do that, but they can talk to a wireless router in your home or office, and here are 2 ways to make that happen:

What you will need:


  1. A Wireless Router. OnALot.com recommends either a Linksys WRT54G or a Belkin F5D7230-4 Wireless Router. Both can be found at stores like Radio Shack or Wal-Mart, and we also carry these routers in stock.

  2. A Crossover CAT5 Cable. The above routers only come with a straight cable, not a crossover cable, and you'll need one to make it work.

Method 1 - Low Cost

You can connect your Wireless Router to your desktop computer, and use it to feed the internet to your laptop. The downside of this is that the desktop computer must be turned On in order for the laptop to get the internet.

We can set this up for you, or, you can do it yourself by following THIS guide.

Method 2 - Preferred, Fast!

This is the better way to do it. OnALot.com will install a Workgroup Bridge Radio to feed both your desktop and Wireless Router. All your computers will be totally independant from each other! It's like having multiple internet connections in your home or office.

What We Offer

Please click HERE to see all of our installation offerings. One of them will be just what you need!