Thursday, September 18, 2008

Netgear WNR3500: disappointing

Here is my short review of the Netgear WNR3500.

I initially purchased a Netgear WNR3500 as a replacement for my aging Netgear WGT624. Unfortunately, I had two problems, one of them major, necessitating the return of the device:
1) poor installation process
2) wireless communication drops

The installation process took a lot longer than expected: about 1 1/2 hours. It failed twice: once from an older XP notebook PC and second, from a new Vista machine. I could understand from an older notebook, but the install simply failed on the new Vista box. After resetting my network a number of times, the install finall worked from Vista. Resetting the router to its default settings can be a major pain. I learned a few things from this page:

Secondly, as I host a website from my wireless PC, the wireless communication drops were unacceptable. I tried three different versions of the firmware with the same result, wireless network drops. As my older Netgear WGT624 worked from the same location (upstairs about 20 feet away from my wirelessly connected MacBook), I have had to rollback to use the WGT624 and return the WRN 3500. Read more about the ongoing drops and DNS proxy errors here:

On a more positive note, wired connections seemed to work just fine. Also, the administrative interface to the router was 95% the same as my older WGT624, so Netgear did not make me learn new admin commands.

However, my two major issues left me with a sour taste in my mouth and disappointed me, given my positive experience with my older Netgear WGT624. Too bad. I was looking forward to blazing RangeMax, 802.11n wireless speeds. What I got was network drops. Blecch!

A Bummed Cacasodo


Ken said...

I am having the same problems with my MacBook Pro. All my other wireless devices work fine so it must be something with the how the MacBook's wireless communicates with the WNR3500. Going to have to send the WNR3500 back. A big time waster.

Cacasodo said...

Yeah, a real downer. In better news, last month I bought an SMC WGBR14-N. It is has been a REALLY solid router that has not dropped one connection and has an awesome UI to control all aspects of your traffic flow. Highly recommended.

Feel free to drop me a line or ask me a question.