: Newbie question: AirPort

May 21st, 2003, 12:32 PM
I'm a soon-to-be Mac user and have a question about AirPort access.

What can I do with ONLY an AirPort card installed in an iBook and WITHOUT the base station? Is there any way to surf the net at home with the iBook (w/ AirPort card installed), using the Videotron cable modem attached to the desktop PC? Do I need a router or the base station in order to do any wireless surfing at home, or is there any way for the iBook to tap into the cable modem through its AirPort card?


May 21st, 2003, 12:41 PM
You need another wireless capable device for the ibook to communicate with. Any 802.11b/g access point or router or equivalent will do.

The airport card alone won't do you any good.

May 21st, 2003, 12:55 PM
thanks for the info.

i assume, then, that the cable modem is not considered a compatible device that can communicate with the airport card.

would a router take the place of the AirPort base station?

May 21st, 2003, 01:13 PM
Yes, indeed. An Apple Airport base station, for example, is a router.

Whichever system (Apple, Linksys, etc) you decide to use, it'll have to have wireless ability to make use of your Airport card. You don't have to use Apple's system, although I found it very, very easy to set up and has been excellent all round.

May 21st, 2003, 02:06 PM
A lot of the wireless routers that don't run Airport extreme (or its PC equivalent) are now on sale. I think Future Shop has one of them on for less than $100. I use a Netgear MR314 as my wireless, which is attached to my Sympatico DSL. My Airport-equipped iMac G3 and PowerBook G3 can access the internet via the Netgear.

May 21st, 2003, 02:19 PM
How do I know for certain that the router I purchase will definitely work with both the AirPort card in the iBook as well as the Videotron cable modem?

Edit: for example, would something like this work, or would it have to be a wireless router?
Future Shop - Router (http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0665000FS10023981&catid=10496&logon=&langid=EN&dept=1&WLBS=fsweb10)

May 21st, 2003, 03:40 PM
The iBook uses AirPort (not AirPort Extreme**), which is WiFi (aka 802.11b), and will work with just about any WiFi router or access point. D-Link makes a nice one for about 159$ or so ( Model DI-614+ (http://www.dlink.com/products/digitalHome/wireless/11b+/di614+/) ).

But any router or Access Point that has the little WiFi logo on it will work.

<center> http://homepage.mac.com/mcsimpson/desktops/wifi.jpg </center>

Another way to do it would be to put a Wireless card into your PC and set it up in Ad Hoc mode, which would essentially make your PC share the internet to your iBook wirelessly. This I find however to be a little harder to set up and maintain than just going for a router. Also, you only save around 30 to 40$ and the PC has to booted up and online whenever you want to use the net on your iBook, which can be inconvenient if you are on another floor of the house and the PC is powered off.

So to sum up, the easiest way to go is with a WiFi Router. Some ideas:
Apple ABS (http://www.apple.com/ca/airport/) , D-Link 614+ (Again) (http://www.dlink.com/products/digitalHome/wireless/11b+/di614+/) , Linksys BEFW11S4 (http://linksys.com/products/product.asp?grid=33&scid=35&prid=540), Netgear MR314 (http://www.netgear.com/products/prod_details.asp?prodID=115&view=) , Asanté FR1004AL (http://asante.com/products/routers/FR1004AL/index.html).

Also, that Linksys Network-in-a-Box package is a good idea, but it comes with a USB adapter that you wouldn't be able to use on your Mac, and since your PC is already online you wouldn't need it there either.

Hope this helps!


** For Clarification: AirPort (802.11b) and AirPort Extreme (802.11g) are both compatible with one another. A b card can surf a g network and vice versa, so even though the iBook can only use a regualr AirPort card it will work with an Apple AirPort Extreme base Station.

May 21st, 2003, 06:29 PM
Allez les bleus!

I just wanted to say that.

Anyhow, you will need that router like all have mentioned. I have a NetGear MR814 (I think) - which is what I'm using to write this right now. Can you say - la bombe?? I love this. WiFi is to me - essential in err-day life. Esp now that there are hot spots out and about for cats to try. Monsieur mmflame, are you in MTL??? these (http://www.intel.com/products/mobiletechnology/hotspots/CA_11_1058.htm) are the spots that intel.ca has listed as hot... But take a look for your self. INtel has more listed - depending on where you might be. There are more to come. The word is that they are going to transofrm all the seemingly useless payphones now into hot spots. BRILLIANT! Anyhjow, have fun with new airport dude...

May 21st, 2003, 08:19 PM
You guys are incredible.

Being a Matrox employee, I surf message boards pretty often to find out what people think of our cards. I can safely say that you guys have proven to be the most helpful, patient and courteous of all message board users I have been in contact with thus far.

One last question based on all of the feedback...some of you hinted that the iBook cannot support AirPort Extreme, is that truly the case? Does that mean if I purchase one, it will only run at "b" speed and not "g"? That kinda blows, but I guess I'll go for the standard AirPort variety.

Hope to visit here more often when I get my iBook.


May 21st, 2003, 10:04 PM
mmflame... you may be out of luck. I wasn't sure whether or not the iBook had a PCMCIA slot - but I just took a look online: NOPE. if so, I would have suggested a 3rd party card (like Orinoco's), but you may be locked into running the Apple Airport. Nothing wrong with it really.... The cards are totally different form factor. that's why really. Apple has to maintain some control. tongue.gif

Anyhow, make sure to be back when you get your iBook dude...

May 22nd, 2003, 12:34 AM
whoa, whoa, whoa. Now you got me confused. :confused:

I was advised (a little further up here) of the following:

"The iBook uses AirPort (not AirPort Extreme**), which is WiFi (aka 802.11b), and will work with just about any WiFi router or access point. D-Link makes a nice one for about 159$ or so ( Model DI-614+ )."

Let me get a confirmation here based on what I was just told...if I purchase an AirPort card for the 700MHz iBook (which is AirPort ready), can I use it with ANY wireless router out there (like the ones recommended to me in this thread), even though there is no PCMCIA slot available?

All I want to do is connect to the Internet wirelessly, using the AirPort card and a router...is this possible? Or can I ONLY use the AirPort card with an AirPort base station?

thanks again...I almost bought a wireless router from eBay before reading this...help me out here.

May 22nd, 2003, 12:44 AM
1. buy and install apple airport card for ibook

2. buy any of the aforementioned routers

D-Link is least expensive and there is a rebate on right now BUT i just installed an Asanté and the big bonus is that it is perfectly happy being flashed or setup on a Mac via either Netscape or IE.

D-Link has some issues with flashing the firmware via a Mac and can ONLY use IE to setup the router.

I think i have just changed my recommended router to the Asanté

Also, I called NetGear yesterday and their tech. support person said that their products DO NOT support appletalk over wireless which may be of issue to some

only one i found so far (and i tested it out today with a TiBook 15" with Airport card) is the Asanté 1400. Costs a few more bucks but works flawlessly.

May 22nd, 2003, 02:26 AM
mmflame asked:
if I purchase an AirPort card for the 700MHz iBook (which is AirPort ready), can I use it with ANY wireless router out there (like the ones recommended to me in this thread), even though there is no PCMCIA slot available?

The iBooks (and actually every Apple laptop that has officially supported AirPort) has an internal slot for the card. Under the Keyboard in the iBook.


May 22nd, 2003, 10:22 AM
ok. all clear now.

I noticed the following on eBay, and although it's a refurb and in the states, would this serve my purpose and perform well?


May 22nd, 2003, 01:46 PM
Yes, it would work, but just be aware that by the time you get it here, it will cost over $100. (You will probably have to pay 15% tax crossing the border because Customs Canada now collects PST for Ontario as well as GST.

May 22nd, 2003, 01:50 PM
hmmmm... what I meant to say is that with the iBook, you will be forced into using the Apple Airport card - but will be able to use other bas stations: to surf. I meant that for Extreme - you cannot use the Apple card - or anyother for that matter (correct if I'm wrong, someone). But like mentioned, there are many WIFI routers you can use. Look for the SMC ones as well - they had a promo not too long ago - like sub $100 for a wifi. Hope that clearer.... cheers!

May 22nd, 2003, 02:57 PM
Took your advice and went for this instead:


Can't wait to set it all up.

Thanks again, everyone. Speak to you all soon.

May 23rd, 2003, 02:28 AM
$10 u.s. = $14 cdn

i never understand why people want to make money off shipping or is it the "handling" part?

$14 is obscene

good luck with the router

remember, use IE and a PC to set up the router

May 23rd, 2003, 06:31 PM
What are the implications for Airport Extreme with the new standards that were released today?

May 23rd, 2003, 10:40 PM
The IEEE is set to ratify 802.11g sometime in June (the 6th I think) so I wouldn't worry about it until then.

Changes may still happen before that time, and even if they do it shouldn't require much more than a firmware update to bring the units up to spec.