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Setting up a Wireless Network

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Since ezHealthWare software is an intensive database-driven program, you can expect a wireless network to be slower than a typical 100Mbps wired LAN (how much slower depends on the wireless system you choose).  If you must use a wireless network, it is probably best to use the exam room computer as the server and let other computers link into that system. Broken network connections, as sometimes happen with wireless systems, can result in database corruption! Do regular backups of your data (at least daily).

To begin you must choose from several different wireless technologies to select the system which works best for your office, balancing cost versus speed.

802.11b This is the oldest and most compatible wireless technology, and any wireless network device can connect to an 802.11b network. 802.11b is slow, however, and you should use it only for browsing the Web, sending instant messages, and reading e-mail.

802.11g The best choice for new wireless networks, 802.11g works with any device that supports 802.11b, while offering five times the performance. 802.11g is fast enough to stream music and some video (but not high-definition video).

802.11n. A future standard that will replace 802.11g and 802.11b networks, while still supporting existing wireless computers. 802.11n can offer better range and performance than 802.11g; however, 802.11n network equipment is more expensive, and most wireless devices do not support it.

Other 100+ Mbps wireless technologies. Most network vendors (or manufacturers) now offer custom wireless equipment that claims speeds higher than 100 Mbps. In the real world, performance is only slightly better than that provided by 802.11g and, in order to realize the benefit, you have to use wireless network adapters from the same vendor in each of the devices you're connecting. These devices also support 802.11b and 802.11g, however, and are a good choice if the price is comparable to 802.11g equipment.

802.11a This is an outdated wireless technology that offers good performance but is compatible with only a few devices.


If you are unsure of which standard to go with, just buy 802.11g networking equipment as it will be a solid choice.


NOTE:  Windows XP comes with a utility called Wireless Zero Configuration (WZC) that runs as a service and is intended to make connecting to an access point much easier, by continuously searching for access points in range. This behavior may cause random disconnections on your wireless network.  To correct this you will have to disable the WZC service and use another wireless management program, such as the one that comes with your wireless network adapter. Refer to the wireless router software help files or user manual for information on how to install and configure it.