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musicbillo
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-30-2011

need suggestions on troubleshooting and/or replacing a BEFSR81? (6 devices on a router)

h'lo all, first time here.

I could really use some suggestions as to; (1.) resolving a growing network problem that I've got and, if it's going to take a new router, (2.) which one to consider.

First off, here's my system. I'm using cable modem and currently have a BEFSR81 with the following wired connections; 4 Macs, 1 PC, 1 Samsung TV.

(1.) My growing network problem is that, with increasing frequency, the connection between the cable modem and the router "blinks" and all of the computers lose their connections to the router. It requires a power-down/power-up of the router and rebooting the computers, I guess to have the router assign them new (and valid) addresses. In any case, this use to happen once or twice a month, now it's once or twice a day. I *THINK* my BEFSR81 is just getting old & tired (I think it's about 5-6 years old) and if it's the likely culprit;

(2.) I'm not finding any 8 port wired product out there so iguess I'm looking at a wireless router with 4 Ethernet porst. I'm thinking, as 2 of my Macs have Airport Extreme builtin, could I get by with hardwiring the other 2 Macs, the PC and the TV (4 ports), then connect to the router by wireless with the remaining 2 Macs. One question I'd have here is whether or not I can have 6 computers up and running at the same time on a wireless, 4-port router?

 

So that's it then. Huge thanks in advance for taking a moment ot read this and offer suggestions?

 

musicbillo

Expert
Expert
Posts: 12,649
Registered: ‎07-16-2006

Re: need suggestions on troubleshooting and/or replacing a BEFSR81? (6 devices on a router)

If you need more wired ports get yourself an ethernet switch, then you can have any number of ports you'll need.
musicbillo
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-30-2011

Re: need suggestions on troubleshooting and/or replacing a BEFSR81? (6 devices on a router)

Expert GV wrote: "If you need more wired ports get yourself an ethernet switch"

GV, thanks very much for your reply. I'm perhaps confused though between the diff. between an Ethernet *switch* and an Ethernet *Router*. I thought that a router was necessary to get all devices on the internet?(simultaniously)?

In any event, I've decided to take the plunge for the WRT54GL, which should arrive tomorrow!

Expert
Expert
Posts: 12,649
Registered: ‎07-16-2006

Re: need suggestions on troubleshooting and/or replacing a BEFSR81? (6 devices on a router)

A router (not a switch) shares your internet connection with your LAN network.

The BEF and the other "ethernet routers" have a built-in four/eight port switch. It's two devices in one box.

An ethernet switch is an extension device for an ethernet LAN network. It just extends the network with additional ethernet ports.

Thus you can get any ethernet router you like and connect an ethernet switch to it. If you get an 8 port ethernet switch and connect it to an 4 port ethernet router you have a total of 8+4-2=10 ports available.