Summary

Our Score

7/10

Review Price free/subscription

LAN services can be opened up to external users by enabling virtual servers and a good selection of predefined applications is provided. You can add your own by entering the private IP address of the server plus associated private and public ports and apply a time schedule as well. One system can also be placed in a DMZ where it sits outside the firewall and is subject to unprotected access from the Internet.

For web access controls you can apply both keyword and domain filtering. The latter enables you to create trusted and forbidden lists but bizarrely any URL not in either list will simply be passed through making the trusted list rather pointless. The QoS feature could prove useful - particularly if you're using a data card connection. This enables you to create policies to control inbound or outbound traffic and apply guaranteed minimum and maximum bandwidth percentages to ranges of IP addresses and application port numbers.



{centre}The web interface provides basic and advanced displays with the latter providing more status information.

For testing we used a Vodafone Mobile Connect data card and had no problems configuring it from the web interface. However, we did find on occasions that the router didn't pick it up on insertion and required its power cycled. Either ADSL or data card can be nominated as the main connection and the advanced status screen provides plenty of information about each one. The Failover/Failback mode works by probing the active connection and activating the 3G link if it doesn't receive a response after so many retries. However, the firmware version in the router as supplied for review didn't support it - the options are in the web interface but we couldn't get them to work.

We upgraded the router to firmware v1.04c and found this met with some success. Prior to testing we had both the ADSL and data card connections up and running with all traffic routed through the former. We then pulled the ADSL cable to simulate a failure and the router eventually switched over to the 3G connection enabling us to continue web browsing. When we reinserted the ADSL cable the router's failback routine acknowledged its presence and swapped back to the primary connection after a minute or so. The process isn't seamless, though, as a large download running during both swap-over periods failed to carry on and had to be restarted. Furthermore, failover didn't always work first time and the manual makes no mention of these specific features at all.


Verdict

The 7300GX provides a simple solution for providing Internet access no matter where you are. It supports a good range of 3G data cards and the firewall also offers useful traffic controls although we wouldn't recommend buying this purely for the failover feature as we found it wasn't 100 per cent reliable.

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