APC 3-in-1 Wireless Mobile Router - APC 3-in-1 Wireless Mobile Router Review

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The AP/Router screen provides further access to the router’s WLAN IP address and DHCP server parameters and you can set different connection types. Most will probably use the Travel Mode which allows the router to receive an IP address from an external DHCP server plus DNS details although it does also support PPPoE, PPTP, L2TP and static addressing. The Advanced settings page provides access to a wide range of extra options. You can create a single DMZ to allow one PC to be placed outside the firewall, use port forwarding to send specific types of inbound traffic to a designated server while basic network diagnostics consists of Ping and DNS lookups. The router uses a standard SPI firewall but can also detect DoS (denial of service) attacks and drop the offending packets.


General wireless performance for this little device was quite reasonable. We called in a Fujitsu Siemens LifeBook equipped with a Proxim ORiNOCO triple speed Combo Gold card and used the open source Iometer to test raw read throughput to a PC on the LAN. In AP mode and with encryption disabled Iometer reported an average rate of 18.8Mbit/sec which compares very favourably with standard 802.11g wireless APs. However, encryption overheads will take their toll as the same test with WPA-PSK selected saw this drop to a low of 11.5Mbit/sec. AP/Router mode delivered very similar results and we tested the Client mode by linking the notebook over a wireless connection to a ZyXEL Prestige 2602HW router where we saw raw throughput over an unencrypted link settle down to 17.8Mbps.


If you’re planning on leaving the router switched on for extended periods we would recommend making sure it has plenty of ventilation as even the manual warns that it can get hot. We did find the unit getting quite toasty after leaving it running for a few hours but wouldn’t say it was anything to be overly concerned about.


”’Verdict”’


Naturally, those users who already have APC’s TravelPower Case will find this compact router an ideal addition. Its size and feature set also make it worth considering as an easily transportable communication package for mobile workers who need secure wired and wireless Internet access from a variety of off-site locations.

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