I am having problems with my D-Link EBR 2310 router. It seems that when more than 2 or 3 people are on-line, we constantly have drops and significant slow downs. We often have to reboot the router to get connected again. I would like to know if anyone has a recommendation for a router that can handle lots of connections (we have 8 connections in our family, including wireless laptops, desktops, XBoxes, wireless iPods, etc.). The router is connected to a business-class Cisco AP.
As far as slow downs, how much capacity (bandwidth) is your ISP providing? And it is realistic based on what’s available to expect that connection to support all your wired and wireless clients, concurrently?
IOW, I have no idea what you have available vs. what you need to have an opinion as to whether a new router would matter. If you’re trying to download 10mbps across all your wired and wireless at the same time, and the ISP is only providing 3mbps peak, then obviously a new router is pointless.
Also, when it comes to wireless, realize that access to the wireless AP is serialized. Only one wireless client can be transmitting to the wireless AP at any given time. And wireless is half duplex. So the more wireless clients you have accessing the wireless AP concurrently, the more service to any one of them begins to deteriorate.
As far as drop connections (I assume you mean wireless), that could be many things, the most common being interference. The first and easiest thing to try is changing channels. Another possibility is overheating. The more ventilation the better.
It certainly is possible a one router might process data more efficiently than another. But unless one or two of your wired/wireless clients is hogging the connection (e.g., 24/7 torrents), having 2-4 users accessing the connection concurrently through your average router shouldn’t be a problem.
Thanks for the length reply. Yes, I am aware of the issues concerning wired and wireless connectivity. I used to have an additional problem, with the many wireless connections interfering causing wireless links to drop. And I solved that by getting rid of my Belkin AP and replacing it with a business-class Cisco AP. Now that's not the problem anymore. I'm pretty sure it's a router problem that remains, because the drops I refer to now effect the desktops (wired Ethernet) too. My ISP is providing about 15Mbps, pretty good capacity. And we're just surfing normally, nothing too demanding. Also, if I establish a VPN session from one of the clients to an external site, then that session works just fine.
I have read the reviews on the D-Link router on Amazon.com, and a few reviewers had the same experience that I have, that whenever the load gets heavy, the router started dropping packets (one reviewer checked the log to determine that). Another said, "After some troubleshooting I discovered that I am reaching session limit when I visit websites that don't support HTTP Keep-Alives. Basically, such websites require a separate connection to receive each element of webpages, including images and such. Each of the connections is stored in router's internal memory for few minutes and it doesn't take much to overrun the routers session table capacity."
So I'm looking for a better router that guarantees support for more than 4 or 5 simultaneous clients. I'm looking at the Zyxel Prestige P-344. Any feedback on that one or any other better routers would be appreciated.