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Any router reliability survey statistics?

Last response: in Wireless Networking
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November 25, 2012 3:30:52 PM

I know magazines and web sites regularly rate routers, mostly by features. Is there such rating, or a survey, of router reliability, in the same fashion as Consumer Reports rates vehicles based on car repair statistics? (Consumer Reports magazine has one issue every year compiling such numbers.)

My router (Netgear WGR614v6) is 7 years old. I have to power cycle it once every few days. The symptom is mostly on my wireless laptops all running Windows 7. They can see the strong wireless signal but can't connect. I've done extensive research: I know a UPS that stabilizes power to the router may help; My printer is not connected to the network; I have no Windows Vista; The firmware is the latest for this outdated router, v6, although some say any version newer than v4 is bad; I don't run BitTorrent but occasionally watch videos on Youtube; There's no documented way for me to extend the DHCP lease (it was 86400 seconds or 1 day, verified by telnet'ing to the router after running telnetenable, lan - dhcpserver - leasetime; I just extended it to 2 days).

I post this message not really for solving the particular problem I'm having, but for selection of a new router I can buy. I don't need fancy features (except perhaps for easier way to change lease time) or stronger signals. Reliability, or less complaint of having to reboot, is what I want. Thanks for any input.
November 25, 2012 9:32:56 PM

Thanks for the reply. Price is not a factor for me. What I'm interested in is rating of router reliability. So far all ratings I find are based on features, plus users' subjective rating, which is useful. But it would be nice to have data for those at least one or two years old models, about either how frequently they have to be rebooted, or completely failed.
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November 25, 2012 9:52:23 PM

I think that with all electronic devices you are going to have a certian amount of failures and the thing is that you don't always find bechmarks for every device and as far as feedback people will post a failure more often then a success because they are angry about it and when you have something that works well you tend not to bother.
So I try to read the feed back and see if there is something that is reoccuring and that will point to a problem. I've seen people leave very negative feedback because the UPS driver was late or that the rebate never came so you weed those out to see the technical stuff.
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November 27, 2012 6:10:14 PM

Thanks. Reading feedback is not as productive as a summary of a survey conducted by some company, which fortunately I just found.

April 2012 PC Magazine:
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2403727,00.asp
The link at the end leads you to the results. I only care about reliability. So the winners are (in this order) Apple, Asus, Cisco/Linksys = Netgear, D-Link...

PC Magazine 2009 result is at
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2352860,00.asp
The first few are Apple, Linksys, D-Link, Netgear.

PC World also has a similar survey, but the latest I can find is 2009:
http://www.pcworld.com/article/156459/RSrouters.html
They say the most reliable are Apple, Belkin, Trendnet.

So, overall, I think I'll go with Apple. Not sure which model. But I heard a lot of good reviews about the expensive Airport Extreme.
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November 27, 2012 7:25:17 PM

You really have 2 different type of reliability. Your first is hardware. Mostly this is going to be how good a power supply they have. Stuff that is designed for commercial environments tends to have better power supplies and the parts like capacitors are designed for long life. Look at how many 10 year old cisco networking devices you can find on ebay that work perfectly fine but nobody wants beause its too old to support new features.

The second is software. This gets very tricky. A router with a lot of feature will also have a lot more places to fail. So how do you fairly compare a router that can do only a few things but never has bugs to a advanced router that has the newest features.
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