Wired vs Wireless Network Setup

by on January 31, 2008

Q: We have a Dell PC and just received a Dell Inspiron 1521 laptop. We recently installed Qwest broadband service, which came with a wireless modem. We were told at a big box store that a wireless modem was not necessary, that a wired modem would work just fine to network the two computers for internet service. What is the difference between wired and wireless modems, and is a wireless modem really required for this situation?

A: A big determinant as to whether you want a wireless vs. a wired modem enabled is whether you want mobility with your laptop. If both machines are in the same room and that is the only room you plan on using it in then a wired network setup would work.

When you network two computers together you would need the two machines, two cables, and a router. You would have to connect your PC to the router with one cable and then the laptop would have to have a cable running from it to the router as well.

I work from home on a laptop and my husband has a Dell PC as well so it sounds similar to your setup. His computer is hard wired with a cable to the router. I installed a wireless connection on my machine because I like to have the mobility to work in whatever room in the house I want and also if I am traveling I can connect wherever I go without having to find a place to plug in at.

I hope that this helps you decide what would meet your needs the best. If you have any more specific questions please let me know and I would be happy to help further.