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D-Link Xtreme N DIR-655 Wireless Router
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by Greg King on May 23, 2007 in Networking

We are taking a look at D-Links latest Draft-N router, the DIR-655, which is upgradeable to the latest 2.0 standard. We are also throwing their DWA-652 Draft-N notebook card in for testing as well.

Introduction


With broadband internet saturating more and more homes each and every day, the idea of a home network becomes more and more enticing. As many households have more than one PC, the easiest and most popular way to share the home’s internet connection, as well as provide easy access to files on all connected PCs, is through a home network.

As simple of an idea as this is, there are plenty of choices out there, each with their own slew of advantages and disadvantages. The most popular by far is the wireless network. With notebook PC’s as prevalent as they are; it only makes sense to setup a wireless home network if you are going to take the time to set one up in the first place.

However, with a wireless setup, when not done correctly, you PC can be virtually wide open to anyone motivated enough to get into it. Better yet, anyone in a decent distance from your access point can get onto your network and “leech” your internet. While laws are starting to crop up addressing this, it’s quite easy and I have personally been guilty of “sharing” broadband with careless neighbors.

One company who has been at the bleeding edge of the home networking push as been D-Link. With a wide variety of products ranging from power over Ethernet adapters, switches, hub, routers and network attached storage devices, if you need it, they make it. To keep up with the industry, they have recently released their newest Draft-N router, the DIR-655.

With its Apple white look and its 4 gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, the DIR-655 appears to deliver the goods. However, with the IEEE still undecided on the fate of Draft-N, will a purchase of this router, using the N technology be a wise buy? As we delve deeper into the workings of the DIR-655, we aim to find out if it will be worth your hard earned cash.

Closer Look

Arriving in its retail packaging, the D-Link Xtreme N Gigabit router comes with all the needed information either on the front of the box or the back. On the front, we can see a bold claim that it apparently can operate up to 14 times the speed and 6 times the range of an equivalent wireless G product. We also see that the DIR-655 is certified to work with Windows Vista.

On the back, there is a comparison chart comparing the D-Link router against routers from brand “L” and brand “N”. Hmmm, I wonder who that could be. Also found on the back is an exhaustive list of different features of the router.

Once opened, there is a large orange sheet with the D-Link support number should problems come up during installation. Along with the support sheet, there is a setup disk, a power adapter, an Ethernet cable, a stand to allow the vertical mounting of the router, a set of screws should one decide to mount the router on the wall and the router itself.

Examining the disk, it is basically a quick setup guide for those how might be new to network setup. On the tri-folded disk jacket, there is a space to write in your wireless SSID, your security key as well as your password. This provides a convenient place to store your networks information.

Next up, unboxing the router and also the N notebook card.