Actiontec Gives It All


Home Networking as easy as AOL?

After you experience the benefits of high speed internet access, it’s like you’ve totally forgotten what life was like without the net. Instant page loads, fast downloads, music, and even on-line videogame adventures are the new norm, but if you have another computer in the house, reality comes to a screeching crawl, or in most cases, a complete stop.

Many who pay the high prices to experience broadband DSL or Cable internet service can only use it on one computer in the house. We’ve all heard of the term “Home Networking”, but anyone you know who has it, had it professionally installed (very expansive) or has done it themselves after hours of phone troubleshooting. In the end, the dream of home networking usually ends up in the return line of your local Staples or Office Depot. Why can’t it all be as easy as AOL? Well, Actiontec says it can be easier, in fact, as easy as “1-2-3”.

The Actiontec Router:
Your ticket to broadband internet on ALL your computers, without the wires!
We decided to take the Actiontec challenge and set up our own “home network”. Would we succeed; would we end up tangled in a mess of wires? Well, in the first place, Actiontec has done away with the need for long cables that people used to have to lay like pipe in order to build a network, instead they use air. Wireless networking at its finest, Actiontec tells the user that all you need are two basic parts: a box (router) to send and receive information between your modem and all the other computers in your house, and a little part that attaches to each computer (USB wireless adapter or PC card) in order to “talk” to the box. Sounds simple on the surface, but let’s dig in.

Upon first opening the packaging, things looked extremely simple, much more simple in fact than even Microsoft’s “friendly” solution to wireless networking. Each connecting part was labeled in a friendly fashion, saying what it was and what it does. The connection cable for instance has a picture of where it connects and the power adapter even says, “Plug this end into a Power Outlet.” Talk about simple! But a bright pink flyer in the box grabs our attention and says, “Start here”.

Wireless PC Card:
Pop this into the side of your laptop and take your work outside to the backyard or the front porch.

All we have to do is make sure we can view any web page before we start. Check. Next we insert the CD-ROM and it starts right away. Like an AOL install, the installation program asks simple questions and does all the dirty work. Complete with photographic images, the unplugging of one cable and the plugging in of another is seamless. Finally the install is done and checks up. Things are ok and we are done setting up the little box. Putting Disc 1 away, we use Disc 2 to set up the little USB adapters and laptop PC Cards which connect our other computers so they can get internet access too.

Wireless USB Adapter:
About the size of four credit cards, this little device is a snap to install on each desktop computer you have in the house.
With everything done and squared away, the overall install process is painless and seems to work with any broadband internet provider. We did however notice that everything can go seriously wrong on some installs if you have a firewall installed. On one install attempt, the automation didn’t work because ZoneAlarm was interfering. Also, after the install is finished a restart of the computer may be necessary to get the internet flowing. Other than remembering to uninstall your firewall software and re-install it after you are done setting up your router, everything should be fine. And if you ever get into a real pinch, the toll-free tech support line is displayed at all times during the automated install.

For those who want to make their internet experience better by using your laptop on the porch or if you have to wait your turn in line in order to use the net or play your favorite on-line game, Actiontec presents the idea of home networking again, but this time it’s in reach even for those who have difficulty programming their VCR. Got kids and are worried about what they will see? Actiontec lets you use your router to block sites, but they also have come out with a premier product that melds the idea of kid safety software with office spyware.

Actiontec’s newest product "Kid Defender" not only blocks the vast majority of pornographic content and sites kids shouldn’t see, but it keeps kids safe from on-line predators and allows parents to keep track of what their child is doing on-line. It’s almost like having on-line security team protecting your child’s internet adventures, but even better you can remotely shut down internet activity that your child may be viewing instantly.

In real-time you can view a particular chat session that your child is having with an on-line “buddy”. Let’s say this summer you see a conversation start between your child and a fellow 5th grader on an on-line chat. But you have to go to work and haven’t had a chance to check out this new buddy. Actiontec solves this issue of rightly concerned parents. Actiontec’s remote monitoring subscription service will allow parents to view their child’s activity from work via the net.

You can check out a great demo of Kid Defender at Actiontec’s website or get a Free trial: Here

To purchase a complete internet package or Kid Defender alone visit Actiontec: Here