6 Replies Latest reply: Dec 30, 2009 12:14 PM by buz
buz Level 4 Level 4 (1,185 points)
Intending to upgrade my soho network - primarily for file sharing - to n wireless.

Currently have a b/g router which I'll upgrade to a dual band router (suggestions please).

The network consists of both wireless and wired computers (6 all together - 3 wireless and 3 wired). The wireless computers, 2 have n wireless already (a MBP and a new iMac). The third is the MDD. I have an n wireless USB adapter (MAXPower 802.11n/g/b USB Adapter), but wonder if it will manage the speeds of n wireless or should I get a PCI card for it?

Thank you.

(Anyone want to pitch in the 'basic' math relative to this? Maybe I'll get my head around it and learn something.)

MBP 2.4G, 4G ;MDD DP1G, 2GB; G4 450 w/ 7448 2Gh, 2GB; FP iMac 800, 512MB, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • Glen Doggett Level 4 Level 4 (1,835 points)
  • buz Level 4 Level 4 (1,185 points)
    Thank you Glen.

    Running an ethernet cable is not out of the question. I looked in system profiler without success, but doesn't this MDD have 10/100 ethernet. In order to take advantage of gigabit, wouldn't I have to put a gigabit pci card in the MDD?

    I have a USB2 PCI card already in the MDD. Found I also have an Edimax EW-7718Un and their driver is more current than the MaxPower (FWIW). Already installed the driver and the EW-7718Un - if nothing else - it works.

    I have looked at the PCI n wireless options and they really aren't very expensive, so they are an option as is the ethernet - just not sure of the MDD's ethernet compatibility with gigbit.

    The aim here is to drop 'some' TB SATA drives into the MDD and have it be a hub of sorts, it will contain my iTunes Library, my iPhoto library, it will be a media center and it will also back up the other computers. It'll be what I think of in case of fire. LOL!!

    I appreciate your input.
  • Glen Doggett Level 4 Level 4 (1,835 points)
    buz wrote:
    ...but doesn't this MDD have 10/100 ethernet. In order to take advantage of gigabit, wouldn't I have to put a gigabit pci card in the MDD?...

    I thought all MDD's have gigabit, the older Sawtooth models had only 10/100. So if you have DP 1GHz CPUs, you may possibly have a "Quicksilver" rather than an "MDD" but that model also should have gigabit.

    This gigabit Ethernet PCI card actually can work in combination with the built-in gigabit Ethernet to get even faster server-type performance via two Ethernet cables. Sounds interesting, I haven't any experience with it.

    With all the hard drive bays filled watch out for CPU overheating and auto-shutdowns.
  • buz Level 4 Level 4 (1,185 points)
    No question it's the Dual 1G MDD and Mactracker says it is indeed 10/100/1000 ethernet. Very interesting thought regarding the dual ethernet cables. I'll have to do some 'looking in to that'.

    I'm pretty much the sole user. My wife and kids surf the internet or play the occasional game. So with that, is this comment:
    Glen Doggett wrote:> With all the hard drive bays filled watch out for CPU overheating and auto-shutdowns.

    .... still an issue. Of the four available drive bays I'm imagining perhaps 3 1TB drives, one for back ups, one for iTunes and movies and the third for iPhoto. The greatest demand could be an occasional overlap of backups in process and streaming a movie or music.(?)
  • Glen Doggett Level 4 Level 4 (1,835 points)
    I'm not really sure if you might have any problems with overheating or not, it seems like the louder MDD's cooling system might have been overdesigned to compensate for some of the other models being under-designed? (anyone else care to share their impressions or experiences?)

    I think you should use the front bays first, and keep one drive in the rear bay that is closest to the heat sink. With two drives in the rear bay near the heatsink you increase the CPU temps a little and block more airflow. Just make sure you clean out as much dust as you can when you open it up.

    If you are sharing the music library to other computers in the house (simultaneously), then that can increase disc activity, but the CPU activity is the main heat source. (hot hard drives can also have problems, so you might want to keep some externals as backups)

    Try using Temperature Monitor before and after you install the extra drives to see what your temp ranges are.
    I am not sure how hot you can get before the CPU will shut itself down.
  • buz Level 4 Level 4 (1,185 points)
    Again - thank you Glen,

    I suppose a lot of this is just a matter of trial and error (unless one is a 'trained' professional) so I guess I'll go ahead with my plan and see what results.

    I know the MDD has been famous for noise and heat issues, and as part of this plan I'm intending some of the mods related to better and quieter cooling. I have TempMonitor and iStat installed so will keep an eye on things. One of my earlier efforts at cooling included a PCI slot fan and a new and improved CPU heat sink - the heat sink has more and thinner cooling fins. The 'plan' may require the PCI slot fan to be removed when I add the SATA controller card and possibly the ethernet card. I'm hopeful the fan mods though will compensate for not having the slot fan. I've read some opinion that the slot fan actually hinders cooling to some degree.

    Your advice regarding which bays to use first sounds like 'sound' advice - thank you. I'll try and post back to this thread with results - it may be a short while as I'm still assembling the components.