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Networking

Best Wired Router

While wireless routers have become more affordable and popular in many network setups, they're not always necessary or ideal for every situation. A wired router provides connectivity for multiple computers on a local area network (LAN) and gives them access to a wide area network (WAN) such as the Internet. Ethernet cables are typically used for these connections and most modern wired routers support 10/100 Mbps connections for optimal data transfer speeds. These devices often have different numbers of ports for setting up a network, so consider how many systems you want connected on your LAN before making a purchase. Additional features like firewalls and simple network controls can also vary from one router to the next.

These are the best wired routers thanks to at least four connection ports for computers and devices, in addition to the input port that connects to your modem or other networking device. You get great speed and performance through these routers since they all support 10/100Mpbs ethernet connections, though some of them offer gigabit support for even faster data rates. All of these routers include excellent performance and security features, such as port forwarding, DoS protection, and firewall protection.

Ubiquiti Networks ER-8 Edgerouter 8 Port Router

For high-speed performance between systems on your local network, this wired router is pretty hard to beat. This is definitely designed for professional use, as it has a rackmount design with a 1U metal chassis. With that in mind, you get eight ports on this model along with gigabit support for the best speed and performance possible. This model has great security tools including not only firewall organization, but you can set firewall groups with different rules filtered by network address or port number. The included software makes it easy to monitor the network and provides various administration tools such as web caching, static IP addressing, and logging. This router even has 2GB of DDR3 memory to boost performance to help your network run as efficiently as possible.

Ubiquiti EdgeRouter X SFP 5-Port Router

If you are interested in setting up a gigabit network through a router in a home or small business, then this is a really great choice. The price on it is quite reasonable and it offers five gigabit ports along with an SFP optical port. All of these are configurable which makes it easy to set up just about any kind of network you need for your environment. This router includes some great administration and security features, including a zone-based firewall that lets you control access to the Internet through different computer zones as well as remote access so you can check on your network even when away. This router includes a dual-core processor and 256MB of DDR3 RAM for extra performance and reliability, making it a powerful choice for just about any network setup.

TRENDnet 4-Port Broadband Router TW100-S4W1CA

Though lacking any noteworthy bells and whistles, this is an excellent choice for a simple home or small business network. It has a single dedicated WAN connection and four 10/100Mbps half/full duplex LAN ports. This pick isn't ideal if you want to connect five or more computers together, but otherwise it's a great choice as the firewall and network management tools included by TRENDnet are powerful and easy to use, so you don't need a lot of networking experience to effectively set up this router. These tools include features like virtual server and DMZ support, along with web URL filtering and a firewall. This is a great option if you need to set up multiple small networks on individual routers because you can get this model at a very reasonable price, even if you need more than one.

Greg Wiesen
With an AA in Computer Animation, I have spent years building computers and playing video games. I learned early on that the best way to figure out a new software program was to just start pushing buttons and see what happens (saving often, of course), and that is still my philosophy. From hard drives and motherboards to graphics cards and "holographic" keyboards, I enjoy checking out and playing with all the tech I can get my hands on. I have written hundreds of informative computer and technology articles in the past, and I believe that anyone can understand and use a computer. I'll worry about research and trying out different hardware, you just enjoy the results.
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