dealstp-link tl-pa211kit 200mbps powerline network…

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I got a set of these for going across one room, and it might be some weird powerline setup in my house, but they say they have a connection and there is no internet!

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@cerberez: I've often thought this seems like an interesting idea, though I've never tried it myself. I don't know if there is any one brand that works any better than any other.

On your setup, could the computers at each end see each other? That would tell you the local network was working right and something wasn't being routed out correctly.

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I have an older version of these (TPL-303E2K). They work great. First time I tried to use the software they give you and configure. Then I read not to bother, so I reset them and just plugged one in upstairs and one down and they connect fine. I use them it hardwire my TV, since the wireless kept going in and out on the TV. I probably would never use these to replace networking computers in even a small biz environment. But for quick setups around the house, they work great.
Two tips:
-don't use the software they give you
-you cannot plug these into a surge protector. either directly into the wall or a non-protected power strip.

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So, here's the skinny on powerline:

It works like a point-to-point ethernet cable, IF the electrical sockets are on the same electrical circuit.

By "circuit" I mean your electrical panel.

Don't assume that all the outlets in your home will allow this to work in a connected manner.

IF the device are plugged into sockets and IF those sockets are on the same circuit, THEN you get a good transfer rate using your electrical system as ethernet cable.

If the sockets are on different circuits, you get reduced speeds, or no data transfer at all.

How do I know this? I bought... I tried.

My two outlets were different circuits, my speed sucked and I was out shipping charges when I sent that setup back.

Now, I have a dual-band wireless N router, and have signal everywhere I want. For a few remote buildings, I ran gigabit Ethernet underground.

Sometimes it's better to spend the big money and save the time and frustration than to try to save a buck on a widget that "should" work.

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@lparsons42: hmm, thanks! I'll check... I was trying to use it for an xbox 360, and it saw a "wired network" but couldn't connect. I'll try and diagnose it with a laptop before I give up on the things. My house is really small (<500 sq. feet), so I would be surprised if there were multiple circuits, but I don't know much.

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@cerberez: Even a small house likely has several circuits; I had an apartment that was only a few hundred square feet and it had at least 6 or 7 circuits.

If it happens to be an older house, it is more likely that you have circuits that are particularly odd with regards to where they run, two outlets could be reasonably close to each other physically but on different circuits. My current house was originally built 1897 (yes, eighteen ninety seven) and one bedroom is split between three different circuits for the outlets, with the ceiling light on a circuit with the hallway lights.

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@cerberez: "...they say they have a connection and there is no internet! "

Just to make sure, you have one of those plugged into your home router... right?

After all, they don't just make internet appear out-of-nowhere... ya gotta have that connection to start.

OK... Sounds like the two devices can get a signal between each other and can handshake... at least enough to make it report to you that there is a connection.

However that may be a pretty shaky connection. So tenuous that it may not successfully start transmitting / recieveing packets over that wire.

You may be on different circuits, but the jump to make that initial handshake is good enough to happen in your breaker box. But not good enough to send information.

Test for circuit continuity by shutting off a breaker that powers the two outlets that you wish to connect. if BOTH the outlets go dark when you flip ONE switch in the breaker, then you are on ONE continuous circuit between those two outlets.

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@cerberez: The XBox reporting a "wired network" just means it recognized that it was physically plugged into a network (there's a small current on connected ethernet cable). If you disconnected the other powerline adapter (the one the XBox ISN'T plugged in to), the XBox would still see a "wired network", because the XBox is plugged into a "hot" ethernet connection. But there isn't any TCP/IP traffic on that connection if you only have one of the adapters plugged in.

Your PC should be able to "see" both adapters when they are plugged in - you can't configure them if your PC can't talk to them. If your PC can talk to them when they are plugged in next to your PC, but can't talk to both of them when one of them is plugged in in another room, then they must be on different circuits.