I bought a Buffalo WLI-UC-GN usb device on Ebay a few months ago. It had to come from Hong-Kong as the device was not available. It arrived 10 days later and had been sitting on a corner of my desk ever since.
yesterday I had to set up a desktop pc in a bedroom and needed a wifi client device to connect the pc to my home network. It seemed like a perfect opportunity to try the WLI-UC-GN. The first thing that I noticed was that the device was absolutely tiny. It’s about twice the size of my thumbnail.
Software installation was fairly straightforward, after I downloaded the English language installer (the Japanese language version was a bit too hard for me). After I plugged the device into the front USB-port on the desktop the little blue light on the front started blinking and after a few mouse clicks I was connected to my wireless network.
So far nothing special right? Right. Now the really special features of the WLI-UC-GN come to light. This tiny device is not only a wifi client adapter, it’s also a fully featured wifi router! This means that it will not only connect to a wifi network but that it will also repeat the wifi signal but unless a conventional wifi repeater it has a fully configurable (software) router.
So you can plug it in a laptop (or even a pda, smartphone or other portable device with an USB port) and create a local wifi network! On top of that the WLI-UC-GN is a “Wireless-N” adapter allowing connection speeds up to 200Mbps. I’ve tested the device and performance has been flawless so far. The connectivity between a client and the WLI-UC-GN is stable & blindingly fast. Connectivity to the rest of the network is also more than acceptable in spite the desktop being placed in a area with high signal interference. The router function now also means that I can get a much better wireless connection with any other device in that area as I can route traffic via the WLI-UC-GN instead of connecting to the main wifi network directly.
So how much does this wonder device costs? An amazing 20 euro (29 USD) ex. postage! There are several listed on Ebay right now.