Building a Home Network - Hardware Decisions

Armed with the information from the table and our shopping list, we can identify costs for our network hardware. We may be tempted to buy the least expensive generic products. Using this approach, we can purchase our hardware for a paltry one hundred and thirty-four dollars. Shipping costs would be minimized here too, because all the products would be from a single company, in this case NetLux.

If we decided to buy name brand equipment, Computer Discount Warehouse (CDW) has a good offering with Netgear for the hub and the desktop network interface cards, and 3Com for the portable's network interface card. The hardware cost is about twice as much, two hundred and seventy-three dollars. Upping the ante even further to fast Ethernet, the cost almost doubles again. Shopping at CDW, the price is four hundred and sixty-six dollars for name brand equipment. There isn't an appreciable difference when we consider generic components in the fast Ethernet arena.

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By Robert Corfman - 06/13/98