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on 7 August 2014
I started out feeling surprised that so many features were available in such a cheap router. Over time, though, I started to notice the problems.

Large file transfers over WiFi are slow. Very slow. Like 3 MBps slow between a wired and a wireless device. If you're not technically minded, that's very, very, very slow.

Then came the broadband problems.

Let me prefix this with the note that I live in the armpit of nowhere and our broadband download speed is estimated to be "up to" 2 Mbps, with the wind in the right direction, by BT.

With this device as acting as our ADSL modem -- in bridge mode with WiFi turned off (Ie. it's not doing anything other than providing an ADLS connection) our max download speed is 1.2 Mbps.

One. Point. Two.
At this speed, YouTube doesn't work.

Replacing this device with a ancient modem provided for free by an old ISP, gets us over 3Mbps download -- over double the speed -- using the exact same bridge mode configuration and using the exact same wires and physical set up.

Over. Double. The speed.

It's taken a long time to recognize that this unit is crap at handling busy WiFi networking and crap at handling ADSL. But since these are two key features of the unit, I'd say that it is utter rubbish and I regret ever buying it.

In fact, I've only turned it on again today because my ISP insists on testing each piece of my home network before they will admit that there's a fault at their end.

In summation; looks fancy, but utter crap.
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on 19 March 2015
From a BT infinity customer I went with this as I read some of the BT reviewers opinions which were a bit mixed but i thought id give it a go BUT this is complete pain up the behind. The set up is ancient. The tiny disk thats supplied is useless for my mac. This was the sort of set up expected from 10 years back. Why on earth these router companies can't simplify it is beyond me. This is the age of simplicity for the consumer and these companies that are stuck in the old ways won't stay around too long. Sorry for the rant but it didn't work for me.
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on 7 June 2016
Had some compatability issies so had to send it back. Won't give it 1* though because that just might be me.
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on 5 February 2013
Played around with the settings for days but to be honest there is nothing out of the ordinary here to configure for getting online - just your basic initial connection settings - which might sound good to the novice but if by using this you get slower speeds then there are no tweaks you can make!

This is slower (downstream and upstream) than my ancient Thomson TG585v7 with near same SNR. Also get higher pings with this TP Link. The wifi range was SLIGHTLY better even with a clear channel but to be honest with 3 huge antennas i expected dramatic improvement and tried lots of positioning.

Not impressed for the price. Not been impressed by my TP link homeplugs either...but thats not for here!

I will be trying something else for sure.
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on 3 December 2014
Router purchased in July 2014 and power supply failed in November 2014. Upon contacting TP-Link they pointed out that the warranty for the PSU is only 3 months!
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on 23 March 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
We have a pretty average size four bed 1920s detached house. We have this in the dining room and it provides decent coverage in every room of the house. I was a bit greedy hoping it would extend to the bottom of the garden or into the garage (separate building), but it doesn't go that far. For 50 quid, it was probably only wishful thinking it would. Set-up was dead easy because our ISP was in the pre-configured list, so it only took a few seconds. I've not messed with scary options that all routers seem to have in the advanced menus and would look to someone more technically qualified to comment on it's more advanced functions. However, I was able with no fuss to change the WEP password to something of my choice and also to plug in my printer by USB and get that working from my wireless devices. So although I had hoped for just a little more range, and to be frank it is a pug-ugly device but within the house this is a solid performer at doing it's primary job and was easy to set up - so four stars.
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on 7 March 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I struggled with this router initially, not because of the complex configurations screens (they are complex, but I'm pretty familiar with most of the options), but because every time I told it to switch to wireless-router only mode (i.e. not ADSL or 3G modes), it lost communication with the computer and I had to perform a hard reset. In the end, I gave up trying to get it into this mode, and have left it in ADSL mode (even though it's not plugged into a telephone socket).

I also found the initial WPS set-up procedure (whereby you press a button on the router, and then configure the wireless network's name and security details via the computer) didn't work properly with my Windows Vista laptop. The router inexplicably ignored the first letter of the network name (SSID) I set, and then, of course, the laptop couldn't find a network having the name I set (because the router had misspelled it). Whether this is a problem primarily with Windows Vista or this router, I don't know, but it suggests a lack of testing by TP-Link in any case.

The broadband connection is very solid, as is the wireless signal. There are plenty of options to change advanced settings (such as fragmentation and RTS thresholds) for those that know what they are doing.

I was disappointed to discover that the samba file sharing and the media server functions don't work reliably. The files on the samba share disappear after a few hours, and trying to deactivate the USB disk through the web interface gives the message: "Error code: 6102 - The Logical Volume is in use, can not umount by now!. As for the media server, all the mp3 files are visible, but only a tiny fraction of them can be played. I've seen suggestions on line that there may some file limit for each top-level folder, but I haven't tried to verify this; as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't work as it should.

It could be quite a daunting device to configure for the less technically-minded user. I didn't try the mini CD-ROM (why do manufacturer insist on using these, when they don't work with laptops without optical drives, or on PCs with vertically-mounted drives?). Perhaps that had a simpler step-by-step configuration process.

In summary, I've found this to be a solid performer, but it could benefit from a little more attention to usability, and it's not recommended if you were hoping to share files or media with it.
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on 27 March 2014
Previous trouble with wifi dropping out using an old belkin (who would have thought old electronics gets worn out) were completely corrected by plugging this in and spending 5 mins setting up.
No trouble since, it was a great buy and seems to give a strong signal.

If you are having trouble with wifi (especially on iPhones it seemed) buy this.
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on 16 June 2014
for around 40 quid this router is unbelievable. it can do adsl or dsl (cable/telephone line) as well as that its possible to plug in a usb internet dongle and it will use that connection as its wan connection. the two usb ports of the back mean u can plus in any usb stick or drive and the router share the contents as a NAS. the windows implementation of this isnt perfect tho. thats its one downside. however its perfect for my Sonos music system which suits me. it if possible to connect to the usb stick/drive from anywhere in the word as the router can also share this via FTP. infact as the windows implementation isnt good, i actually FTP into the stick/drive as a work-around. ive had it six months and its faultless.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I got this router thinking it would be better than my existing one for coverage, but the performance has been almost exactly the same- no better, no worse.

Normal ADSL set-up on this was as straightforward as the set-up on the Cisco had been. The pre-loading of a bunch of default ISP information was a nice touch, but the time that saved was fairly negligible.

My existing Cisco router, which has no external aerial, doesn't adequately cover the room furthest from the phone point. After a bit of faffing about I found that despite the three professional-looking aerials, and the big fuss that the product description made about coverage, the reception I got was pretty much the same. The house isn't all that big, and the phones aren't made out of anything unusual, it just involves a couple of corners, perhaps one corner too many.

I'd originally paid 20 pounds more for the Cisco than this router is currently priced at, so if it had been an either/or situation, I should have perhaps gone for this one purely based on price.

So my Heath Robinson backup plan was to put my old router back in its place, and plug into it a long Ethernet cable I just happened to have, which stretches half the house, so I could set up a wireless point nearer the room in question. After a lot of fiddling, spread over several days, I managed to completely fail to get this to work. This router couldn't seem to cope with the fact that (it's default) was already in use. Plugging it in as a glorified 3-port hub should have been very simple, except that doing so seemed to disable the wireless on my Cisco router. This was decidedly an "off manual" problem and it ended up being a series of consecutive headaches, including the router hanging a couple of times and needing to be reset, compounded by the classic problem that the answers to every solution would be found on the internet, yet the internet was the very thing I couldn't actually connect to.

There's no instruction manual to speak of, but 3" CD-ROM has a Windows-only installation system which is based largely on a Flash slideshow showing you which plug to plug in where. If you like the Ikea style of manual- lots of bold lines and no words- you'll be happy with this. If you're already quite savvy, you'll end up thinking, "oh just get on with it". Mac and Linux users are directed to the website instead.

Looking under the hood, logging into the router via a browser, shows a lot of extra features. Parent control allows you to block certain connections at certain times of day. There are controls for bandwidth limitations, and plenty of options for FTP, media and print server configuration, as well as all the industry-standard port forwarding stuff you'd expect. Compared to some other routers, the fact that the USB ports have built-in support for NTFS and FAT32 is a bonus.

The "run the CD first" sticker that was placed covering the ethernet ports didn't peel off properly, leaving me picking tiny bits of sticky paper out of the ports before I could get on with plugging anything in... a very minor thing, but one of those "didn't anybody think about this?" moments.

As a first ADSL router, or if you're upgrading from something incredibly old or broken, I'd recommend this as a decent choice. If you're upgrading from a router that's already half-decent, and looking for something more high-end, I'm not so sure.
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