Cisco M20 Valet Plus 802.11n Wireless Router: Simple Networking for Home Users


Cisco's new Valet Plus wireless router doesn't promise a whole bunch of fancy features or apps. What it does promise is that you can set it up and have a secure, working wireless Internet connection going in minutes. That's why, when you first open the box, you see a USB thumb drive and a device that looks like a cross behind a Honda Civic and an Apple AirPort Extreme Base Station--and nothing else.
Once you take the Valet Plus out of the box, of course, you'll find the ethernet cable and a power cord. Instead of a manual, you get a small, fold-out pamphlet that shows off all the things you can do with your new wireless router (share files). No complicated instructions, no lengthy disclaimers--it tells you on the inside flap just to stick the USB drive in your PC (or Mac) and go.
The Valet Plus is the higher-end cousin of Cisco's Valet router; the main difference between the $100 Valet and the $150 Valet Plus (prices as of March 31, 2010) is the latter's extra radio antenna and gigabit ethernet ports, which make for a stronger signal and faster wired-networking speeds. Otherwise, the features, the setup process, and the software are identical.

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