D-Link AirPlus Enhanced 2.4GHz Wireless Access Point Review

Basic Features

The DWL-900AP+ AirPlus Wireless Access Point was smaller than I'd expected from seeing the product pictures - about the size of a stack of three CD "jewel cases" - and should be easy to find a place for. The silver plastic case has Power, LAN, and WLAN LEDs on the front panel, which are viewable from a wide range of top and front angles and operate as you'd expect them to. The rear panel has a hardware reset-to-factory-defaults switch, power connector, 10BaseT RJ45 jack, and reverse-SMA antenna connector. There are screw-head slots on the bottom so that you could wall or ceiling mount the unit, too.

The supplied single dipole antenna is jointed so that it can swivel 360 degrees and lock in 45 and 90 degree positions, so you should be able to orient the antenna as desired, no matter how you position or mount the box. D-Link has a line of optional antennas, all of which are supplied with matching reverse SMA connectors or pigtail adapters that allow them to mate with the 900AP+.

In addition to acting as a normal Access Point, the 900AP+ can be used in two bridging modes, or set to operate as an AP client. The only mode missing is wireless repeating, which neither D-Link nor anyone else has provided (yet!) at this price point.

NOTEUpdated 10/11/2002 Wireless Repeating function added in 2.20 firmware. See the related NTK.

Although D-Link doesn't say so, it looks like the 900AP+'s RJ45 connector is wired to support Power Over Ethernet (POE). POE lets the unused wires of standard CAT-5 cable carry power to POE-enabled Ethernet devices, but you need a POE "injector" to get the power into the cable.

That covers the feature set. Let's go see what the setup is like.