Homeplug – First impressions

My Devolo 85Mb/s starter kit arrived this morning. Everything was nicely packaged and the two supplied cables are good quality shielded cat5e. I know it’s silly but little things like that impress me.

The instructions come as a PDF file and I had no trouble skipping most of the blurb and getting straight to the installation section. One minor issue is that Windows is required in order to configure these devices. That seems a pity when they could be purchased for any Ethernet devices. I have a Windows laptop, lucky me.

The setup is incredibly simple and the software finds the adaptor on the local network segment automatically. It reports this as being the adaptor attached to the local PC which is plain wrong but I guess they word it like this for non-technical people. The first box plugged in asks you to generate a password. Subsequent boxes require that same password in order to communicate. I would be interested to know if (in effect) two networks could be run over the power grid by pairing passwords. I’ll have to check that out when I have more adaptors.

In summary, I’m very satisfied with these devices. They worked exactly as advertised and with minimal fuss. Next I’m going to order a pair of cheap 14Mb/s versions for the kids rooms. They only need broadband access and if that ever exceeds 14Mb/s I’ll be a very happy bunny.

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