My wife uses an old computer which doesn't really like having an Internet connection via a USB wireless adapter. I've tried several, and none have been satisfactory. The connection gets dropped frequently, which is frustrating for her. A wireless card also had the same trouble. Repositioning the computer made no difference. (Two nearby laptops connect just fine and stay up, so it isn't the router.)

However, the computer always worked well when I had an Ethernet cable connected to it.

I know there is a box which will connect to my wireless network and provide an Ethernet cable connection. But the terminology used is so complex, I can't tell what I really need.

In case that wasn't clear, here it is in different words:
What I need is just the opposite of a wireless router. My wireless router takes my cable modem's Ethernet connection and makes it available to wireless clients. What I want is a box which is a wireless client and provides an Ethernet cable connection that I can connect to any device.

I need to know the right name for a box with such capabilities.

I'm running a wireless-G network with a Linksys router.

  • you could do it with a ddWRT capable router in client mode.
    – Journeyman Geek
    Commented May 28, 2011 at 22:50
  • I would caution you that all of these devices have serious limitations and work well in typical cases but very, very poorly in unusual ones. WiFi client connections basically cannot really be bridged. You have to fake it, and the faking fails in many cases. Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:26

3 Answers 3


You need a wireless gaming adapter. Essentially, it provides a wireless connection through a wired ethernet port. I have used one my on my DirecTV DVR (only provides an ethernet port) to connect to my wireless router.

Here is an example: http://www.amazon.com/Cisco-Linksys-WGA54G-Wireless-G-Gaming-Adapter/dp/B00009X6DT/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1299600971&sr=8-1.

You can probably pick one up for retail $60.

  • I would have never thought to look for something called a gaming adapter. Thanks.
    – Mark T
    Commented Mar 10, 2011 at 13:38

The generic name for the device you are looking for is wireless ethernet bridge. You will find lots of devices out there, some being sold as wireless gaming adapters or wireless adapters for HDTV's which have ethernet ports.

I suspect that many of these devices are really just wireless ethernet bridges at heart, but you want to make sure that you don't buy one that won't work with a regular computer. It may be that a gaming adapter has some specialized interface logic so that it works with your game box.

Here is a link to Newegg that will give you a list of potential devices to do what you want:

Newegg Link

  • The precise term "wireless ethernet bridge" doesn't seem to be used much, but searching with those words has revealed some appropriate devices. Thanks.
    – Mark T
    Commented Mar 10, 2011 at 13:40

Sounds like you need a wireless repeater with a wired output option. I know they make them, I just don't know of any models off hand.

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