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Wired and Wireless Network Connections

When you have both a wired and wireless network connection made on a laptop, how does that affect performance? How does the laptop decide which connection to use?  What issues if any are created by doing this?
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Thomas Heikkila
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Thomas Heikkila
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
I see this question come up occasionally and scratch my head. You just need one connection and Windows manages best with one connection. So set up wired and let it connect and wireless should not be connected. Same if you are on wireless. I have been doing this for many years and there is no impact on performance to use one connection at a time.
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Thomas HeikkilaHead of Information TechnologyAuthor Commented:
I have always felt the same way about using one connection and wanted my thoughts confirmed.

In reality, users do not think that way. They want a wired connection for better performance but will often not turn off wireless when they are using the wired connection.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Thanks. If you plug an Ethernet Cable into a properly configured Windows machine, wireless will be disabled automatically. They should not have to turn off wireless when Ethernet is connected.

True also that wired connection generally gives better performance than wireless.
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Thomas HeikkilaHead of Information TechnologyAuthor Commented:
That I did not know! So how do you properly configure a Windows machine for this?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Any windows machine from XP on up to Windows 8 is set up default to allow wired to take precedence. So if you have not changed the metrics (and you probably have not) then it should just work. Try it.

You can go to the Properties of the Network Card and scroll down to TCP/IP and check the properties of TCP/IP.  Under Advanced, select Automatic Metric. It should be set already.

Good luck and again, I am happy to help.
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Thomas HeikkilaHead of Information TechnologyAuthor Commented:
Thanks!
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