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Xircom Creditcard Cardbus 10-100 9/10

This is tried and tested card. Using it for over a year, it has been a reliable and efficient way to connect to my network. The card comes in two flavours one Cardbus and one 16 bit. This Cardbus version is much better (since it lets you connect to your network at 100 Mbps, the 16 bit version is considerably slower). As it is this Cardbus card is more than quick enough to run programmes from other computers, and to transfer data quicker than most hard disks can read and write. To use it, you need to plug it into an available PCMICA Cardbus slot on your laptop. Boot up your computer, and Windows recognises, then simply install the driver and your ready to go. Xircom write drivers for this card for many versions of Windows and other operating systems, so whichever system you use this card should be supported. Depending on which network you have, you'll need to configure your computers network settings before you have access to your computer. Being a 10/100 card, it will just as easily connect to 100 Mbps as it will with older 10 Mbps, thus giving you a degree of flexibility. It would be worth seeing whether a dedicated 100 Mbps offers better performance than a hybrid 10/100.

One minor quibble is the fact that it connects to the standard RJ45 network cable using an adapter. If you travel with your network card, I can see the adapter snapping if you are no careful. Xircom's Realport cards allow you to plug in RJ45 cables into them directly (but they do take up the space of two PCMICA slots.

Recently Xircom have cut the price of this card so that it is now less than £100. At this price it is certainly a bargin. However, with desktop PC network 10/100 cards costing £30, some might see £80 too much to pay for such a PCMICA card. With 100 Mbps networks becoming the standard, and 1000 Mbps networks only just taking off, I can see you'll get many years good service this Xircom card.