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Umax/Maxgate UGate 3200 Cable/xDSL Internet Sharing Gateway

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 Author: Tim Higgins
 Review Date: 8/14/2000

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Model: UGate 3200

Pros:

- Fast!
- Seven 10/100 switched LAN ports

 
Cons:

- More ports, but more expensive.
- Large footprint.

 

 


Updates

12/11/00 Updated for 

9/9/00 A Linux firmware updater is now available for the UG3000 and UG3200. Get it here.


 

The Basics

Indicators
  • Power

  • Test

  • 100Mbps, Link/Activity, for each of seven LAN ports

  • Half/Full Duplex for each of seven LAN ports

  • Link & Activity for the WAN port

Connectors
  • One RJ45 10BaseT for the WAN

  • Eight RJ45 auto sensing 10/100BaseT LAN (one is Uplink shared with Port 7)

  • Power

Comes with
  • printed User's guide

Other 
  • Hardware Reset switch


Introduction

MaxGate (UMAX's network product spin-off) has earned a reputation for solid, reliable routers with their UGate Plus and UGate 3000.  They've also taken an incremental approach with their product line, going from a single port, to a 4 port hub, and now to a 7 port 10/100 switch on the LAN side of their routers.  This isn't to say that MaxGate hasn't changed anything else in the routers. Each generation has used different technology and provided increased routing speed, and the UG3200 is no exception.  But I'm getting a little ahead of myself, so let's start with the basics.

 

Setup and Basic Features

The UG3200 comes with a printed manual (downloadable from here (713KB PDF format).  The Maxgate Web site support area includes FAQ, applications notes, and a download area for firmware updates. MaxGate also has an active User Forum which registered users only can access.

The router default configuration has the WAN set to be a DHCP client and the LAN DHCP server enabled,  so many users will just be able to plug and go. It also comes set to 192.168.0.1 and no password, so you should set one as soon as possible, especially if you're going to administrate the router from the WAN side.

The setup interface will be familiar to UG3000 users (it's the same) and has a "Basic Setup" page that includes most of the common items that users will need for basic router setup.  The Admin pages are logically organized and Help is available on each page via a specific button or the Help selection on the left side Navigation panel.  Check out the screen shots below to get a flavor for the Admin functions.

(Click on an image to open a new window with a full-sized view)
UG3200 Basic Setup screen  UG3200 Access Control screen

UG3200 PPPoE screen  UG3200 Special Applications screen

 

The UG3200 WAN side can be a DHCP client or have IP information entered manually.  It can also handle just about any ISP authentication scheme you throw at it.  "Host name" authentication (like @Home uses) , RoadRunner TAS Authentication methods, and PPPoE are all there.  You can also set the WAN interface MAC address equal to whatever you want.  This last method will help MediaOne/RR users whose service is tied to a specific NIC avoid having to call in their new MAC address.

On the LAN side, you can set the starting IP and range of addresses that the DHCP server will hand out, or disable it and assign your IP info manually. Note that the DHCP server will also hand out Domain information if you've entered it, a handy feature for @Home users.

You can upgrade firmware via web browser (IE 5.0 or higher required), or use either a Windows or Mac TFTP client, available in the firmware download area.

Access to the Admin pages is not available from the WAN side of the router as it is shipped from the factory, but you can set up the UG3200 so that you can access them from the WAN (see this page).  The router allows more than one user to access the Admin pages at a time.

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