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Computex 2018 | Killer Wireless xTend software turns your laptop into a network extender

Killer xTend allows a Killer 1550-equipped laptop to act as a wireless extender. (Source: Killer)
Killer xTend allows a Killer 1550-equipped laptop to act as a wireless extender. (Source: Killer)
The Killer xTend software turns Killer Wireless equipped computers into wireless extenders via hotspot or mesh networking. The host computer can extend the network via either wireless or LAN, and Killer's traffic prioritisation and optimisation is in effect for the host and any connected devices.

Killer Networking has announced a new software product that integrates with their top-of-the-line Killer Wireless-AC 1550 network card. The software, named xTend, can turn a laptop (or desktop) equipped with the Killer 1550 into a free network extender while still allowing normal inbound and outbound traffic on the device to transmit like normal.

There are two modes of operation: hotspot and mesh network. Hotspot mode creates a new hotspot that allows the user to specifically connect other devices through the Killer Networking card. This separate hotspot mode results in two different networks to choose from, such as 'Network_name' and 'Network_name_ext.'

Mesh network mode enlarges the network area by cloning the SSID and login data from the parent network to create a mesh network. There is only one network name visible to the user here, and wireless hardware will automatically change which node it is connected through as you move around based on signal strength. This is the type of setup that is common in airports, offices, and hotels.

Killer says that up to eight devices can connect via the Killer 1550 equipped laptop at the same time. However, if the host notebook is also connected to the router via WiFi, then it will split the bandwidth and only let all connected devices use up to half, leaving the other half for the host computer. If the host PC is connected via LAN, the xTend software will allow connected devices to use all available wireless bandwidth.

Killer’s traffic prioritization is also in effect here, helping to shape the traffic at two points. Firstly, it will continue to prioritize game and streaming traffic above other types. But it will also assign a higher priority to traffic generated by the host computer than the same type of traffic created by a connected device.

The Killer xTend software will be available soon for laptops equipped with the Killer 1550. The older Killer 1535 will receive support later, but with a reduced feature set.

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Visual representation of Killer's network prioritisation.
Visual representation of Killer's network prioritisation.
Visual representation of Killer's xTend network extension
Visual representation of Killer's xTend network extension

Source(s)

Rivet Networks

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2018 06 > Killer Wireless xTend software turns your laptop into a network extender
Craig Ward, 2018-06- 4 (Update: 2018-06- 4)
Craig Ward
Craig Ward - News Editor
I grew up in a family surrounded by technology, starting with my father loading up games for me on a Commodore 64, and later on a 486. In the late 90's and early 00's I started learning how to tinker with Windows, while also playing around with Linux distributions, both of which gave me an interest for learning how to make software do what you want it to do, and modifying settings that aren't normally user accessible. After this I started building my own computers, and tearing laptops apart, which gave me an insight into hardware and how it works in a complete system. Now keeping up with the latest in hardware and software news is a passion of mine.