Linksys PLE200 (PLK200??) Powerline Ethernet Adapter and wireless mouse?

After the disaster that was the Netgear Powerline Ethernet Adapters I was trepidatious about the technology. But, when I returned the Netgear adapters I went ahead and picked up the (much more expensive) Linksys PLK200 powerline adapters. Hmm… the box (and price) say PLK200 but the adapters themselves indicate that they are PLE200…

*sigh* looks like another trip back to Fry’s.

But the adapters still work really well. Trying Speakeasy’s test gets me 4-5 Mbytes throughput which is miles ahead of the Netgear adapters. Even letting them sit overnight (to get nice and hot) they didn’t get NEARLY as warm as the Netgear units. After I threw a Linksys 5 port switch onto them the throughput was still fine. So I’ve managed to network most of my new media center to the web. Even watched part of a “Coupling” episode via Netflix’s streaming technology.

Coincidentally, my wireless mouse has not been a happy camper for the past couple of days. It tracks along just fine but left-clicking (and even right-clicking) is just not… definite. Sometimes the click works sometimes not. I replaced the batteries a week or so ago and the mouse dialog indicates that battery and signal are fine so…  I swapped out my own wireless mouse for Michelle’s USB wireless mouse to see if it was to do with my mouse itself.  Nope, it does exactly the same thing.

Then, to make sure it’s not the computer running amok I grabbed the usb wired mouse from my server in the back room and… it works perfectly.

The only thing I can think that would generate EM radiation that might affect my wireless mouse seems to be these new powerline adapters. I unplugged the one closest to my mouse and it didn’t help at all but I realized a few minutes ago that I probably needed to remove both to be absolutely sure.

You don’t suppose it could be my Linksys 5 port switch?

Posted under Retail Experiences, Tech Stuff

This post was written by Marc
on January 22, 2009 at 11:15 pm

3,445 views

6 Comments so far

  1. Mark January 24, 2009 11:32 am

    Hi,

    I’m having the same issues with a wireless mouse and powerline over ethernet adapters. I’m using the 200mbps Netgear units, though I’m not having any issues with speed using them.

    The mouse has been driving me bonkers though. I know exactly what you mean about the lack of a definite left click.

    The tracking works normally until I start using the network heavily, then it also works very erratically.

    Just curious if you’ve come across any solutions?

    Thanks!

  2. Marc January 24, 2009 2:10 pm

    @Mark – Hey Mark, after using the wired mouse for a day or so I realized I actually preferred it. So I’m now awaiting the arrival of my newly purchased *wired* Intellimouse Explorer 3.0 from Amazon. :)

    Properly fixing the cord to my keyboard cord gets rid of the annoying drag that can come if you don’t set up some local slack.

    I wasn’t getting a lot from the “wireless” part of my mouse so it’s been retired. More of a workaround than a solution but one that will work for me.

  3. IKE n Lanesville February 19, 2009 7:34 pm

    WOW! Two more people with the same issues. We are using the Linksys with the Microsoft Laser series mouse/keyboard combo 5000. When rebooted, and used wired combo – Works perfect!!! I doubt that it is the EM radiation, more likely on the same frequency or a cross-octave frequency that the wireless set is using. If it were the EM radiation, then I wonder what else it is effecting ??? (ie brain and body waves) ;-0

  4. Marc February 19, 2009 7:52 pm

    @IKE n Lanesville – Heh, I wouldn’t be *too* concerned about such low level EM radiation on the body…

    I’m not clear what you mean by “same frequency or cross-octave frequency”, wouldn’t we be talking radio frequencies at that point? Just curious.

  5. Mark February 19, 2009 11:20 pm

    I was originally using the MS Wireless Laser Mouse 5000 as well.

    Some random notes:

    1) This was never an issue with my older 14mbps powerline ethernet units. It only started after I upgraded to the faster 200mbps units.

    2) The MS Wireless Laser Mouse 5000 uses two 27MHz frequency channels for communication (27.045MHz and 27.145MHz)

    3) I picked up a Microsoft BlueTrack wireless mouse. This uses 2.4GHz (not Bluetooth) for communication, I was curious if it would still be susceptible to the interference. It worked fine for the most part, but every once in awhile it would start tracking at what felt like 1 or 2 frames per second. Returned it.

    4) Bluetooth also uses 2.4GHz but has an automatic channel hopping algorithm for dealing with interference. I haven’t tried a Bluetooth mouse yet, this may or may not solve the issue.

    5) Using ferrite cores around every cable (CAT5, PC Power, USB receiver) provided no discernible improvement.

    Right now, I’m using an ancient wired optical mouse. Not sure what my next step is. Either a bluetooth mouse or a new wired mouse.

    Let me know if you guys come across any useful info.

  6. Bax October 23, 2009 3:20 pm

    Hi, I have the similar problem happening with a dlink dhp 303. 200 mbps powerline and a logitech wireless mouse.
    The logitech wireless mouse is one of the ones that has a usb connection going into a cable that has a yellow sticky post it note sized receiver. When the powerline adapter is on and plugged in, there is no tracking, but clicking works. If i move the receiver closer to the mouse it gets better. If the mouse and receiver are basically touching, it works fine. As soon as i unplug the powerline adaptor nearby (2 meters away) the wireless mouse works fine from any distance from the recevier (of course up to a max) I found this really strange, at first i thought it was the batteries so i replaced them. but indeed it was the powerline adapter.
    So can it be concluded that the small Electromagnetic radiation coming from the powerline adapter transmitting data through the copper wire in the house is affeting the wireless mouse’s receiver? I can’t really see any other explanation for this… This would definitely be an interesting project to do in an electromagnetis and wireless ommunications course!

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