I purchased this specific item from a local store. It worked for about a day, then took a nose dive.
The thing that caught my eye when looking for troubleshooting information was the number of refurbished units available. With that many refurbs, something is wrong with the design, or a supplier. Netgear should get to the bottom of it - some people get high quality devices - others get junk.
I did not abuse the usb device. It stayed plugged in and I used the clip and velcro to hang the unit where it would receive a good signal.
Other problems with this setup - the junk software. You CAN plug this into any supported Operating System and Windows Update will download the driver automatically. That is the one bright spot in my experience with this product.
The others who are having good experiences - I'm happy for them. However I am terribly disappointed in purchasing a mid-grade product and the quality of it being much lower than expected.
When it did work, it seemed to do ok for connecting to a wireless G network 75 feet away and the signal going through cinder block - I got two bars when my integrated picked up nothing.
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