Can Netgear Work With Apple?

By Dan Stone

Netgear specializes in computer networking hardware.
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Netgear devices generally support PCs, but support for Apple products varies from device to device on the Netgear side. The major compatibility issues come from devices that connect directly to the computer and require specialized software or drivers to operate. Netgear and its business partners may or may not provide the software necessary for these products. Standalone devices, such as Netgear routers and access points, are compatible with Apple products.

Wi-Fi Adapters

Netgear's WiFi adapters are mostly incompatible with Apple computers.
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Netgear's Universal Serial Bus and Peripheral Component Interconnect Wi-Fi adapters are generally not compatible with Apple computers. Netgear has issued Mac driver support for the WG111v3 USB adapter, but generally does not include or support Mac drivers with their Wi-Fi adapter devices. Netgear worked with a company called OrangeWare to develop special Mac drivers for eight Netgear Wi-Fi adapters. These drivers were available for an additional $15, but are no longer available for purchase. You can use those eight models with a Mac if you have an old license for the drivers from when they were available.

Routers, Access Points and Range Extenders

Netgear's routers work with Apple devices.
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Netgear's routers, access points and range extenders are compatible with Apple computers. The devices that handle network communications between devices like computers and modems are platform-agnostic because they run their own operating software. The computer is unable to run networking features without the device, but the network communication device doesn't need a computer to run. You can add an iPad or a MacBook to a network running off a Netgear router without any compatibility issues.

Network Attached Storage Devices

A NAS server is basically a box full of hard drives shared over a network.
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Netgear's network-attached storage are also compatible with Apple devices. NAS servers are used to store and recall data for other computers on the network. Like network devices, NAS devices run their own software and do not need a computer to operate. Transferring data between a Mac and a PC-based server requires special software or specific hard drive formatting; however, Netgear's NAS systems handle the data access independently and make the hard drives readable for PCs and Apple devices. Netgear's NAS devices are compatible with Apple's Time Machine software.

Wired Ethernet Devices

Wired Netgear devices won't have a problem working with Apple devices.
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Netgear's wired Ethernet devices are compatible with TCP/IP network devices, which includes Apple products. Wired devices include routers, network hubs and cable modems. The physical cables that connect the devices, Cat5 and Cat6, are also compatible with Apple devices. Netgear's wireless routers feature wired connection ports in addition to Wi-Fi support. Apple devices that do not support Wi-Fi can still connect to these devices with a wired connection.