For those looking for a cheap wireless N router + Print & FTP Server, this is an excellent buy!
I bought this router specifically with hope that it 'might' be able to do more than what it claims on the box, and it does, to some extent. Read on and you'll find answers to your questions that any other reviews on the web aren't able to tell you.
1. Can a USB hub be used to connect multiple peripherals to the router?
A. Yes, but with certain limitations. I have successfully connected a printer and a hard drive to the router via a usb hub, and both work flawlessly! Here's what you do: plug in the usb hub to the router, then connect the hdd to the usb hub, set up your ftp server on the hdd, then connect the printer to the usb hub, and set up your printer. You will only see the printer show up in the router's main page, but the ftp serve works fine. However, hooking up 2 printers will not work because the print command is directed ip-to-ip (your pc to the router) and pass on to the usb port. When you have a usb hub with multiple printers connected the print command will be pass on to every port on the hub. Sometimes printing will come out from the right printer that you want it to, but sometimes the command will get send to the other printer which may cause your printer to malfunction. I have two printers: a HP inkjet and a Samsung laser. It happened to me when I want to print from the Samsung but the command got sent to the HP, and HP will keep feeding paper and print out an error message on the corner until I force power-down the printer; same for the Samsung when a HP print command was sent to the Samsung it just kept printing errors until the machine overhead and power-off itself.
2. When connected to a HDD, it can only be set up as a FTP server, not a network drive.
What the differences you ask? On a network drive you can stream files directly from it, while an FTP you can only upload/download files but no running directly on the server. But simutenous access from multiple users are possible. That's an advantage over the so called "netowrk shared usb" where only a single user are allowed to use the peripheral at a time.
3. This router has a hardware repeater mode switch, which I consider a big plus. It's the transparent repeater mode, meaning it will receive and broadcast the same SSID of the network you're repeating; as oppose to 'stealth' repeater mode where you can set your own SSID and security for broadcast. Note that the network printer won't work in the repeater mode 'cause the print command will be pass on to the someone else's router (one that you're repeating). The Asus router still maintain its own ip and subset which the network printer belongs to, but it's hidden in the repeater mode. You can manually configure your pc to connect to it and you'll be able to print, but you lose internet. Not sure about FTP serve in repeater mode. Haven't try yet. The router has good range. I can receive Safeway's wifi which is like 300m from my place.
4. The router itself looks good IMO. I like the hidden antenna design.
What else? Msg me if you still have a question regarding the router.