Can a laptop equipped with an 802.11b/g NIC associate with an 802.11n AP

If an 802.11n AP is not configured to work in pure mode (for example, the only mode), the laptop can associate with the AP. However, 802.11b STAs transmit packets at a low rate. The time taken by an 802.11n STA to transmit a 1000-byte packet at a rate of 300 Mbit/s is 1/27 of the time taken by an 802.11b STA at a rate of 11 Mbit/s. If many 802.11b/g STAs connect to an 802.11n AP, AP performance deteriorates. To ensure performance of the entire WLAN, 802.11n APs deny access of 802.11b STAs.

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