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

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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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