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Wireless connection speeds

Have netgear wireless attached to a desktop computer about 30 feet away, down a flight of stairs in a house. I have a wireless usb adapter attached to my computer. We have optium online and my speeds are always "LOW".. Ran all given scans--spysweeper, antivirus, scan disk, defrag, and I continue to clean up the older files. So need help!!
rangerseqs@yahoo.com

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http://www.microsoft.com/athome/moredone/wirelesssetup.mspx#step3

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