HP laptop won't connect to Wi-Fi

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Seth Paxton, Jul 28, 2004.

  1. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    Okay, I'm at the super-pissed level right now and need calmer heads to help.

    I had a wired-only router. Swapped it for a Wi-Fi G/B. Both are Linksys, and the wired part of the LAN switched over in 2 seconds.

    However, this is my first Wi-Fi network and while I think I get most of what I've read so far I still can't get this stupid laptop to connect to the basic setup.

    It's an HP Pav. 5300 with Wi-Fi (G and B, maybe even A) that my wife bought. We have never had it on a Wi-Fi network.

    Right now it sees 2 nets, one which is not mine, low power and required a WEP key. However, if I say connect to that it seems to even though I can get no internet traffic (assume because no WEP and that the CPU is simply exchanging verified signals with that access point).

    Okay, so I open my router up. Broadcast the unique SSID, no WEP, turn off MAC filter, systems are about 8 feet apart.

    The laptop SEES the SSID and when I go to connect to it I have to select the "There's no WEP, should I still connect" box to activate the connect button. However, the connect button seems to have no effect at all (vs the reaction with the other connection that shows byte transfer, at least on a basic level).

    The laptop is XP.

    So WTF? I went with the "anyone is welcome, please come steal my bandwidth and data" mode, the laptop sees this unique SSID pop up the minute I enable it, but it refuses to actually connect to it.


    I'm weak with WEP, WPA and so on, although I understand the general principles. I just don't know the details and quirks of any of this, which I'm hoping is the problem.


    Side note - I'd be willing to take the laptop to another known public hotspot to test getting it online away from my router if anyone has advice on what I need to setup to do that. ie, do public spots (non pay) require any WEP setup or anything or do they just show up as an available connection and you just click connect and go?


    Answers could be responsible for saving a laptop from a long fall from a tall building. [​IMG]
     
  2. JustinCleveland

    JustinCleveland Cinematographer

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    I know this might seem like a stupid question but...

    Have you restarted the computer? That solved my first problem with Wi-Fi.

    It sounds like you've got the router set up, but did you authorize it and install all the software on the laptop? For some reason, my router, a Dlink DI-614+, required it.
     
  3. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    You could try giving your computer a static IP address. Sometimes DHCP can act up for no apparent reason. If you need any help with assigning static addresses just ask.
     
  4. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    I thought about installing their software but it appears to be little more than a walkthrough to setup the router via a hardwire connection, so I bailed on that.


    The update on this is that by resetting the router to default settings, including my ISP stuff, I was able to get the laptop to connect to the router. I had to broadcast the SSID, no security, etc, just as my reality check before going forward again.

    I have no idea what setting was wrong before. I had things like the MAC list setup, but I turned that off and it didn't fix it so who knows. Moot point now.

    From that I got the router back in contact with the ISP (hardwired system working fine).

    New problem is in getting the laptop to utilize the wireless connection as an online connection. My best guess is that maybe some fault with the TCP/IP software is happening. I didn't try a static IP or anything yet. Lots of possible things to try.

    I didn't turn on the security because I don't want to go forward until I have the unsecure version working.

    I took the Ethernet and Firewire ports off the bridge in software but that didn't change anything (ran into trouble with the wireless mucking up the bridge when we connected at a hotel (hardwire) last year, so I figured it was worth a shot.


    All I know is that if an BSEE who worked for Compaq can't get this to work, how can it be mainstream.

    Of course I suspect most of the issues are with the laptop, who's floppy is broken, the hardwire LAN connection is loose (disconnects easily), crashes for unknown reasons (almost out of the box it has done this, looks like a BIOS or OS issue), and won't recognize the keyboard if the PS/2 connection is plugged in when it boots up (you can only add it after the fact).

    This is what makes the whole thing more troubling because I can't fully trust the laptop as a known good quantity.


    Oh, one other thing. The laptop wireless is internal but I put it 3 feet from the router and it still only got a 4 of 5 signal. If I move it 6-7 feet away it drops to a 1-2 strength. This is via open air, no walls or wires.

    I mean I bought it so that I could get a signal 2 floors below some 50 feet away. That strength can't be right can it? I thought G could handle a couple of basic walls. Hell, at least 10 feet of open air.

    Funny thing is that I'm getting a signal just as strong from a rogue external source.

    And yes I changed channels a couple of times. All the same thing.


    I may go explore the setup software to see if there are some utilities or something. I just wish I had some known good starting point to work from, which is why I might take the laptop off to some public access point.
     

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