Q

Troubleshooting wireless connection (Linksys components)

I have the following situation:
  • a DELL INSPIRON 8200 with win xp pro
  • a linksys wireless usb network adapter wusb11
  • a linksys router BEFW11S4
  • average signal strength good to very good

    When I hooked up my laptop the first time like this, it just worked fine. I had a stable connection for about two days. I then hooked up to a similar Linksys router elsewhere, which worked fine as well. But when I came back home, I had trouble hooking up to the network again. I get a connection at first, but loose the signal every couple of minutes.

    I have deleted/reinstalled the network adapters, disabled the ethernet adapter, and entered manual TCP/IP configuration. Sometimes I have a stable connection for hours; sometimes I cannot even connect. Is there anything else to try?

    Warmest regards, clau

  • After some discussion between Clau and myself, were able to eliminate a number of possible culprits:
    1. Two WLANs using the same SSID but different security settings: This is not your problem because you have verified that these are in fact two different WLANs, each with its own unique SSID. If these were two WLANs using the same SSID but different settings, roaming could be causing disconnection.
    2. WEP key mismatch: One of these WLANs uses static WEP, and one uses no WEP. Because you have successfully connected both at least part of the time, key mismatch is not your problem.
    3. 802.1X authentication failure: Neither of these WLANs require 802.1x authentication and you verified that this setting is not checked on your Windows XP network connection properties panel, so you are NOT associating with the AP but then failing 802.1X.
    4. Conflict between client GUI and Windows XP: You are not using a third-party client GUI to configure your wireless adapter; you are using Windows XP to manage your settings. XP is configured NOT to automatically connect to non-preferred networks, and both of these WLANs appear in your preferred network list. So there should be no conflict between settings configured through two different GUIs.
    5. Poor signal quality: When you refresh the View Available Networks panel, you consistently see the local WLAN, so signal is present, at least when you are trying to connect. Because you can remain connected for hours, then are unable to re-connect for hours, I asked you about possible sources of radio interference (e.g., 2.4 GHz cordless phones, microwave ovens, neighboring WLANs). Although none are present in your apartment, they may be present in your building. To eliminate this possibility, try using the AP and laptop in a different location temporarily to see if results are the same.
    6. Wireless Zero Config errors: You noted that disabling the Wireless Zero Config service can sometimes be helpful. There are some known problems between Wireless Zero Config and certain wireless network adapters. To learn more, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Articles 324024 and 313242.
    This was first published in July 2003

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