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802.11 is driving me nuts. Anyone explain this?

 10:27 am on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

I thought this was all meant to be easy? I'm starting to look at CAT V cables and think "mmmm... cables... CABLES!".

I bought myself a wireless hub access point ADSL modem three in one thing (D-Link 604+) yesterday together with a Belkin wireless NIC.

All installed ok, no apparent problems or warnings. I thought I'd start out easy and engaged the wireless access point to work with no WEP and no MAC authorisation (anyone can get in).

The wireless card can see the hub (it's listed in the utility that came with the card), tells me I have a terrific signal (well it's a foot from the access point) but Windows XP tells me there's "no available network".

What gives? I know I'm doing something stupid, but it makes no sense to me.





 5:34 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

DHCP is used with wireless. That is how you get your IP. 802.11 is the wireless. Once you have that then you have a wireless connection. If you are getting a signal you are connected to it. You need to make a wireless connection then an IP connection (dhcp). Once that is set up you need to have DNS so you can get to sites by their name. You keep saying that your client card sees the AP. Once you see green in the signal strength you are done messing with the wireless if you have all security turned off. If you want to sticky me I can IM you thorugh just about any service. I can talk you through this. I have set up a ton of AP's. I have had cisco wireless training and used to have a comapny that did wireless site surveys.


 5:45 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks Ogletree.... I think we were at cross-purposes. I see what you're saying now, and what you've said is enough for me to go and play some more and report back. I'll check whether the card is getting an IP addy from the DHCP server.

Thanks for all the other pointers everyone. I've got plenty of things to try.

I'll let you know how I get on in a couple of hours time and may take you up on your offer later Ogletree if I get really stuck!



 7:41 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

Is "Use Windows to configure my wireless network settings" selected/checked under properties on the "wireless networks" tab?

OK, sorry to sound a little dumb, but how do I get to that? I cannot find it anywhere.

OK, I think I am getting somewhere. Apparently the SSID of the Access Point and the card must be the same? The card is definitely different - I have never set it.

Channel is the same however.

Weird thing - I have no "Wireless Network Settings" tab - only "General" and "Advanced".

Narrowing things down?


The Contractor

 9:11 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

Apparently the SSID of the Access Point and the card must be the same

Ha! YES they must be the same :)

SSID is the same as you created on the router - like "home" etc... without that you can't connect. That is your network :)

In all honesty WinXP should show you the networks available...

Weird thing - I have no "Wireless Network Settings" tab - only "General" and "Advanced".

Does your adapter show up under "Network Connections" by right clicking "My Network Places" on the desktop and choosing properties?


 9:22 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

No, now WinXP has decided that the wireless NIC doesn't even exist. Vapourised.

I'm going back to cable - I'll give it a year or two and let them figure out what the problems are and agree a standard. Life's too short - I always get worried when things are not simple. It usually spells "p-r-o-b-l-e-m-s" for the future.

I'll be taking this kit back to the store tomorrow and buying myseld a reel of CAT V. Never had any problems with that!

Thanks for the help anyway.


The Contractor

 9:26 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

I would go purchase a nice Dlink wireless adapter :)


 9:29 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

I would go purchase a nice Dlink wireless adapter :)

I read 1,000's of other posts on other forums about people that have had trouble with those!

That's the problem, I like things that work without issue.

I've always followed that philosophy and it's never let me down.

I do appreciate the help, but 802.11 is definitely not ready for me. Yet.



 9:44 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have set up several linksys routers at homes. They work very well and come up quick with very little set up. At the office I have 2 Pocket PC's and a laptop that connect to my wirless device. People send me IM's as I'm walking down the hallway.


 10:16 pm on Dec 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

I also have the Linksys wireless router and cards and it all worked great right out of the box. I have my notebook, my desktop, and my wife's notebook running on it with no problems. I seems like it's much faster than when I ran straight into the cable modem.


 3:01 pm on Dec 13, 2003 (gmt 0)

OK, got up this morning and thought I'd have one more go before taking the stuff back and I cracked the problem.

I'm not sure whether this is Belkin specific or just a standard part of the Windows XP Wireless networking sub-system, but there is a system service called "Zero Wireless Networking Configuration" (accessed by right-clicking My Computer then selecting "Manage" and then "Services".

This service was stopped, and was set to startup on manual intervention only. As soon as I started the service, everything started to work and I got the "Wireless Networking" tab when right-clicking the wireless network connection.

I've now set that service to start-up automatically, and everything is hunky dory.

I'm typing this message on the 802.11 network. Look mom, no wires....

OK, now it's working I'll stick with it, but I have learned that 802.11 is not always simple.

Many thanks again for the help.



 8:35 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

That service defaults to automatic on a fresh XP install. How did it get turned off?

The Contractor

 8:50 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

Congrats :)

As ogletree states - unless that is manually turned "off" it should be on....

Oh well, at least it's working!


 1:21 am on Dec 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

Not sure if you got this one yet...
Wireless Update Rollup Package for Windows XP [support.microsoft.com]
It looks like it contains fixes to a number of wireless problems in XP...maybe some that have been plaguing you.

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