Wireless Connections

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Will the Sec, Jan 27, 2008.

  1. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    We've bought a laptop to facilitate my wife's studies, and I'm having problems with the wireless connection. The Laptop is an E-i System 4113, nothing special, Wi Fi enabled. The laptop does find the broadband connection via the BT Home Hub, and generally loads web sites OK, but as soon as I try to download anything, (latest flash player for example) the process stalls and then fails. I've tried it with the Ethernet connection to the Hub, and that works very well, but the wireless connection is very slow. I really don't want to have to return the laptop, so has anyone any ideas about what the problem might be?
  2. S Carey

    S Carey New Member

    Could be your anti-virus software. Try uninstalling it and see if it makes a difference.

    Happened with mine not long ago on my work laptop. I was running a version of Sophos. The guys at work installed a newer update and now its great, but the old problems sound the same as yours.
  3. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    Actually, I wouldn't recommend removing your AV! Sophos suggest that allowing an unprotected machine (no firewall, and an unpatched XP - so it is a "worst case") to connect to the internet will lead to it being infected in < 1 hour. Certainly don't disable your firewall unless you know what you're doing.

    The BT Home Hub isn't the most secure box in the world:

    What signal strength / connection speed are you getting on your wireless connection?

    Try http://resources.zdnet.co.uk/speedtest/
    on it and see what connection speed you're seeing.

    I would have thought the most likely problem is that you're seeing another WiFi (from one of your neighbours) on the same channel and its interfering. Try changing the channel you're using for broadband (if you can't figure out how to do it, PM me - I'm sure I've got the BT docs somewhere: my sister-in-law had problems with hers and I saved them away for future reference)

  4. cornet1991

    cornet1991 New Member

    sometimes it depends on the o.s ur using. Obviously something like windows vista would run internet a bit more quickly than windows xp of windows 2000. It could also be to do with the thing your downloading it may be too big for the wireless connection to handle. Or the wireless connection may loose signel. Sometimes mine flicks between 36mbps and 58mbps.
  5. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    Er no. Vista runs like a lame dog in comparison with XP or 2k.
    being articles I could find in a couple of minutes - plus you need twice the RAM to run Vista - try Vista in < 1Gb RAM and you'll see how it fares.

    It is supposed to run a little better with SP1 installed but I've not tried that personally.

    We allocate extra time to Vista testing in comparison to other OS's (we use them all).

    I still think that Will's problem is most likely to be co-channel interference from a neighbour's WiFi installation and the moving to another would fix it.
  6. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Go and get a Mac Will... you won't go back to XP or Vista then that's for sure.

    On a perhaps somewhat more serious note, Neil offers some great advice there, and
    I'd guess the resolution to your issues rests somewhere there.

    I have a home network set up, with all machines sharing two printers (laser and inkjet), and two additional external hard drives... all wirelessly. Once it is all set up, I am sure you'll be steaming ahead.
  7. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    And when you want more buttons on your mouse, you can run Boot Camp on the Mac and boot into XP (or run it as a VM)... ;)

    Thinking about it a bit more: switch your router off, then get the laptop to search for which wireless networks it can see and what channels they're on. Can't tell you how to do that, as I don't know which software your laptop is running, but it usually involves clicking on the wireless icon in the system tray. Then program your router to use (at best) a channel that has no other users, or failing that one that's a weak signal.

    DON'T FORGET to change the admin password on your router now you've opened the wireless window. You should also change the SSID to something different from the default (and turn off its broadcast once you're up and working), enable encryption (which involves using the same string to set up laptop and router) - WPA is better than WEP, and switch off Universal Plug and Play. Lastly, again once you're up and running, you could put Mac Address filtering on - which will prevent your router talking to anything other than devices you know about (and will stop "passers by" accessing it easily).
    See: http://www.sophos.com/pressoffice/news/articles/2007/11/wi-fi.html
    for the "why's".
  8. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Hi Neil... I have enough buttons on my Mac mouse already thanks matey. Despite what people think, the standard mouse on a Mac indeed has right and left click, and a scroll wheel, plus two other side buttons.

    There may only be a single button, but if you press this with your index finger on the left hand side of the mouse it recognises a left click, and if you press this with your index finger on the right hand side of the mouse it recognises it as a right click. :)

  9. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    The thing with laptops is that often they have their own bespoke wireless software, and the Windows one as well. If both are running the two may not "get on" too well (have one in the family like this, a Toshiba).

    Sometimes getting rid of all the network connections via Control Panel, then creating a new (wireless) one will sort it. Windows is funny like that sometimes.
  10. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    Thanks for all the advice - I'm on top of most of the things mentioned - the laptop ran a lot better today than before, having switched off an "auto check for phishing" function. The acid test will be when Nina starts university again Wednesday week, and accessing the UEL site is necessary....
  11. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    It's my guess Will that you're using Internet Explorer 7...? I'd visit www.getfirefox.com and grab a copy of the latest version of Firefox. Free, and very good, much better than IE6 or IE7.
  12. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    Well, now that I've been able to download things, Firefox it is for most things - but it doesn't agree with the university site, so it's IE ot the BT yahoo browser for that.

    I've also downloaded Adaware from lavasoft - what else in the way of freware do people recommend?
  13. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    AVG and Zone Alarm (the free versions), Antivirus and Firewall respectively. I've been using them on an XP PC for 2 years and Vista Laptop for about 6 months, and had no problems.
  14. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    You could use the "IE Tab" browser add on for Firefox that enables you to run tabs with IE's rendering engine (but Firefox's communications). I use it at work even for bits of the intranet that only work with IE (like Mercury Quality Centre!)... (It's similar technology to the way BT/Yahoo's browser works)

    There might be some others that you'd like (like perhaps a more sophisticated popup blocker)
  15. cornet1991

    cornet1991 New Member

    ye same i been using AVG for like ages actually as long as i can remember and i have never had a problem
  16. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    tMP is the resource for everything Will..



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