Advertisement

There's no such thing as a stupid question, but they're the easiest to answer.
Login
Search

Advertisement

Networking Networking
Search Search
Search for:
Tech Support Guy > > >

Solved: Can you help? Losing wireless connection regularly - ?WPA and/or XP problem


(!)

GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
18-Jan-2007, 05:54 AM #1
Solved: Can you help? Losing wireless connection regularly - ?WPA and/or XP problem
Can you help? We have a small home network – 3 computers normally, unless family is visiting and then more wi-fi connections. Two laptops that connect wirelessly (Compaq Presario V2650CA - XP Home, XP SP2, automatic critical updates, drivers up to date; Toshiba Satellite P30 - XP Home, XP SP2, automatic critical updates, do not think drivers kept up to date by owner) and one desktop that is wired (new computer, Dell Optiplex 745, XP Pro, SP2) Our Modem is a Motorola SB5101 Surfboard Cable Modem and our router is a SMC Barricade 7004VWBR.

We had an older desktop with WIN98SE wired to the router until recently and the two laptops mentioned connecting wireless with no problem – including guests visiting with their laptops - initially unsecured and then with WEP encryption with I believe a 128bit Manual Hex Key. Neither presented any problem ever that I can recall. I updated the firmware for the router to V1.00.014 and then decided to change our security to WPA. I do not believe that the older ?firmware on the router allowed for WPA, but I cannot remember. I could reset the router and find out? That seems to be the timing of the problem, increasing the security, but I know it wouldn’t make sense to just assume that. We could connect with the new security but would lose connection all the time. When we lost wi-fi connection a bubble would appear above wireless adapter icon on taskbar that read that “windows was unable to logon you on the network (our network)”. The signal strength would be very good and the status: limited or no connectivity. And then a few minutes later it would try to reconnect. It would connect and then lose connection again, sometimes only a minute later. Sometimes it managed to reconnect for a period of time and then and sometimes it would just fail until I repaired the connection, though even that did not sometimes work.

I can send you event logs from this time, if you want? Logs from 2 situations: first where Wi-Fi disconnected and managed to reconnect itself and second where it lost connection and it did not re-establish. Power Save Mode was disabled under Value and Enable IEEE 802.1x authentication for this network was unchecked.

After this, I tried updating the adapter on the Compaq, though it was already up to date, and downloaded the wireless utility for the Compaq’s Broadcom adapter. I stopped and disabled wireless zero configuration on the Compaq. The connection became more ?stable. It was still regularly disconnecting but it was also managing to reconnect itself – disconnection usually once an hour at this point and reconnection 1 minute later. Events logs at the time of these disconnects read: First: The system detected that network adapter Broadcom 802.11b/g WLAN - Packet Scheduler Miniport was disconnected from the network, and the adapter's network configuration has been released. If the network adapter was not disconnected, this may indicate that it has malfunctioned. Please contact your vendor for updated drivers. Second: IPSec Services: IPSec Services failed to get the complete list of network interfaces on the machine. This can be a potential security hazard to the machine since some of the network interfaces may not get the protection as desired by the applied IPSec filters. Please run IPSec monitor snap-in to further diagnose the problem. Third: The system detected that network adapter Broadcom 802.11b/g WLAN - Packet Scheduler Miniport was connected to the network, and has initiated normal operation over the network adapter.

The change to WPA was from WEP 128bit manual Hex Key to WPA PSK. The settings seem to be all the same to me on router and both laptops.

I also tried to find and did an updated adapter on-line for the Toshiba’s Atheros AR5004G wireless adapter thinking that might help as well, but still had the problem. I hope this is not too much information. I thought more was better than wasting someone’s time needing to ask me too many more questions. Any suggestions will be appreciated. Much thanks for reading this.
etaf's Avatar
etaf   (Wayne) etaf is offline
Computer Specs
Moderator with 52,189 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Surrey, UK
18-Jan-2007, 06:17 AM #2
have you tried removing the secruity and trying it for a while to see if the disconnections occur

a good piece of software which sows signal/noise and disconnections is
Free software to check signal strength of wireless is netstumbler 0.4.0 available for download from http://www.stumbler.net/

as you say you noticed this once you had upgraded secruity and firmware

so really trying to isolate the change
ie - firmware or secruity

removing the security for a while will help us determine the issue

I assume the PC hardwired to the router- works all the time - and its only the wireless devices which disconnect
__________________
Wayne
Please let us know what the final solution was to any problem posted
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
18-Jan-2007, 09:21 AM #3
Have read you message etaf.
Thank you etaf for offering help.

Re:”have you tried removing the security and trying it for a while to see if the disconnections occur”

I have now done that and there does not ‘seem’ to be a problem now (besides no security, of course) – a nice break from the connection problems. So I guess that means the issue is probably security, not firmware? Would that be right?

Re: “a good piece of software which sows signal/noise and disconnections is
Free software to check signal strength of wireless is netstumbler 0.4.0 available for download from http://www.stumbler.net/”

I did that ?yesterday, out of desperation. I thought maybe some sort of RF Interference might be the problem, but looking at what netstumbler displayed wasn’t meaningful to me. My neighbours seemed to be all on the same channel, so I switched channels, but that didn’t solve the problem. If the Netstumbler table of numbers means something to you, I can tell you what it says?

Re: “Removing the security for a while will help us determine the issue”

Okay. I have done that, as I said. Could I put a WEP key back on since that did not seem to cause problems before, and leave that all day, assuming it doesn’t cause any again, or should I leave it unsecured today and see if problem continues to be gone all day. Note: the most connection, with the problem, was one hour.

Re: “I assume the PC hardwired to the router- works all the time - and its only the wireless devices which disconnect”

Yes
JohnWill's Avatar
Computer Specs
Retired Moderator with 106,412 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: South Eastern PA, USA
18-Jan-2007, 09:53 AM #4
I'd consider a firmware upgrade for the router and any adapters, and update the software drivers on the machines. If WPA is causing the drops, but not WEP or no encryption, firmware and drivers would be my top suspect.
etaf's Avatar
etaf   (Wayne) etaf is offline
Computer Specs
Moderator with 52,189 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Surrey, UK
18-Jan-2007, 10:00 AM #5
Quote:
So I guess that means the issue is probably security, not firmware? Would that be right?
In light of Johnwills comments could still be both
Quote:
Could I put a WEP key back on since that did not seem to cause problems before, and leave that all day,
yes that would be worth a try too.

netstumbler - would gove you info on channels in use on other networks etc - also on the graph a purple line indicates a true disconnection.....
so sometime worth running the graph and seeing if the signal goes down or a disconnection occurs - however, it would appear you have it down to secruity / firmware
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
18-Jan-2007, 11:39 AM #6
I read your replies JohnWill and etaf.
Thank you JohnWill and etaf for your replies.

JohnWill:

Re: “I'd consider a firmware upgrade for the router and any adapters, and update the software drivers on the machines. If WPA is causing the drops, but not WEP or no encryption, firmware and drivers would be my top suspect.”

Two wireless computers involved: Compaq is 6-7 months old and all drivers have been updated quite recently (though not near timing of this problem). Toshiba – owner says Toshiba is a couple of years old. I am confident he has not updated any drivers, though as I said I updated his wireless adapter in last few days. Question: If you think drivers or firmware are top suspects, is is technically possible for me (Compaq) to get drops and difficulty reconnecting with WPA if only Toshiba is actually the problem? Do you know what I am asking? I am assuming that my 6 month old computer with recently updated drivers wouldn’t be the problem and would be capable of handling WPA? And yet I get drops as well. Do these drops, if WPA involved, ?start at router taking to Toshiba and then disconnecting both of us. Does that make sense what I am asking and trying to understand?

Router firmware was updated recently (to last update that SMC has), though date of updated firmware is not a recent date. Have checked the release history for my router at SMC and version I have 1.00.014 is latest version for my router and version prior to mine is the one that offers WPA.

Notes as listed in release history document:

V1.00.012
1. Add WPA function
2. Add 802.1x function

V1.00.014 (my firmware update)
1. Remove 1986 from leap year, and add 1988 to leap year
2. If path = loginerr then send prelogin page
3. Change the minimum MTU of PPPoE from 1400 to 576

Is it possible that updating software drivers and the wireless adapter on the Toshiba alone (as I don’t belive any more are available for the Compaq or router) could fix this problem? I ask because the Toshiba is not my computer.


etaf:

Re: “netstumbler - would give you info on channels in use on other networks etc - also on the graph a purple line indicates a true disconnection.....
so sometime worth running the graph and seeing if the signal goes down or a disconnection occurs - however, it would appear you have it down to secruity / firmware”

I dowloaded NetStumbler 0.4.0 (Build 554) ?in last couple of days. I thought it was the latest version, though my first time at the site, but I cannot find any graphs or way to make any in order to see to see the ‘true disconenction indicated by a puriple line’ you mention. Got it at http://www.netstumbler.com/downloads/ .

Thank you both.
etaf's Avatar
etaf   (Wayne) etaf is offline
Computer Specs
Moderator with 52,189 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Surrey, UK
18-Jan-2007, 01:48 PM #7
graphs are standard
see if this helps with netstumbler
images from my screen
Attached Thumbnails
Solved: Can you help?  Losing wireless connection regularly - ?WPA and/or XP problem-netstum-graph.jpg  
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
19-Jan-2007, 05:57 AM #8
Can one laptop make WPA not work on network with 2 Wi-Fi Laptops?
Today we just had WEP back on and problem seemed to be gone with this change back to lower security. There was no indication on the wireless icon on taskbar that I am disconnected (the red X) or limited or no connectivity (yellow triangle) or any messages appearing about the icon in ?text bubbles, but I did get a handful of Work Offline windows dialog box appearing “No connection to the Intenet is currently available. To view Internet content that has been saved on your computer, Click Work Offline” “Click Try Again to attempt to connect”, though only one this evening. Every time I clicked Try again, connection is fine. In fact I am not trying to do any active ‘connecting’ when dialog box appeared the handlful of times today. Not sure if that is significant or not.

I am still interested in understanding technically if updating software drivers on just 'one' of the two laptops could solve this problem? As I passed on earlier, my laptop is up to date and router firmware is WPA capbable? Can I be geting a disconnection on the up to date laptop if it is only the other laptop that is not able to handle WPA for some reason?

Thanks for any help.

And etaf, if you are around...I will attach picture of same part of my screen with netstumbler, that you attached to earlier messgae. I feel stupid, but I still cannot see this graph thing or purple disconnection line?
Attached Thumbnails
Solved: Can you help?  Losing wireless connection regularly - ?WPA and/or XP problem-pictureforetaf2.jpg  
etaf's Avatar
etaf   (Wayne) etaf is offline
Computer Specs
Moderator with 52,189 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Surrey, UK
19-Jan-2007, 10:32 AM #9
clcik on the + of SSID
then click on the + of your SSID
then click on the lowe rlist and you should get a graph

Not on home pC - so cant show more details
TerryNet's Avatar
Computer Specs
Moderator with 65,980 posts.
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Ottawa, IL
19-Jan-2007, 08:29 PM #10
Have a 2.4Ghz cordless phone? Sometimes they interfere enough to prevent any connection or to cause frequent disconnects; sometimes they interfere with encrypted networks but not unsecured ones; and, I think, they can sometimes interfere more with WEP than WPA or more with WPA than WEP. That last part is just my theory, but worth checking if you have that type phone.
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
20-Jan-2007, 05:45 PM #11
Unhappy Can you restore internet connection settings in XP to factory settings?
Okay, I am now sure that there is definitely something wrong with my internet connection or ?my internet settings on my computer, but I do not know what. It is not just the Toshiba with the older drivers – maybe it had been my computer all along - but my newer computer with up to date drivers is somehow confused. I am having those dialog boxes mentioned above –
“No connection to the Internet is currently available. To view Internet content that has been saved on your computer, Click Work Offline” “Click Try Again to attenpt to connect”
- popping up all the time, but if I look at the [Wireless Network Status] screen, the running time listed next to duration shows that I have not recently lost connection – that I am still connected - and yet I have to click [Try Again] to continue surfing? One indication on my computer is that I am connected. Another that I am not connected? If anyone knows what is likely happening, I will gratefully accept any advice.

I tried to solve it myself before sending this and used System Restore back to before I was using WPA settings, hoping that would restore my internet conneciton back to a time when I was not having a problem. I also ran my anti-virus software and anti-spyware software each in safe mode fearing one of those.

Does anyone have any ideas? If it was my computer actually loosing connection, wouldn’t I get event viewer messages like before saying my adapter had disconnected – I am not – or time clock would start over in the Wireless Network Connection Status box – it is not – and yet the dialog boxes telling me no connection and offering me offline or try again and requiring me to choose before continuing???

Is there such a thing as restoring all your internet connection settings in XP to ?I don’t know what the technical term would be - ?unused settings/factory settings?



etaf, if you are around, than you for the explanation of the graph how to. It worked.
TerryNet, thank you for you reply. I do not know if the problem I am having now can be cuased by RF interference, but I would guess that if I was disconencting due to such interfernce that the connection clock on the Wireless Network Connection Status Screen would start over? So, ?maybe not the cause?
etaf's Avatar
etaf   (Wayne) etaf is offline
Computer Specs
Moderator with 52,189 posts.
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Surrey, UK
20-Jan-2007, 06:24 PM #12
take the secruity off again and see if it disconnects - if it doesnot then its a secruity issue / cordless phone etc
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
20-Jan-2007, 07:07 PM #13
Okay Security Off.
Okay. Security is off. I will get back to this thread tomorrow and let you know what happens.
TerryNet's Avatar
Computer Specs
Moderator with 65,980 posts.
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Ottawa, IL
20-Jan-2007, 09:46 PM #14
If you are not really losing connection then I'll give big odds that you are browsing with IE. If that is the case and you don't like to click on "Try Again" use another browser; e.g., Firefox 2 or Netscape 8.1.2.
GingerSunshine's Avatar
GingerSunshine GingerSunshine is offline
Junior Member with 18 posts.
THREAD STARTER
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Experience: Between Beginner and Intermediate
21-Jan-2007, 04:43 PM #15
Lost and confused.
Okay. I removed security as you mentioned. Security has been off last night and today – now 3:25pm. Having no security has removed the problem, it seems. So what do you recommend I do now? WEP worked before we tried WPA, but now causes those messages, I guess? I am lost and confused. WEP and WPA both cause problems. Unsecured does not. What does all this mean?
As Seen On

BBC, Reader's Digest, PC Magazine, Today Show, Money Magazine
WELCOME TO TECH SUPPORT GUY!

Are you looking for the solution to your computer problem? Join our site today to ask your question. This site is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations.

If you're not already familiar with forums, watch our Welcome Guide to get started.


(clock)
THIS THREAD HAS EXPIRED.
Are you having the same problem? We have volunteers ready to answer your question, but first you'll have to join for free. Need help getting started? Check out our Welcome Guide.

Search Tech Support Guy

Find the solution to your
computer problem!




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools


WELCOME
You Are Using: Server ID
Trusted Website Back to the Top ↑