Networking(new at this)help needed

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Thread Starter
Dec 27, 2003
Hi there,

My husband got a linksys card for his laptop. We don't have wireless in the house but he was told that he would be able to pick up signals when he's out on the road(he's a truckdriver) at truckstops, I hear Starbucks and stuff like that. Anyway, we do pick up a signal in my house and when I try to connect, I have to enter a WEP, I enter it in and a 'paraphrase' auto enters. (Gosh, I hope I'm making sense) I hit connect and it works. I get the two computers in the bottom right hand side and it says CONGRATULATIONS. So I hit the 'E' on the desktop and it doesn't work??? What am I doing wrong? Do I have to have SBC, AOL or some provider installed on the computer. If so, I have SBC on my main computer but how would I get it into his. I have the disk but it is for dsl and it doesn't establish a dsl connection? I'd like to think that I'm somehow computer literate but I'm stumped. I hope I explained this well enough. I will answer to the best of my ability.

Jul 27, 2005
Troubleshooting the current wireless network it picks up:
Simply ping the device. How to do this: Go to Start -> Run. Then type in "command" or "cmd" (one of these should open up a window with a black background and white text). Then type ping . If it comes back with a response of a ping time, then your connection works. If you get Request Timed Out, that means that the person you are connected to may not necessarily be connected to the internet among other things. Personally, if you have a home connection, you shouldn't be mooching off your neighbors. My guess is that you're picking up a network connection but it's so shady (in other words, you're so far away from the wireless device), it goes in and out and is too unstable. So, forget about this option.

Your option for your home connection:
My guess would be that you have a DSL modem that is connected to the phone line and on the other side, you're connected to your computer through an ethernet port. If you are, you can go out and buy a wireless router for about $20 after rebates from Bestbuy or another retailer (I purchased my DI-524 for $20 after rebates from Best Buy..and yes, I did get & cash my checks with no problems). When you speak of having software, you shouldn't need any software for your connection. So, your solution would be to buy a wireless router, hook up your DSL modem directly to the wireless router (in your WAN port) and then plug your wired computer into port 1 on the router. Then, login to the router and configure it according to the instructions. Once you do that and set up a wireless network on your router, you'll be able to access the internet and the other computer through your home network.

Quick Breakdown:
1. Check to see if your DSL modem has an ethernet cord connecting to your computer (looks like a phone connector but larger).
2. If step one is true, you can go out and buy a wireless router (Such as the DI-524).
3. Configure the router by connecting your computer's ethernet card to a port on the wireless router and logging into the router (usually: or and username: admin with no password, or no username and pw: admin OR both username and password admin...but consult your manual for the actual username and password).
4. After configuring the router and making sure your DSL modem's ethernet cable is connected to the WAN port, check to make sure the internet works on your computer.
5. Then, check the laptop and connect to the network you set up on the router. Also check to see if the internet works on it or not.

Hopefully this'll help you. If you have any more questions, reply or contact me directly (my contact information is in my signature).
Aug 1, 2003
Do any other internet applications work, like Outlook (Express), messengers, or anything else?

Do you know where you are connecting?


Mar 23, 2005
Shari, it sounds like your attempt to intrude on somebody else's wireless network was unsuccessful--in other words your WEP guess was incorrect.

What IP address are you getting. For determining IP address see above post or go into Network Connections - click on the wireless connection, and note the Details section in the left pane (I'm assuming Windows XP).

If the IP address is 169.254.x.y it means that your WEP guess was wrong, thus the laptop could not communicate with the Dhcp server, and assigned itself an APIPA.

It would be good for you to go somewhere that offers free wireless service and try that (either it will not be encrypted or they will give you the key). Many libraries, Panera Bread restaurants, some highway rest stops and other places offer such. My first wireless test was at a Panera Bread.

Here is one site that may help you find a free spot:
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