No Network Connections

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boweasel

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Looking at a Dell Inspirion 2500 laptop running Home Edition 2002, SP2.
It will not connect to the internet through my (working) DSL modem:
  • Device Manager does not show even the spot for Network Adapters - it goes right from Monitors to PCMCIA adapters. And nothing on the page is flagged either with a yellow question mark or an 'X',

  • The Network Connections page of the control panel has but one heading -'Incoming' - nothing else - no LAN or High-Speed Internet, no Wizard, just 'Incoming', which says 'no clients connected'
I have NO idea what to do.... A system restore to several months ago failed to make any difference. The only think I was able to find out is that she suspects her (ex)boyfriend might have done something malicious to her laptop before leaving.


What should I be trying (other than a reinstall of Windows)?
 

Triple6

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Have you checked the BIOS, F2 I believe at boot up, to see if the Network card is enabled in the BIOS?
 

boweasel

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Have you checked the BIOS, F2 I believe at boot up, to see if the Network card is enabled in the BIOS?
Although I can certainly get into the Phoenix BIOS Setup Utility with F2, there is nothing I can see on any of the options - Main, System Devices, Security and Boot that display anything about a Network Card.

Also I have gone to the Dell page, displayed all the recommended for the Inspirion 2500, downloaded them to a flash drive, and attempted to install them.
 

Triple6

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Odd, even most Dell laptops have an option to enable/disable some of the devices in the BIOS. Nothing under System Devices for the network or another sub category that might have it?
 

boweasel

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Odd, even most Dell laptops have an option to enable/disable some of the devices in the BIOS. Nothing under System Devices for the network or another sub category that might have it?
Under System Devices I have

Ide Controller
Internal Touchpad
Legacy USB Support
Serial port
* Base I/O address
* Interrupt
Parallel port
* Mode
* Base I/O address
* Interrupt
* DMA channel

all of which have options to enable, disable, customize, etc., but no sub-menus, and nothing at all about the Network card.

Curiously, as I continued to furiously download drivers I did, at one time, get the Network Adapter to show up in Device Manager (albeit with a yellow ?), but as a blue-tooth device.

Obviously I have no idea where to find the proper Chipset or Network Adapter drivers. Certainly not at Dell....
 
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Enter the service tag at Dell to see the original configuration and the driver download page.
 

boweasel

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Enter the service tag at Dell to see the original configuration and the driver download page.
The very first thing I did - the service tag is17LBB11. If anyone else can see what the Chipset or Network Adapter drivers are from what I get back from that inquiry, I'd be most grateful...
 
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Are you sure that the wireless on your computer has a driver? Also are you sure that the router's? wireless network is being broadcast on any wireless devices?
 

boweasel

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Are you sure that the wireless on your computer has a driver? Also are you sure that the router's? wireless network is being broadcast on any wireless devices?
Okay here's the history... This friend of mine has a laptop (the Dell Inspiron 2500) that was connected wirelessly to a Belkin router (which was also connected to her then boyfriend's desktop). The laptop was working perfectly. Then the boyfriend splits, taking his desktop and router with him, but leaving her the modem. She uses the ethernet cable to connect to the modem, but she can't connect to the internet. That's when she asked me to look at it.

So, since the laptop is not being used wirelessly, and there is no router, her laptop should work just like my desktop...

But of course it does not.

I ran the Belarc Advisor computer profile summary on both PCs, and, while mine shows an Agere Systems PCI-SV92EX Soft Modem and an
NVIDIA nForce 10/100/1000 Mbps Networking Controller and Gateway addresses and Dhcp Server addresses and Networking Dns Server addresses, etc, etc, her Dell shows a Lucent Win Modem and a Network Card MAC Address of all zeroes....

I don't know what that means exactly, but I assume it ain't good.

I apologize for how stupid this question sounds, but is this machine somehow incapable of running with an ethernet cable connected to a modem?
 

boweasel

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Check out the 3 Com drivers under "Communications".
I downloaded everything under 'Communication' and I finally got Network Adapter to show up in the Device Manager (with something called Microsoft Loopback Adapter???), and the LAN or High-Speed Internet icon is back under Netword Connections.

However it reads 'Limited or no connectivity. You might not be able to access the internet or some network resources. The problem occurred because the network did not assign a network address to the computer.' The button to Repair the connection failed because the system could not renew my IP address.

So I'm closer, but I still cannot connect.
 
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First, make sure your Internet connection is using the 3 Com adapter, not the loopback, which you don't need.
Use the network wizard, or a setup CD you might have to set up your DSL connection. You may need to reset the modem. It might be easier to call the ISP for help.
Post ipconfig if you continue to have problems.
 

boweasel

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First, make sure your Internet connection is using the 3 Com adapter, not the loopback, which you don't need.
Use the network wizard, or a setup CD you might have to set up your DSL connection. You may need to reset the modem. It might be easier to call the ISP for help.
Post ipconfig if you continue to have problems.
I don't know where the loopback came from.
After I copied all six of the communications drivers for the Inspiron 2500 from the Dell site to a flash drive, I plugged the flash drive into the laptop, and opened the proper folder. There were 4 self-extracting modules which I clicked on and which then created new folders on the laptop. The other two modules were zip files, which I extracted to the same directory on the laptop.

I restarted the laptop, went to Device Manager and there was Network Adapter, with this loopback adapter.

After your response, I went into the Add hardware wizard and let it search. It found nothing. So I did the thing where it displays a list of the hardware already installed on the PC. No 3Com adapters. So I went to the bottom of the list and selected Add a new hardware device. I did the search for and install automatically, which found nothing. So I went back and clicked Install the hardware manually from a list, selected Network adapter device, clicked next, saw the Microsoft loopback adapter, clicked on Have disk, and pointed the wizard to the folders on the laptop where I had extracted the flash drive files.

To mercifully make a very long story a bit shorter the Add hardware Wizard now displays three 3Com 10/100 Mini PC Ethernet Adapters, the last two ending with #2, and #3. All of them have yellow exclamation points, and when I select them, they will not start.

I have 4 adapters listed now in device manager under Network Adapters - the loopback and the three 3Com devices. Once again, the 3Com devices have yellow exclamation points. None of them will start.

On the laptop, if I type in Ipconfig I get
  • Connection-specific DNS Suffix :
  • Autoconfiguration IP Address : 169.254.25.129
  • Subnet Mask : 255.255.0.0
  • Default Gateway :
 

boweasel

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As an addendum, as soon as I deleted the Microsoft Loopback Adapter from my Device Manager, my icon for LAN or High-Speed Internet disappeared from Network Connections
 
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I noticed in the Dell list that they also had drivers for PCMCIA and USB adapters.
Does this thing actually have an ethernet port? If so, the only etnernet hardware they show is the 3 Com.
 
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