Solved: WEP security with wired network printer on wireless network

Status
This thread has been Locked and is not open to further replies. Please start a New Thread if you're having a similar issue. View our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
I am trying to add a new network-ready printer (Brother MFC-7820N) to my existing wireless network. The printer is connected to a LAN port on the back of a wireless router.

The pre-existing wireless network consists of a Linksys BEFW11S4 wireless router, a wired Windows XP Home desktop and a wireless Windows XP Home laptop. The network has MAC address filtering and WEP security enabled.

I turned off both MAC and WEP security when installing the printer, and the wired desktop was able to detect the printer after going through "add network printer".

I got the printer's MAC address from the printer test page and added that to the router and turned the MAC filtering back on, and still ok: I was able to detect the printer from the wired desktop and print.

I then turned on the WEP security, and suddenly the wired desktop no longer detects the printer (tried pinging printer's IP address). If I turn off WEP, the desktop again recognizes the printer.

I'm not sure why WEP is affecting communication between two components that are both wired into the router. I haven't even tried to get the wireless laptop to communicate with the printer yet, since I can't even get the wired desktop fully working first. I don't want to disable WEP security, so that is not an option. Brother support says its an issue with the router. Is there some setting I need to change on the router? Alternatively, I think if I got a wireless print server and entered the WEP key into the print server it would work, but then there was no point in getting a network-ready printer in the first place, I could have just kept my old non-network printer. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.
 

tomdkat

Retired Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 6, 2006
Messages
7,148
That does sound like a router issue. Have you upgraded the firmware in the router?

Peace...
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
No, I haven't had any issues for the 3-4 yrs I've had the router so I didn't want to fiddle with anything. I'm not very savvy on how to do a firmware upgrade. Is it just a matter of going to the website and downloading updates? Do I save to a file, disconnect everthing except the wired desktop, and then run the upgrade? Or can I upgrade directly online? Thanks for your help..
 

tomdkat

Retired Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 6, 2006
Messages
7,148
You should be able to upgrade the firmware using a link in the router's interface. Before attempting that, give others a chance to reply to see if they have other ideas.

I'm suggesting doing a firmware update in the event the current firmware has a bug causing this problem that has possibly been fixed.

Peace...
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
Thank you. I'll wait for any other suggestions. It does seem my firmware is two versions old, so an upgrade may be something I should eventually do anyway.
 

JohnWill

Retired Moderator
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
106,429
Quite frankly, unless some of your devices don't support WPA, I'd do the following.

Upgrade the router to the latest firmware.
Lose MAC filtering.
Use WPA with a strong random key of numbers and letters (20 characters or more).

This will give you MUCH better security.
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
Thanks for your suggestions. Upgrading the router firmware did the trick! I agree with the suggestion to use WPA instead of WEP, unfortunately there is an old computer in the basement with Windows ME that is also on the wireless network (I almost forgot I had it) and it doesn't support WPA. If we ever decide to remove it from the network, I'll definitely change to WPA. Thanks again!
 

JohnWill

Retired Moderator
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
106,429
You could pick up a wireless bridge to connect that computer. :)
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
Update: Well, after initial success in getting the printer recognized, and printing across the network (from both the desktop and the laptop), neither desktop nor laptop recognize the printer any longer. While digging in deeper, I am beginning to think this may be an issue with the network setup that I have.

While both computers can connect to the internet (via the router), neither one can ping the other (by ip address). They can only ping themselves and the router. I've never used the network for file sharing so I guess I didn't notice this before. I've done quite a bit of searching on this forum, and I think I have all the right settings in place, so I'm not sure why the components on the network can't ping each other.

The router has DHCP enabled (so I know the ip addresses are unique, and I check the value each time using ipconfig before trying to ping), the workgroup name is the default 'WORKGROUP' on both computers, and firewall is turned off on both computers.

The laptop had Norton Anti-virus, which I have uninstalled (though I can't seem to be able to remove something called Norton Live Update, it keeps saying something is still utilizing that program). The desktop has McAfee Security Center, but only the AntiVirus portion is installed (i.e. Personal FireWall is not installed). I do have VPN software installed on both the desktop and laptop that I use to connect to work - perhaps that is causing the issue? I tried swapping out the router with a friend's, so I no longer believe that it is the issue.

Is there anything else I'm missing?
 

tomdkat

Retired Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 6, 2006
Messages
7,148
In your first post, you indicated you had two machines running Windows XP Home Edition in your network and later on you reveal a third machine running Windows ME.

So, please list ALL of the systems in your network, which operating systems they are running (and which versions and service pack levels), and how they connect to your network. If all of the systems are running Windows, please list the security software (firewall, anti-virus, etc) installed and running on each system. In the case of Windows XP systems, if SP2 or later is installed please go to the security center and confirm how many firewalls and which firewall (if any) is configured.

Peace...
 

tomdkat

Retired Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 6, 2006
Messages
7,148
In your first post, you indicated you had two machines running Windows XP Home Edition in your network and later on you reveal a third machine running Windows ME.

So, please list ALL of the systems in your network, which operating systems they are running (and which versions and service pack levels), and how they connect to your network. If all of the systems are running Windows, please list the security software (firewall, anti-virus, etc) installed and running on each system. In the case of Windows XP systems, if SP2 or later is installed please go to the security center and confirm how many firewalls and which firewall (if any) is configured.

Peace...
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
Sorry for the confusion, these are the PCs on the network:

Wireless router: Linksys BEFW11S4 (latest firmware v.1.52.02)

Desktop (wired to LAN port on router): Windows XP Home SP 1; McAfee Security Center, with only Anti-virus component installed (the other components: Personal Firewall Plus, Privacy Service and Spam Killer are NOT installed); McAfee VirusScan installed; Windows firewall is turned off

Laptop (wireless connection): Windows XP Home SP2; Norton Anit-virus which was just un-installed this weekend, however Norton Live Update could not be uninstalled so this component is still there; Webroot Spysweeper installed; Windows firewall turned off

Basement:
 

allysb

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 19, 2008
Messages
8
Basement (wireless connection via Linksys Wireless-B USB Adapter v2.8): Windows ME 4.90.3000; Webroot Spysweeper installed
 

tomdkat

Retired Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 6, 2006
Messages
7,148
Coolio. Can you boot each of the Windows XP machines in safe mode w/ networking and see if they can ping each other?

Peace...
 
Status
This thread has been Locked and is not open to further replies. Please start a New Thread if you're having a similar issue. View our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

As Seen On
As Seen On...

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.

Join over 807,865 other people just like you!

Latest posts

Staff online

Top