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Topic # 17422 26-Nov-2007 18:21
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Hi

Thought I'd post about this issue and see if anyone can help.

I have a private internal network set up via my Linksys WRT54GS (running official firmware).
My partner has an Acer Travelmate Laptop with Wireless 802.11b/g
The signal strength for my wireless is one bar below the top, sometimes all bars are lit up.

Her laptop will work fine for internet most times, but other times no traffic will pass. Disabling the wi-fi then re-enabling seems to bring it back.  Laptop is set with a static internal network IP.

Wireless mode on router is set to 'mixed'
Security Mode: WPA Personal
WPA Algorithms: TKIP
Group Key Renewel: 3600 seconds

I have enabled MAC filtering also, so only her laptop can connect to the wireless network.
I've tried changing to different wireless channels on the router, but this does not seem to make any difference.

It doesn't appear to be a internet issue, as when it happens on her laptop, my PC connected via ethernet to the router still has internet and I can surf sites etc.

Just wondering if I've set up something wrong someplace, or if there is a known issue with Acer laptops?
I have noticed here (and at her previous house with a different wireles router) that the 'You are now connected to <network name>' will pop up for no reason (perhaps related?).








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  Reply # 97003 26-Nov-2007 20:22
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Have you tried looking for an updated WiFi chipset driver or removing and reinstalling the existing driver?

It seems a bit of a whierd issue.



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  Reply # 97008 26-Nov-2007 20:46
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Good idea. I'll check the acer website and see if there's any update.




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  Reply # 97019 26-Nov-2007 21:46
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ZollyMonsta: Just wondering if I've set up something wrong someplace, or if there is a known issue with Acer laptops?

My wife and I both have Acer TravelMate laptops and we also have the same Linksys Router as you (WRT54G).

Neither of us experience any issues at all with WiFi connections, but I have one thing set up differently:

Both of our laptops use DHCP-assigned IP addresses.  We have 2 different houses, so that is the main reason I set it up this way.

I don't know whether changing to DHCP on your laptops will make any difference, but it's worth a try.  Most wireless-equipped laptops use DHCP in my experience because they can be used on many different networks with different addressing schemes and DHCP takes care of all that together with setting up the correct Gateway Address, DNS server addresses etc.  I would recommend using DHCP for a laptop unless you have some special reason for doing otherwise.



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  Reply # 97040 26-Nov-2007 23:18
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Hi,

Originally I had the laptop set up to obtain an IP via DHCP, but had the same issue.  I changed it to a static IP, but it appears to have made no difference.  I'll take a look at the Acer website tommorow and see if there's any driver updates I can apply to the laptop.

Cheers...




Check out my LPFM Radio Station at www.thecheese.co.nz cool


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  Reply # 97138 27-Nov-2007 13:58
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Is there a reason you require a MIXED B\G environment? If not I would set your network to run 'G' only! In my opinion it speeds up your network. Also you could try another Channel and see if the laptop still has issues I like 11 for my WRT54g.

Last thing I can think of is if you use the WZC Windows Wireless Zero Configuration, you could use the software you got with your adapter instead and see if that makes a difference.

Hope this helps. Keep us upto date!



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  Reply # 97223 27-Nov-2007 19:55
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stenknz: Is there a reason you require a MIXED B\G environment? If not I would set your network to run 'G' only! In my opinion it speeds up your network. Also you could try another Channel and see if the laptop still has issues I like 11 for my WRT54g.

Last thing I can think of is if you use the WZC Windows Wireless Zero Configuration, you could use the software you got with your adapter instead and see if that makes a difference.

Hope this helps. Keep us upto date!


Ok, I found a driver on the Acer website, seems to be correct. Now have a signal level graph and stats in the taskbar too (didn't before, perhaps was using a Windows driver). Set network to G only. Set static IP. Speed is bouncing between 36mbps, 48mbps and 56mbps. Seems to be working ok. What is the best security for wireless? Currently under testing it's set to WEP 64bits and locked down to the MAC of the laptop wireless adapter.

Cheers,
Grant

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  Reply # 97228 27-Nov-2007 20:13
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ZollyMonsta:
Ok, I found a driver on the Acer website, seems to be correct. Now have a signal level graph and stats in the taskbar too (didn't before, perhaps was using a Windows driver). Set network to G only. Set static IP. Speed is bouncing between 36mbps, 48mbps and 56mbps. Seems to be working ok. What is the best security for wireless? Currently under testing it's set to WEP 64bits and locked down to the MAC of the laptop wireless adapter.

Cheers,
Grant


WPA or WPA2. WEP is a waste of time as it's been cracked and MAC filtering is as well as spoofing a MAC is a simple exploit.



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  Reply # 97231 27-Nov-2007 20:25
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ok... changed to WPA2 (Personal).  On this setting the signal graph has 54mbps.. but then every 5 seconds or so the signal drops off, changing to 1mbps... then goes back to 54mbps.

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  Reply # 97234 27-Nov-2007 20:32
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What version WRT54GS do you have? You could always try some better 3rd party firmware such as Sveasoft Talisman or DD-WRT if you have a model that can be flashed with 3rd party firmware.



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  Reply # 97235 27-Nov-2007 20:34
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sbiddle: What version WRT54GS do you have? You could always try some better 3rd party firmware such as Sveasoft Talisman or DD-WRT if you have a model that can be flashed with 3rd party firmware.


Version 1.1.  Would prefer not to load 'other' firmware on it, as don't wish to 'brick' the router accidentally. :)
My radio streams are hanging off the router.




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  Reply # 97255 27-Nov-2007 21:40
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ZollyMonsta: Version 1.1.  Would prefer not to load 'other' firmware on it, as don't wish to 'brick' the router accidentally. :)  My radio streams are hanging off the router.

I agree, I don't want to mess with the software in my router either as the standard Linksys software is perfectly fine so far as I am concerned.

As Sbiddle has pointed out, it is easy to spoof MAC addresses but in practice how often does this happen in your average neighbourhood?

I guess it would be a different matter if you live in an apartment near a whole lot of Computer Science students Yell but in our suburban neighbourhood, our router has never been broken into, nor our bandwidth stolen.  I KNOW, because I look at the logs every so often...

We just use MAC filtering and NO encryption at all, as it slows the system down for PC to PC file transfers.  This is the system we have been using for at least 5 years, and if it ain't broke I don't believe in fixing it, no matter what the purists say Tongue out



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  Reply # 97267 27-Nov-2007 22:49
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Is it possible to downgrade the current firmware, to a previous version?
Currently I'm running 4.71.1
Wondering wether there is some sort of issue with this version. Previously seemed fine.
I note there is a newer firmware now. 4.71.3  but can't see any release notes on this version.

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  Reply # 97269 27-Nov-2007 23:01
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ZollyMonsta: Is it possible to downgrade the current firmware, to a previous version?

Maybe there is some place on the web that has old versions of Linksys firmware, I don't know, you would have to hunt around.  Another possibility is to check your original CD that came with the device.  Maybe it has the original software on it.

It's interesting that your problems got worse after enabling WPA security.  I would suggest disabling all security except MAC filtering (for reasons explained above) and try again.

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  Reply # 97298 28-Nov-2007 08:20
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@ZollyMonsta

I would not disable your encryption at all. If you believe the wireless router is at fault, I would look for a replacement, maybe it is still under warranty?
MAC filtering is not a substitute for encryption.

Not sure if you looked at changing the channel, as this can resolve a lot of substandard connection issues. There could be a lot of noise in your area that's affecting your signal to your AP!? Have you tried moving your AP?



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  Reply # 97467 29-Nov-2007 07:43
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No, the router is 2 or 3 years old.  Ok, seemed to have fixed it. Oddly. Uninstalled the wireless adapter. Did a windows update, nothing. So  let windows do the driver again (which I'd done previously).  Changed to 'b' only. WPA. Still locked to MAC address also.  I had the laptop sitting right here (by the router) for a good 40 mins and the signal level remained strong and steady (though the laptop is staying at 11mbps.. but that's ok).  So did all the stuff I'd done before which didn't work. odd :)
Something the laptop was doing which disappeared after re-installing the same drivers again was remove 'on demand' which was listed under 'View Wireless Networks' for my network. Odd.  Anyone know what 'On Demand' means?

Anyway, seems to be reliable again.  I blame the pixies!




Check out my LPFM Radio Station at www.thecheese.co.nz cool


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