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"Windows is unable to connect to the wireless network."


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9 replies to this topic

#1 Joe American

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 05:44 PM

"... The network may no longer be in range. Please refresh the list of available networks and try again."

 

I was given an old pc (Dell Optiplex 320) which had been used where I work. I did not reformat, but reinstalled XP Pro from the supplied Dell reinstallation disc. I have installed drivers for the graphics card and for the wireless adapter. I am unable to connect wirelessly at home or at work. I do have the network key for the workplace router, but can't get to the point where I need to enter it. I tried to connect to my smartphone's wifi hotspot, to no avail. I'm sure this is a simple fix, however my skills are spotty at best.


Edited by Joe American, 15 March 2014 - 01:05 PM.


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#2 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 07:06 PM

If these are the specs for the computer you have :-  http://www.northwoodcomputer.com/Flyers/opti_320techspecs.pdf

 

Then, as built by Dell, it doesn't contain a wireless card !  It is of course always possible that one was fitted later. If you are certain you (1) have a wireless card, (2) have identified it correctly, and (3) have managed to find and install the drivers for it, the possibility remains that the card may be faulty. Experience shows that wireless cards can fail, and in some very non-obvious ways !

 

It might be worth your while trying a USB wi-fi dongle if only to check that the problem is or is not with your card. I have used one in my own computer since the day we went wireless - see picture - and is mounted in a magnetic mounted clip as far forward on the casing as it will go with a short extension cable to the back panel.

 

http://imageshack.com/a/img577/9316/v3k4.jpg

 

If you cannot borrow one, they are not expensive. That is why I bought one in the first place, it was cheaper than an internal card. But it will tell you if a wi-fi signal is reaching your computer and whether or not you can connect. If you can connect with a dongle, then your wireless card is probably deceased.

 

Chris Cosgrove



#3 NickAu

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 07:55 PM

 

If you cannot borrow one, they are not expensive

 

Nano USB 802.11n WiFi N Wireless Adapter Mini Network Dongle For PC Laptop

 

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Nano-USB-802-11n-WiFi-N-Wireless-Adapter-Mini-Network-Dongle-For-PC-Laptop-/321201924435?pt=AU_Components&hash=item4ac9206953


Edited by NickAu1, 14 March 2014 - 07:56 PM.


#4 Joe American

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 09:07 AM

I am using a wireless dongle, a netgear wna3100. I downloaded and installed the drivers on a wired connection. The router shows up on network connections, but the same message pops up anytime I click connect.

 

Edit:

I have tried the dongle on a different pc, and it works.


Edited by Joe American, 15 March 2014 - 10:08 AM.


#5 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 06:13 PM

There is a reason for asking posters to give brief details of their equipment when they post, if you had mentioned Netgear WNA3100 . . .  However.

 

"... The network may no longer be in range. Please refresh the list of available networks and try again."

This message normally only appears when an adapter is trying to connect to a router to which it has previously been connected. Which in turn implies (1) it can connect to your router, but (2) there isn't enough signal for it to lock on.

 

Looking at the specs for the 3100, it says 'small / medium' house, suggesting that it requires a reasonably good signal. Distance is not the only factor. Structural materials and the position of the dongle are also important. Since you probably haven't changed the structure of the building you live in, this leaves the position of the dongle relative to the router. If the dongle is mounted in one of the rear USB slots and the back of the computer is up against a wall you are creating a very difficult signal path. I had this problem, and my photo in post #2 shows how I resolved it.

 

As a test, you could try either moving the router closer to the computer or, I know it's a pain, temporarily move the computer closer to the router and see what happens.

 

And you say you downloaded the drivers. Since you have posted in the XP forum, presumably you are running XP. Did you make sure you got the XP drivers ?  I know for a fact that the Netgear XP drivers do not work in Win 7, so the reverse is probably true also.

 

Chris Cosgrove



#6 Joe American

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 10:10 PM

I did install xp drivers, and the dongle is 10 feet away from the router. This pc has never connected wirelessly  to my home router, and was connected via ethernet cable at work.

Apologies for not including the dongle in my first post, the aggravation coupled with the bourbon impaired my judgement.


Edited by Joe American, 15 March 2014 - 10:12 PM.


#7 synergy513

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 02:12 PM

i ran into this scenario . it is the result of using multiple connection types (lan cable, wireless etc.) you have to prioritize your wireless connection. it goes like this.

 

  after the attempted wireless connect procedure that is non-productive.....

 

            press windows key (may be between the ctrl and alt key) + r key ----  type in cmd...

 

  a window pops up....type in ipconfig /release   then type in ipconfig /renew    then type netsh int reset all. then restart the PC

 

this worked for me, but i have to use it after every time i connect with a lan cable, and then want to connect with the wireless afterwords


Moore's Law : 4d Graph in Progress


#8 Joe American

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 08:21 PM

Well, synergy, that seems to have done the trick. I can connect at home, will try at work tomorrow.

Thanks for your help!



#9 synergy513

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 01:05 AM

excellent


Moore's Law : 4d Graph in Progress


#10 Joe American

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 01:06 PM

Thanks again, the wireless connection problem is fixed.

Unfortunately, the machine is lacking so many drivers and/or patches, it's taking hours to get it up to snuff.

 

Still, your help was invaluable!

 

Mods, close the thread at your convenience.






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