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Weird Wireless


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#1 Andrew

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Posted 25 June 2006 - 01:27 AM

At home, I connect to the internet via a free wireless hotspot provided by the city. Ordinarily, it works pretty good and I have had few complaints (hey, it's free).

A few days ago, I connected to the hotspot but was unable to access any web pages (got the hated 404 error). What was really weird was that other internet based programs (such as Yahoo Messenger and Limewire) were able to access the internet successfully. I fugured it was some sort of malicious software that had infected internet explorer. So, I ran a full virus scan with Avast! Home Edition and a full spyware scan with Adaware SE personal. Nothing! Perplexed, I ran system restore and restored my computer to a point about 1 week earlier to no avail. After tinkering with the wireless card's configuration and other stuff, it suddenly worked. I wasn't sure what I had done, but I was happy and gave myself credit for being smart.

The next evening I tried to connect again. This time, not only did IE not work, but neither did any other programs (with regard to the internet). Confused, I tried installing an old version of Netscape that I had laying around. After intalling it, Netscape was able to access the internet. I switched back over to IE and it was working fine now as were all internet based programs. I was happy again.

The next evening when I tried to connect, much the same happened as the previous night except now Netscape wouldn't connect. I tinkered around witht he wireless configuration and again it suddenly worked again.

This pattern continued for the next few nights until I got really pissed and wiped the hard drive and installed Windows XP Pro SP2 (it had been running XP Home SP2). This had no effect.
I went to the public library and successfully connected to their wireless network. Because it works there, I'm thinking that the problem lies with the city's wireless accesspoint.

Now, this evening, I tried again and was able to access Google and a few other sites. Other sites (like bleepingcomputer.com) came up 404. I rebooted and now I can access more sites (like bleepingcomputer, obviously) but still there are some I cannot connect to.

What do you all think? Do I nedd to buy a new wireless card? Is the city at fault?

Specs:
Winbook N3
Intel Pentium III 1.19 GHz, 368 MB RAM
Windows XP Professional SP2
Linksys Wireless G WPC54G

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#2 Snapper

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Posted 26 June 2006 - 04:18 PM

well, i wouldnt point my fingers at my wireless card yet.since you reformatted, lol, (BTW, keep the legit version of windows on when you can, just a tip) i would start thinking ISP issues. since at another WIFI hotspot you have seamless net surfing. it sounds kinda sporatic. the city's hotspots, are they in a beta testing phase? have they gave any disclaimers of loss of service? somebody could be messing around with a firewall/proxy server setting, trying to make the public access safer for the more conservative group. this is a guess, as i dont know the skinny on your city's 802.11x access. if you still run into wireless issues regarding surfing, check out a local internet cafe, or library as you have to narrow it down to if it is just home or not. maybe call the ISP (internet service provider) or town's "net" department to find more info out.
sorry i couldnt be more help, the steps listed above would be some of the things i would try first, that way i have more information to make a decision about the issue. after all, we are in the information age!!! lol,
Dave

Edited by Snapper, 26 June 2006 - 04:19 PM.

Google...Google.....browse..read

#3 Andrew

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Posted 26 June 2006 - 04:37 PM

The city's wifi program is in its trial phase, with my neighborhood being the initial hotspot. So I suppose it could be considered in beta tesing.

As for conservative filtering, I doubt it. San Francisco isn't exactly the conservative mecca. :thumbsup: :flowers:

I have a feeling that if I wait, the problem will be corrected on the city's end. Thanks for the input!

#4 Klinkaroo

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Posted 27 June 2006 - 10:21 PM

I say give them a chance they are giving you free internet acess... when it works... I wish my city gave us all free internet... but hey that's what happens when you live in the back woods of Quebec... Gotta love the internet for keeping us connected :thumbsup:




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