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Wireless network adapter options

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5 replies to this topic

#1 Scott1Roberts


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Posted 20 July 2017 - 09:37 PM

I am looking at an HP 15 notebook PC for a friend who has trouble connecting to the internet via wifi.

It is running Windows 8.1 64 bit. Other devices work on her internet, and this laptop only works on wifi networks when it is within a short distance to the router.

So it is definitely the laptop, and all the indications are the wireless network adapter.

I have updated the drivers for the Ralink RT3290 802.1 1bgn Wifi adapter, and the BIOS, and checked all the settings in the adapter properties which look ok as far as I can tell.

I have two questions.

a) Are there any more settings or software fixes I can check.

B) If the actual adapter is stuffed, how good are the USB wireless adapters, are they easy to install and does a $10 one do the trick.


Edited by hamluis, 23 July 2017 - 08:46 AM.
Moved from Win 7 to Networking - Hamluis.

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#2 saw101


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Posted 20 July 2017 - 10:14 PM

I use this on my desktop when I need to access my Wi-Fi network. Works quite well & inexpensive also.




See Newegg: https://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Order=BESTMATCH&Description=EDUP+Wifi+Adapter+Nano+Wireless+Usb&N=-1&isNodeId=1



a) Are there any more settings or software fixes I can check.

B) If the actual adapter is stuffed, how good are the USB wireless adapters, are they easy to install and does a $10 one do the trick.




As to other settings to check....Standby for other replies.

I never make the same mistake twice....I always make it 5 or 6 times just to be sure!

#3 mightywiz


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Posted 21 July 2017 - 12:56 PM

might pull the cover plate off and check to see if an antenna wire has came detached from the wireless board.

#4 arlattimor


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Posted 23 July 2017 - 08:19 AM

That may not be your problem. It is possible you are receiving channel bleed for another wireless network in your area on the same radio freq. Especially if you are running on a 2.4 ghz Wireless Network. I would suggest you log into your router and find what radio freq it is on.


Then do a site survey and see how many wifi networks in your area are on the same freq. You can download a wifi analyzer from here https://www.acrylicwifi.com/en/wlan-software/wifi-analyzer-acrylic-professional/download-wifi-analyzer-windows/  There are 11 radio channels for 2.4ghz networks. But the main channels that wifi routers default to are 1, 6, and 11. Use the wifi analyzer to find the channels that is least congested or used between 1, 6, and 11.

A. Lattimore

CCNA, CWNA, MCITP, MCSA, MCT, MCP, Security+, Server+, Linux+, Network+, A+, CNST

Network Security Engineer


#5 britechguy


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Posted 23 July 2017 - 10:17 AM

Yes, the $10 or less usb dongle wireless adapters work just fine.  I've been using the micro style for years now on an old desktop that is one floor down and half the house over from my modem-router (it had no built-in wireless) and another on an older laptop that came with Wireless G but where I wanted Wireless N.


If the modem-router I have were Wireless AC I'd definitely be looking in to USB micro Wireless AC adapters for my machines rather than tearing them apart to replace the existing cards.  I'm actually rather surprised that it has not become convention over the years to have a dedicated USB port that would allow these things to be inserted and not protrude at all as the default method of providing WiFi.  It's a simple matter to replace them if something were to go wrong, and I haven't had that happen.

Brian  AKA  Bri the Tech Guy (website in my user profile) - Windows 10 Home, 64-Bit, Version 1803, Build 17134 

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    ~ Ruth Marcus,  November 10, 2017, in Washington Post article, Bannon is right: It’s no coincidence The Post broke the Moore story






#6 dc3


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Posted 23 July 2017 - 10:57 AM

What exactly is a "short distance".  Can the notebook connect from the same distance as the other devices?


If the wifi adapter suggested doesn't resolve this because the distance it too great another option would be to use a range extender.  This device can be placed between the dead area and the router to increase the signal strength.  I installed a Netgear N300 wifi range extender in a friends mobile home to resolve a similar problem.  As I recall this cost ~$32.00.

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