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Posted: 11/2/2009 4:24:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/2/2009 4:37:23 PM EST by BakerMike]
Hello, arfcommers,

So, I had a WRT-54G, which I just replaced with a WRT-160N thinking it would fix the problem which I am about to tell you about, but to NO AVAIL.

So here it is: my router is upstairs, and I am almost always downstairs. The wireless network remains nominally connected, but I spontaneously (and frequently) lose the ability to connect to the internet(this is usually indicated by Meebo suddenly ceasing to send my messages and displaying [connection interrupted...] by all my logins). (ETA: my intel proset thing doesn't complain about losing the connection or anything, and it's not like I lose bars. Everything looks all green and rosy in my system tray, but I just suddenly can't do... internet... anymore. My connection also seems markedly slower than it ought to be, I'm on Cable, after all.)

About 90% of the time, I can recover by going to the router's web-management, and going to the Status page, and doing a DHCP Release and Renew. I have no idea why this should work, but it almost always does. 9% of the time, I have to go all the frig the way upstairs and restart the router by hand, by unplugging it and plugging it back in. The other 1% of the time it's my laptop puking the bed and reconnecting to the network or restarting the lappy fixes that.

This bullshit happens _constantly_, sometimes up to fifteen or twenty times in a night. I haven't played a computer game on my desktop in over a month because this connection BS is intolerable.

Help me, ARFCOM, you're my only hope (man I bet this shit doesn't happen to Carrie Fisher).

Link Posted: 11/2/2009 8:07:50 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/2/2009 8:09:15 PM EST by JeepAR15]
I might would start with Netstumbler, if your wireless nic is compatible. Use it to check how many APs near you are on the same wireless channel that you've assigned your AP/router to use.

Sounds like an interference/congestion/noise issue to me. I have had noise issues that would cause the problem you describe by cordless telephones, microwave ovens, ham radio, and even an old zenith console television.

Welcome to FCC Part 15 devices.
Link Posted: 11/3/2009 4:54:02 AM EST
Thanks for the advice, Jeep. I'll give Netstumbler a try this evening. We have a bunch of 2.4ghz wireless phones, so that might be part of the problem (we have one base, and like four little handset things all over the house, so if they do any kind of continuous communication, I bet that's noisy as hell). Maybe I can get my dad to invest in a handful of PCMCIA Cards for our laptops and a wireless-n NIC for my desktop, so we can run this new router at 5.0 ghz instead of 2.4 in g mode.
Link Posted: 11/3/2009 5:33:52 AM EST
I would start with the simple stuff first: connect your laptop directly to your cable modem via a wired connection and use it for a while to determine whether the problem is in your internet connection or in the 802.11 wireless connection inside your house. If you determine that it's the wireless connection, turn off every 2.4GHz device in the house except your laptop wi-fi card, and place your laptop on the same table as the router. Test it for a while. If it's still good, move progressively further away from the router and continue to test. If you get all the way back to your normal working area and you still don't see any problems, begin turning the 2.4GHz devices back on one at a time until you start seeing the problem again.
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