Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Wireless Woes

I am exhausted today! Last night we had dinner with Brad and Anya and then got started on their wireless network. The router wasn't much trouble, as I had predicted, but it was Linksys's newer model which now has the stupid "wizard" for setup which irks me to no end. Meant to make setup "easier" on those who have never done it before, it's like a freaking hedge maze for someone who already has. FRUSTRATING.

Anyway, Of course I had the issue with no internet connectivity until I called Insight and asked them to recognize the router. This is the third network I have setup and on each one, the cable company has to recognize your router before it works. And I have done one of them on MCHSI and it was the same deal. So when I called Insight last night I got a lady who said "yes, we do have to recognize your router" and I got transferred to a broadband tech support guy. I waited for almost 20 minutes on hold. Then when I got to him I almost hung up on him. Jeez. Anyway he said "we don't have to do that anymore. We don't recognize Routers" and he said "But I can look at it." So he had me turn off the router. He looked at the modem. He had me turn back on the router. Then it started "magikally wunderfully werking" and I had already rebooted the router twice so I knew that it wasn't the reboot that fixed it but whatever he did on his end. But "they don't need to recognize routers anymore."

So once the network was all working, I was on wirelessly with my laptop, and Anya's was giving us a hard time. She had gotten a linksys card and no matter what we did, it was not connecting, or it would connect and then the second you would close the wireless configuration window, it would disconnect. I convinced Evan to call Linksys support. We got a woman who wanted him to change the settings on the router. She wanted everything reset to defaults (SSID, channel, MAC filter, Router IP Address, Enabled Broadcasting, no WEP key.) That's when I got on the phone and asked her why she wanted to change them. She said "who setup this network?" and I said "I did" and she said "It's very secure. You are technically inclined?" and I said "Yes" and she said "A professional?" and I said "Yes" and she said "You don't want the defaults?" and I said "no." and I explained that I know the wireless network is fine because I have another wireless laptop already connected and working fine.

She eventually told Evan that we needed to install firmware on the card. First, I thought "the damn thing just came out of the box and it already needs a firmware upgrade?" and then I thought that I had never heard of a card having firmware. It just didn't make sense. A router, okay. But a card? So once I got online.... yeah, no firmware upgrades for cards. So we called back with our case number and the guy we got next was very difficult to understand. He wanted to go through all the same steps. I finally got through to him that there was NOTHING WRONG WITH THE WIRELESS NETWORK. He did have me change the channel though. Which didn't make a difference. He told me I needed to be "closer to the router" to which I thought "bullshit" and Evan Said "That's Fucking Bullshit." Didn't matter, it didn't work.

He had me uninstall and reinstall the card AGAIN and then install just the card drivers and not the linksys software. I had already tried configuring in windows and not Linksys, which gave us better results, but it wasn't working. The laptop has two PCMIA card slots and we tried both. To no avail. Eventually I had the guy admit that there could be a problem with the card and he told us to exchange it. I personally would rather see a Cisco card than a linksys card, even though I tell myself it shouldn't matter since Linksys is owned by Cisco now. I was doing ipconfig commands and it was telling me that the wireless device was disconnected, so it wasn't even grabbing an IP. We even tried static IP. Nothing.

So we didn't get home till about 1am.... which was exhausting. But we will get a few days break before we have to try again, with another card. Linksys wanted us to try the card in another laptop, which I can understand. But I really don't want the damn thing in my laptop, because it works fine with it's built in wireless and I don't want to screw that up and have it start getting confused with another card.

I don't know. Except I need a Nap!


Michelle said...

Wow, that's a lot of technical jibber jabber to me! I just know how to use them - most of the time! Hope you got some much needed rest and good luck when the new card arrives.

Bianca Roland said...

I love technology, but sometimes it's a real pain in the ass.

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