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Old December 27, 2007, 08:44 AM
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Default Network n00b help

Well the boxing day bug got me and I ended up buying a nice littel Acer laptop for the wife. While in the store I also bought a Lynksys wireless router as well to network the home pc with the laptop and provide internet access to both. I have had nothing but problems trying to get things working.

Here is a brief run down of what I have.

Home PC - Windows XP, DSL high speed (Bell Sympatico), Network adaptor built into mobo, Linksys wireless router directly plugged in.

Laptop - Windows Vista Ultimate (:help:) Linksys wireless router, built in wireless card.

I sucsessfully connected the modem to the router, ran my network cable from the router to the home pc and installed the router software. I was able to connect to the internet no problem and everything was fine. I then tried to get the laptop to conect to the router via wireless. At first it would see the router but not connect, it said I was not configured properly. After a lot of messing around I changed my settings to match, changed my workgroup name to match and finaly I was able to create a network connection to the home pc. However I can't connect to the internet from the laptop. I tried to install the sympatico software on the laptop but vista threw a fit and I could not complete the install.

So I have no clue what I'm doing at this point. Vista is tottaly new to me and I'm very tempted to turf it and install XP but I have no driver disks for this laptop which scares me. Do I need to install the sympatico software on my laptop? How do I do this if vista doesn't like the software? How do I set up the network properly? How do I stop myself from taking a hammer to the laptop to purge it of Vista? Any help would be greatly appreciated. I thought this was going to be easy and now it's a huge headache.
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Old December 27, 2007, 10:27 AM
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I have 5 rigs running Vista under a network, including 3 wireless setups. And Vista is not a problem. Have you tried connecting the laptop with a Lan wire first? That's what the manual tells you to do. Second you do not need to install the Sympatico software. Make sure that your SSID in the router settings matches the network connection that you created on your laptop. Also don't forget to activate the wifi antenna on your laptop.

If that doesn't work, give Linksys a call. Their Customer Support staff is good, I was quite surprised (I too had a hard time for the first install and had to call them).
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Old December 27, 2007, 10:27 AM
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Okay, I'm gonna be in with you on this one....A few days ago I got sick and tired of switching around my LAN cables so I figure...I go with a wireless router from Linksys. The story is just like you: Setting up a network is doable(hard), but getting internet access on any of the connected rigs??? NO CHANCE! Vista is supposed to be easy....well somebody show me the easy button!

And Matty D? Don't use the hammer just yet!
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Old December 27, 2007, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3.0charlie View Post
I have 5 rigs running Vista under a network, including 3 wireless setups. And Vista is not a problem. Have you tried connecting the laptop with a Lan wire first? That's what the manual tells you to do. Second you do not need to install the Sympatico software. Make sure that your SSID in the router settings matches the network connection that you created on your laptop. Also don't forget to activate the wifi antenna on your laptop.

If that doesn't work, give Linksys a call. Their Customer Support staff is good, I was quite surprised (I too had a hard time for the first install and had to call them).
Thanks Charlie, I will try all of the above. I did not connect the laptop directly to the router nor have I installed any router software on it yet. I think my problem is/was getting confused as to when to install what and when to create a new network connection. I may un-install everything and start new. The one problem I ran into that confused me was when installing the router software it asks me for info on my network. I said to myself "wtf, thats why I'm installing the router I need a network!" I'm assuming this is normal (not the talking to myself part) and that it is simply creating a network based on my input?

I'm searching and reading as much info as I can to re-do this tonight and hopefully get things on track.

Good luck Doc, I hope that things go smoother for you.
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Old December 27, 2007, 12:08 PM
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Do not use the software discs that come bundled with the router. Easy way to do it is:

1. Using a PC hardwired to the router, type 192.168.1.1 or in the address bar
2. should be greeted with a username/password prompt for the router config page
3. Username should be administrator & no password or admin and no password.
4. click wiresless tab and set your SSID and choose the encryption protocol you wish to use and create a password
5. Save settings
6. Laptop should detect wireless connection, enter credentials and you should be good to go. I have done this dozens of times on various linksys routers.
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Old December 27, 2007, 09:38 PM
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I agree totally; do not use the software dics. Create your own network instead, much easier.

1. 192.168.1.1 for Linksys (192.168.2.1 for Dlink)
2. same for both models of routers.
3. my linksys username was [blank], and the password was [admin].
4. Indeed set your SSID, but I would not use encryption yet.
5. Before changing pages, always save if changes were made; otherwise, they will be lost.
6. Go to start/control panel/network and sharing center
7. Click setup a connection or network. Choose Manual. Network Name is the SSID.
8. Once setup is complete, IE should work. Then start reading on the different types of encryptions (I have WPA-AES).
9. Once at ease with your setup, change the router setting of the SSID to prevent broadcast.
10. Also do not forget to change your router username and password! This is accessible in one of the router pages.

I hope that's it; Durka2's list helped me a lot.
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Old December 28, 2007, 08:36 AM
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Thanks for the detailed info. I did in fact use the disks last night (had not read your responces yet) and managed to easily get my laptop to connect and get the internet working. I did change the password for my network from admin but Im still using the SSID it came with. I will look at changing that as well as I don't want to give my neighbours a free ride.

I unfortunatelly bought the Linksys WRT54G not the GL and I have read that the G is going to be nothing but trouble. Luckily I can return it and I think I will, but now I'm wondering if I should go with an N router or not?
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Old December 28, 2007, 11:24 AM
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N is definitely better, go for it. You will have the full bandwidth of high-speed internet and will be future-proof. As for the WRT54G, that's the one I have for the last 2 years, no problems. You do not need to change the SSID if you are not broadcasting the SSID, and if you have added some type of encryption.
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Old December 28, 2007, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3.0charlie View Post
N is definitely better, go for it. You will have the full bandwidth of high-speed internet and will be future-proof. As for the WRT54G, that's the one I have for the last 2 years, no problems. You do not need to change the SSID if you are not broadcasting the SSID, and if you have added some type of encryption.
G routers are 54mbps and high speed is only 10-15 IF you go with Shaw and thats there extreme package so you still have a ton of headroom on that and not like you'll ever saturate it.

Most home users never even saturate 10mbps unless your like me and do large file transfers across the network then the you'll see where 54mbps comes in.

Setting up any network is NOT hard at all but sometimes its the user that doesn't know what they are doing is when the issues arise.

Personally there is no need for a normal user to NEED a N router when G or even B would suffice.
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Old December 28, 2007, 02:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enaberif View Post
G routers are 54mbps and high speed is only 10-15 IF you go with Shaw and thats there extreme package so you still have a ton of headroom on that and not like you'll ever saturate it.

Most home users never even saturate 10mbps unless your like me and do large file transfers across the network then the you'll see where 54mbps comes in.

Setting up any network is NOT hard at all but sometimes its the user that doesn't know what they are doing is when the issues arise.

Personally there is no need for a normal user to NEED a N router when G or even B would suffice.

Thanks to all of you for the info especially enaberif for the your down to earth thoughts. I think with my budget it would be better to stick with the WRT54GL and see how I like it. Since its for a laptop and not my gaming rig it may be fine. Thanks again all for your help, very much appreciated.
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