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Acquiring Network Address; but works perfectly on all other networks

Tags:
  • Laptops
  • Connection
  • Wireless Networking
Last response: in Wireless Networking
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February 28, 2011 2:49:45 AM

Hey, thanks in advanced for answering my question.

I'm working on a friends laptop that used to connect wirelessly to their network no problem, and all of a sudden it would no longer connect at all. It a 5 year old Gateway laptop running Windows XP Media Center. It just hangs at "Acquiring network access" and never connects. I'm pretty sure it's their network because it works on my home network perfectly, connects and stays connected.

Can you give me some pointers to do to the laptop and/or the network? I normally would start fresh with the wireless network, but they have a bundle package of AT&T (internet, phone & TV all-in-one) so the router is branded AT&T and don't want to mess any of that up. Should I advise them to go to AT&T for help or will they even help with that?

Please let me know what I can do, I would really appreciate it.

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a b D Laptop
February 28, 2011 5:25:18 AM


If the connection is falling over at the handshake stage, it may be a channel problem. Try configuring the laptop's wireless device to receive on the same channel as one of the other machines in the system - or set it to automatic so it searches for signal from any channels?

It's also worth trying to connect it to another network outside its usual environment to prove all the relevant settings are correct.

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a b D Laptop
February 28, 2011 1:07:02 PM

Hard to imagine that simply rebooting the system would do any harm. After all, it needs to be rebooted from time to time anyway (e.g., power loss). If that doesn’t work, then a reset is in order. Now here’s where it *may* be a problem if there’s some configuration information that would be lost. Frankly, I don’t know what that might be that couldn’t easily be reconfigured (w/ DSL, I suppose at a minimum you’d need the signon info for PPPoE). But beyond that, even for VOIP, these devices usually don’t have any configuration to speak of, it’s all based on the device identifying itself to the providers network based on MAC address (and maybe some other internal info, like serial #). So I don’t think there’s really a lot to lose w/ a reset. If you or they are concerned, call AT&T first.

This is why I hate these bundled deals. Everything then becomes a mystery, and everything becomes dependent on everything else, to the point you’re afraid to disturb it.
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March 1, 2011 9:42:11 PM

Thanks for both of your replies. I'm going to tell them to contact AT&T first to see if there is anything they can do (although I doubt they'll even care) to correct or diagnose the problem.

I will post what happens here. Please let me know if anyone else has any suggestions, I'd appreciate it!
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