Loss of access, Disable/Repair NIC fails. 802.11g / b compatibility?

Giganews Newsgroups
Subject: Loss of access, Disable/Repair NIC fails. 802.11g / b compatibility?
Posted by:  DC (dino…@online.microsoft.com)
Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2005

I have a problem similar to the one reported in "Repeated Loss of Internet
access" (28 Dec 2005) , with a twist.

I just got a new whitebox PC, installed WinXP SP2 on it. Also installed a
TrendNet TEW-423PI card, a wireless PCI card, 802.11g, following all
instructions.

For an access point, I have a Buffalo Airstation, model WLAR-L11-L , it is
802.11b.  It has 128-bit WEP enabled.

The computer can contact the access point, and can obtain an IP address, no
problem.  I can browse the internet, send and receive email, everything
works.  Then, *at some later point* the wireless access just goes away.
The interval varies, could be 2 -3 hours.  Never more than about 4 hours,
I'd say.    The IP address is still the same, the radio signal strength
looks to be good, but all internet connectivity is gone.  Unlike some of
the others on this thread, my access does not get "slow", it goes away
completely.

Other machines on the LAN can still get to the internet.  Other machines
that connect through that AP have no problems.

Here's the twist.
After having this problem, if I try to Repair or Disable the wireless
network adapter,  it does not work.  It just waits forever and ever.  No
error message, no timeout, nothing.  If I try to shut down the machine,
same thing, it never shuts down.  I have to physically power off the
machine to restart it.  After restarting the computer, it again can reach
the internet.

If I try to repair or disable the network adapter BEFORE this problem
happens, it works.  If I try to shutdown or restart the pc  BEFORE the loss
of the wireless network, it works.

1.  Any suggestions on how to troubleshoot this?  I am guessing the radio
communication between the computer and the AP is getting into a odd
situation, but ... how can I check this?  how can I fix it?

2. any suggestions on how to forcibly bounce the NIC?  I tried devcon.exe
and it also hangs.  netsh also hangs.

The computer that is being replaced has an older 802.11b network card, by
the same manufacturer.  It worked fine, for years, using the 128-bit WEP.
It still works.    I am going to try the old card in the new computer, and
will report back.

But I am hoping someone will be able to steer me right.

Isn't 802.11g gear was supposed to be compatible with 802.11b gear?
I am also considering replacing the PCI NIC with a USB-wireless NIC.  Anyone
used any of these?  Any recommendations?

Replies