problem automatically connecting to wireless network
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
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    Seattle, Wa. USA
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    problem automatically connecting to wireless network

    Hello.....usually I can figure these things out, but so far, not with this one. Hope I can explain this so it helps.

    I have a 3 year old HP laptop running Vista 32bit. Up until recently, when I turned on the machine it would automatically connect to my wireless network as it should, and has, for a few years.
    Now, it not only doesn't connect, but I have to go through the procedure of manually connecting by entering the SSID and using the WPS button on the router. Even then, it's hit and miss.....sometimes it says something like 'Cannot retrieve information/settings from the router' a couple of times, and then eventually connects. When I check the box 'save this profile' after connecting, this doesn't fix the problem. Using WPS has no effect as well.
    I've tried manually setting up a new connection through the wizard, after entering all information it says 'access denied', but of course, doesn't say why. I've tried everything I can think of including logging on as the admin. even though my user account has full admin. privileges.
    One thing I've noticed is when I select 'Manage wireless networks' in the Network and Sharing Center, where you can change the order of which connection Vista automatically connect to, there is nothing listed. (Not sure if this how it should look or not)
    When I select 'Add', after I fill in a few things, it says 'Access Denied' again.
    No other settings have changed.

    Changes that took place prior to this:
    Laptop was sent in to have the 'no video' problem that was an issue with HP and others fixed. (taken apart with better heatsync installed and thermal paste on graphics card and cpu)
    Comcast (cable company) version of Norton Security Suite un-installed through add/remove.

    So.....any ideas or thoughts very much appreciated, and if any further information is needed, I'll be happy to do that.
    Thanks....
    Clark
    Last edited by Clark1221; January 30th, 2013 at 05:17 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Are there other machines accessing the wireless, and if there are, do they have the same problem?

  3. #3
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    Re:

    No.....have two other desktops that are connected via cables.
    (That thought crossed my mind as well, but I don't have another wireless connection to compare).
    Thanks...

  4. #4
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    It may well be the wireless component of the router rather than your laptop. Can you try the laptop on another wireless network and see if it has a problem?

    I assume you have done the usual things as to such router issues, like unplugging the router for several seconds and then powering it back up?

  5. #5
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    Re:

    Yes, I've done pretty much everything i can think of, but I must be missing something somewhere.......maybe re-set the laptop adapter?....command line?
    Should mention.......I do have a wireless printer connected and no problems there.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
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    27,252
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo1763
    ... Can you try the laptop on another wireless network and see if it has a problem?

    I assume you have done the usual things as to such router issues, like unplugging the router for several seconds and then powering it back up?
    Quote Originally Posted by Clark1221
    ... Yes, I've done pretty much everything i can think of
    Loose wireless adapter physical connection,
    Defective wireless adapter,
    Corrupted wireless adapter driver,
    "I know nothing."
    Cheers.

  7. #7
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    re:

    I'd be leaning that way if I couldn't connect at all, but the fact that I can eventually get the laptop connected eliminates, I would think, these possibilities. Not sure if corrupted drivers would allow a manual connection???
    Thanks for the input at any rate...

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo1763
    ... Can you try the laptop on another wireless network and see if it has a problem? ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Clark1221
    ... Yes, I've done pretty much everything i can think of
    Did you or did you not test on other functioning wireless network?
    If no issues were encountered during those tests, then wireless adapter is not the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo1763
    ... I assume you have done the usual things as to such router issues, like unplugging the router for several seconds and then powering it back up?
    Quote Originally Posted by Clark1221
    ... Yes, I've done pretty much everything i can think of
    If you eliminated the wireless router as source of problem,
    That leaves the wireless adapter or directly related as likely source of problem.
    "I know nothing."
    Cheers.

  9. #9
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    re:

    Probably could.....would have to take the laptop over to a friend's house.
    Only thing about that is it wouldn't connect to a new network automatically. I'd have to go through WPS or some other manual procedure. Then I could see if it connects automatically.
    Might come down to that if I can't figure this out.

  10. #10
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    I have to go through the procedure of manually connecting by entering the SSID
    This is the case when the SSID is hidden, or not broadcast by the router. I'd be tempted to reset the router to its defaults, usually done by a paper clip on a recessed button on the router. If you do this, be sure to reset the router password from the default. Write the new one on a piece of tape on the bottom of the router.

    I wonder if the Comcast Norton changed some of the default Vista connection procedures and these have not been reset with the Norton removal. Good idea getting rid of Norton. But I suspect it may be responsible for this issue.

  11. #11
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    re:

    Was thinking along these lines as well.
    I noticed that when connecting manually (router is set to 'hidden'), I'll randomly select the network with the strongest signal, even though I know it's not mine. I'll enter the SSID and key, and of course it won't connect. Then I'll select 'connect to another network', or something like that, and my network will now be visible. I'll enter the SSID and it will prompt me to push the WPS button, and then it will usually connect (not every time though). Sometimes I'll have to do this a couple of times......a pain for sure.
    If Comcast Norton is responsible, and re-setting or making 'visible' my router has no effect, is there something I can do on the laptop to re-set/fix, the wireless connection?
    As mentioned, I've checked every setting I can think of, and access, through Windows.
    Again...thanks much to Danceman and everyone else for the input.

  12. #12
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    I googled and found this. Give it a try and see if it solves your problem.

  13. #13
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    re:

    Seems to be a couple of ways to go. One is through Device Manager......deleting the wireless adapter and re-booting. Vista will apparently re-install the adapter.
    Also could use a command prompt with these commands:

    here

    Guess I could give these a try.

    Just thinking out loud here, but before I got the 'no video' problem fixed, there were a number of improper shutdowns of Vista, and afterwards, noticed the dvd drive had disappeared, which I was able to fix in the registry. Wondering if something else related to networking became currupted as well.....possibly not related to Comcast Norton??
    Seems like I wouldn't be able to connect at all if this was the case though.

  14. #14
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    re:

    Well....still have not been able to figure this one out.

    A couple of other things I've done:

    Run the 'scannow' command in safe mode. It found and fixed a couple of damaged files (probably from the mentioned improper shutdowns)

    Uninstalled and reinstalled the wireless adapter.

    It still will not connect automatically. I'm running out of ideas here, except the registry.
    I've always been a bit leary of using a registry cleaner, but times are desperate.
    I was looking at PCHealth Setup.exe......for Vista repairs, and seems to have some good recommendations.

    When I open the Network and Sharing Center and try creating a new network profile manually, after I enter the SSID and key and click next, it still says 'Access Denied'. Of course, that's all it says.....no options, no possible solutions.....nothing. Was wondering if this is related to the overall problem.
    At this point, I've pretty much ruled out the problem being with the router.

    (Just hooked up a Vonage box to the router, with no problems).

  15. #15
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    I'm far from expert on networking. I use laptops at different workplaces, so they have to connect to a variety of routers. One workplace has a hidden SSID, and Win 7 connects automatically to it since the initial manual connection.

    Again, this is beyond my expertise, but I wonder if there's a way of resetting your Vista networking to defaults.

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