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Thread: Laptop (Vista)

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    Laptop (Vista)

    My sister has purchased a new Acer laptop that has Vista installed on it. Admittedly I know nothing about Vista since I do not have it on any of my machines. She can only access the Internet, by that I mean surf the NET, at one location. If the first place she connects, after a restore has been run on her computer, is her home then that is the only place she can use her computer.

    I have wireless Internet access at my home and when she is here her computer shows she is connected to my router with a 97% signal strength, canít get much better I would think. I can see her computer if I look in my Network connections. Still she cannot surf the Net. This makes no sense to me so I try to believe Acer when they say it is a connection configuration problem. If so, why can their experts not walk us through the configuration so we can surf the net. Let me also state here that even if I hook her laptop up directly to either my router or eliminating even that and going directly to my modem with a Cat5 cable her laptop will still not surf the net. Here is their suggestion which we have tried 3 times - run a restore.

    If we restore her computer at my home and my network is the first she tries to access everything works fine until she goes home and can no longer access her router or the Internet even through a Cat5 cable. Try convincing me that my network is no good or that my router is not Vista compatible when it works fine after a computer restore yet her computer works nowhere else but my house until she runs another restore at her house. Once she runs another restore at her home she gets it setup to work at her home and now that is the only place it works. Kind of defeats the purpose of buying a laptop if it only works in one location, doesn't it.

    She has taken it to places that offer Internet access like Starbucks and cannot access the NET. Acerís suggestion for both my router and Starbuckís was to have us reset the router so Vista could find it. As laughable as that sounds I did try it at my home for her and of course it still did not work even though Vista found my network and showed a great connection at 97% signal strength, which by the way was the same even before I reset my router to go along with Acerís suggestion.

    Now Acer is saying it is a configuration problem yet after hours on the phone with them trying to help set it up properly it will still only work in the first location it sees after having run a restore.

    If it is a configuration problem any suggestion how to make this laptop work as it should and please tell me step by step because, as I said I know nothing about Vista, would be appreciated.

    Thanks
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    The connection may be set as "Private" and can not get out because she is NOT on her Home connection.
    Right click the "Network icon" in the sys tray, and select Network and Sharing. Then on the right select customize and select "Public" or the other from which is selected.

    You could also again select the icon and this time select "Connect to network". Make sure that she is connection to YOUR network and not some one else's that have things blocked.

    Also beware that "The Acer" is almost the bottom of the line as there are more problem with Acer's than any other line. Also they bought out Gateway, which may not be any help to you but may be to others.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Thanks Dave. After checking it out the connection was already set to Public so it still isn't working as a laptop should.
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Have you gone through the wireless setup and troubleshooting steps at Windows Vista Help: Networking?

    Joe
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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Yes Joe I have and didn't really find anything specific to the problem we are seeing. Also I have spent probably no less than 7 hours on the phone with the Acer technicians doing and trying everything they suggest. They always come back to running a restore which is so impractical to even think about each time you want to connect at some new location. Regardless of what we do, the computer will only access the Internet from one location, either her home or mine. Of course we have never run a restore and then tried to connect in a Starbuck's store as the first attempt to access the Internet after completing a restore. There is just nothing we have tried that allows Internet access except in one location. Acer claims that since she can get to the Internet at all that alone is proof that there is nothing wrong with the hardware or Vista. They claim it is a connection configuration problem yet they cannot come up with any solution.

    After running a restore they always have us uninstall Norton's Security Suite that they themselves installed. They also have us uninstall some other Acer specific utility that they install. Both these they say have been known to cause similar problems. Again, no matter what they have us do or what we try nothing works. Also please keep in mind that when at my home, at least, her network connections shows she is, in fact, connected to my wireless router and has a 97% signal strength. Still no surfing can be done. Also, again, not even through a direct Cat5 cable connection directly to my modem. I have no idea if it is significant or not but when the computer show she is connected to my router I can see her computer in my network neighborhood. Doesn't that too say the wireless connection has been made? It all seems very strange to me.

    Thanks for the link and suggestion.
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    When you are able to see her PC it means that her connection is visible on the LAN (inside network) not necessarily on the WAN (outside - internet). Have you tried just turning off her firewall rather than uninstalling the whole Norton suite? Have you examined the hosts file to see if there is anything funny in it?

    Also, see Gateway Support - Windows Vista - I need help with my network connection. and vista networking troubleshooting - Google Search for more troubleshooting tips.

    Joe
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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    "uninstall Norton's Security Suite "
    I did not catch in the first post that she has Norton's. It is a KNOWN fact that both Norton's and McAfee Suites are NOT always working the way the user wants them to work.
    I believe that the heart of her problem is Norton's. Strip it from the system, insall a free AV and Free firewall and have a go. If things work then you will know for sure about Norton's.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    I'll look at the other links but to answer your question about the host file, no I haven't looked at it, Don't really know where it is to look or what I would be looking for. We did actually try just turning off the firewall and when that didn't work Acer had us uninstall Norton's.

    I follow your explanation about not necessarily being connected to the Internet except that when my network was the first one her computer saw after a restore it did surf the Net and without uninstalling Norton's, if I recall correctly. We have been going at this for over a month now and have tried so many things that I may be forgetting exactly all the steps we took.

    Thanks for the suggestions Joe.
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Dave,

    I don't think I mentioned Norton's in my original post but I have uninstalled it twice and still it did no good. When you say strip it from the system do you mean to do more than just uninstall it like searching the Registry for any mention of Norton or Symantec? I have not done that one but if you think it worthwhile I can suggest it to her.

    Thanks
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    You should search Symantec Corp. for the uninstall tool that corresponds to the version of the suite you have. Symantec is notorious for leaving all sorts of junk on systems when their products are uninstalled using the add/remove programs. The correct tool should remove all traces of it from the system.

    Joe
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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    "I believe that the heart of her problem is Norton's"

    WHY do you believe that Norton is the problem Dave? I realize that it's "fashionable" to bash Norton but what SUBSTANTIVE information do you have to make the statement that you "believe that the heart of her problem is Norton's."

    I'm really an sick and tired of listening to the Norton bashing. Yes - in the past users did suffer a degradation in performance when Norton was installed. But the latest versions have improved on this tremendously.

    Certainly everyone is entitled to an opinion (however uninformed). But simply because I have Norton installed on all of my machines and since all of these machines have no problems connecting to multipe networks, should I proclaim that "if you don't have Norton installed on your computer, you will only be able to connect to one network!!!!!" ............................. NONSENSE !!!!! Makes about as much sense as "I believe that the heart of her problem is Norton's."
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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    There are way to many problem VISTA systems that have been FIXED by removing Norton's or McAfee that comes with the machines. It may be the 90 day trial version that is screwing things up.

    It may also be the user, since they may not know how to use the security area of these products and stop all of the blocking.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Interesting development and hopefully someone has an answer. Now her with network connection set to "Auto" her computer sees my router but does not ask for the password to connect. It continually tries to connect but never succeeds. Is there some way I can force her computer to ask for the password to my router to connect to it. The computer did connect to a network at a repair shop and went right to the WEB. The repairman said there was nothing wrong with her computer. I'd like to be able to prove this by connecting to my network again and then seeing if it will access the WEB. Again it sees my wireless router but will not connect to it. I believe it is because it does not ask for my password. How can I force it to ask for the password?

    Thanks
    H Lewton

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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Are you using the encryption (WPA, WEP)?

    Joe
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    Re: Laptop (Vista)

    Joe I have no idea. I'm not familiar with those terms. How would I tell?

    Thanks.
    H Lewton

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