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  1. #1
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    What about Vista? Stuck in public network?

    I have a Vista laptop. Whenever I try to connect to my wireless router it identifies it as a public network and connects me with limited acces (i.e. no internet). Every other computer in the house has no problems connecting, including 2 Win 7 laptops, my son's iPhone and Macbook, and my wife's Kindle. No matter what I do, I can't get the Network and Sharing Center to ask me the location of network, although it did ask when I connected thru an ethernet port. I tried following Fred Langa's instructions in his May 5, 2011 column "Win7 network stuck in 'Public' mode", but when I get to step 6 I don't have the option of setting up a homegroup.

    The laptop was connecting fine until Saturday and I have no idea what I did to get in this situation, or how to undo it. Is my only option to update the laptop to Win 7 so I can follow the steps in Fred Langa's solution? I even tried going back to a restore point before it stopped connecting, but that didn't change anything.
    Last edited by Deadeye81; 2011-12-27 at 05:46. Reason: Start new thread

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Hello Rice71 and welcome to the Lounge,

    How to change the network location in Vista is not as visible as it is in Windows 7. Check out post# 4 in this thread to see if that helps you change your location back to 'private network'.

  3. #3
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    Deadeye,

    Thanks for responding so quickly. I've tried using Customize to make the network Private, but that only allows for network discovery and the network is still unidentified with limited connectivity. I've actually been able to get the wireless network look and act like a Home network, but only if the wired network is connected as well. As soon as I disconnet the wired network and reboot, the wireless network goes back to being unidentified and public. I seem to remember that, in the past, when I connected to a new network I got the dialog box with the pictures of the house, office building, and park bench where I could select which type of network I was connecting to, but I don't get that any more.

    Even when I connected to wireless networks in the past that I identified as Public, I had more connectivity that I do now with my home network, and I had the ability to connect to the internet. Looking at the network status now shows that I'm only sending packets and I'm not receiving any, which makes me think that the problem is more serious than the laptop thinking that it's connected to a Public network.

    I'm going to take it to a Starbucks today to see how it reacts when I try to connect it to a new network, although I'm not sure how that's going to help me fix the problem with my home network. The only thing I haven't tried is upgrading to Win 7, which I would like to avoid, simply because of the cost, and the chance that even that won't fix the problem. I was sure restoring to a restore point before the problem started would fix it, but it didn't. I also had recently made a backup of the hard disk using Easeus, but it won't let me do a restore, so I guess that's been a waste of time as well.

    Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated, as I'm at my wit's end on how to fix the problem, and the laptop is almost useless if I can't connect to the wireless network at home, since that's all it's ever used for.

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