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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    One computer only: connected to home network but lose Internet

    Lately my laptop has been losing its Internet connection while still connected to the home WiFi network. This doesn't seem to be happening to any of the other four computers using this network (two laptop, one desktop; the latter is via cable connection to the router). I've been trying to troubleshoot, but naturally there is nothing in the event logs that seems to be relevant. The only topic that might be associated is a master browser error; the only other entries are telling me of searches that timed out because none of the DNS servers are responding (obviously an effect, not a cause).

    Online searches haven't proven fruitful. I haven't found anything that explains the master browser concept well enough to tell me whether or not this is related to my problem, and I haven't found any solutions that are any more recent than 2005. Some of the discussions also implicate the WINS service, which shouldn't apply (again, not much that makes sense to me, but from what I gather it's only available on Windows Server to begin with).

    My laptop is Win 7, last updates applied 11 December. Other laptops are also Win 7, the desktop is XP.

    I can't narrow down when the problem started, because it tends to fix itself after a while and I might not even notice the connection drop. It might be since the last Win 7 updates, and it's definitely since we upgraded the router to the latest monstrosity from Xfinity.

    I like to think that even though I've been out of the IT field for a few years I still have some ability to do troubleshooting, but I've run out of ideas on where to look for this one. Does anyone have any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Administrator
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    Does this happen in the same spot in the house?
    Have you added or changed any other wireless devices in the house (not necessarily computers)?
    Have you tried a wired connection?
    Have you checked for driver updates?
    Do you allow the PC to power down the NIC?

    Joe

  3. #3
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    You also might try changing the wireless broadcast channel in the router by at least a value of 3.

    Jerry

  4. #4
    Star Lounger
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    Apologies for the delayed responses; never received any notification that yours were posted!

    To answer Joe's questions:

    1. I have three locations in the house where I usually use the laptop. It happens in all three.

    2. No other wireless devices besides the computers, and nothing changed to the other three computers. After the cable modem was updated my nephew tried to link his tablet, but it's apparently incompatible with not broadcasting the network (and yes, the successful computers have that set properly).

    3. Have not tried a wired connection with this computer. However, it's also my work computer and I've had no such problems with the wireless network in the office.

    4. Haven't specifically looked for driver updates, but do general checks on a regular basis. I'll take a look at this.

    5. The cable modem is never powered down except at the whim of Mother Nature (i.e., when a windstorm interrupts the power ever so briefly).

    Jerry, if I can determine how to do that I'll give it a try. This is a Comcast setup, so documentation can be sketchy.

    Dave

  5. #5
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    Regarding Joe's last question, go into Device Manager, expand Network Adapters and right click on your wireless adapter and select Properties.

    Under the Power Management tab ensure that the box to Allow the computer to switch off this device to save power is unchecked.

    Are all of the other machines in use when this laptop loses connectivity, and if so what are they doing as this could be a bandwidth issue.

    As it works fine at work then the driver should be okay and if there was a channel conflict then that would knock the other wireless machines off.

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