I was having a problem getting my old Acer Travelmate 290L connected to my home wireless network. I borrowed my sister this old lappy 2 years back and I just got it back a month ago. I have enough system in my room and since mom say she wants to learn using IT, I place it in the living room. It now sits nicely in the middle of her table of ornaments and photo frames.
okay, back to the problem. My 6 year old nephew was at my home on the hari raya eve and he wanted to play online games on disney playhouse. So my mom requested me for internet access. I tot it was just simply turning on the Wifi switch, click on the wifi icon on the system tray, select my wireless network, click on the connect button and key in the network and confirmation key. No, it is more than that. I tried and tried but was still unable to connect it to my home wireless network. My immediate solution for him then is using my mobile broadband. The connection was slow. He complained about it but i can’t do much.
This is what i happened. I receive this message after i click the connect button.
“Windows is unable to connect to the selected network. The network may no longer be in range. Please refresh the list of available networks, and try to connect again.”
I tinkered with the settings in Wireless Network Connection Properties dialog but to no avail. And i got this message after keying in the network key.
“The network password needs to be 40bits or 104bits depending on your network configuration. This can be entered as 5 or 13 ascii characters or 10 or 26 hexadecimal characters.”
After exhausting googling, I found out that it has something to do with my security setting of wireless network. And sure enough. My router is set to use “wpa2-psk” but i can’t set to that option on the lappy. I can only choose either “Open” or “Shared” for network authetication and only “Disabled” or “WEP” for the Data Encryption. My first suspect is the OS. I updated my Windows XP service pack since it is currently now SP2 and I read that WPA2 support is added in SP3.
However, I still cannot see the additional options in the setting after the update. So it’s back to the googling board and after further searching, i got to know that the WPA2 support is also hardware dependent and conclude that my old Acer Travelmate 290L does not support it. There’s 2 choices. Either hunt for updated driver and firmware for the wireless hardware or just use my Aztech WL230 wireless usb adapter. I go with the usb adapter solution since is quick and easy. Finding updated driver and firmware could be a futile and time consuming effort.
So i installed, select the options and i got it connect at last. It sure is a good feeling to finally make it work. I practiced what i have read in “Secrets of a Rockstar programmer”. If the problem is hard, walk away. Take a break and attempt it again later. Though i walked away, the thought still lingers in my mind, in the background.
BTW, my first posting after a long absence. It’s good to be back. Hoping to write more often. Wishing all Muslims a Happy Eid Ul-Fitri.