inspiron 8200 wireless switch not on?

Networking, Internet, Wireless

Networking, Internet, Wireless
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inspiron 8200 wireless switch not on?

  • I am using an Inspiron 8200 with a Dell TrueMoble 1150 mini pci card.  I have gone thru all of the trouble shooting tips and I can not get it to see any available wireless networks.

     

    I have a gateway laptop that has no problem seeing the wireless network and connects with no problem.

     

    I have all of the service packs for Windows XP home edition and all of the updated drivers for the network adapter.

     

    I don't know what else to do.  Please help!

  • Assuming the 1150 card is showing up in Network Connections, and all the required drivers are installed, all you should need to do to enable the radio is to press Fn+F2 (this also turns the radio off, which can be useful if on battery but not planning to connect to the network).

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • I have tried the fn+f2 and that does not seem to work.  I also installed the client manager from the driver download support page.  I can use this software to turn on and off the radio but still no available networks.

     

    I have checked the device manager and the 1150 is "enabled and working properly".

     

    any other suggestions?

  • Check in the BIOS (F2 at startup) to make sure the Wireless setting is set to "Fn+F2/Application" (or something similar) as that insure the Fn+F2 key combination and any software control settings work correctly.  It is possible it is set to something else (or even disabled) which could prevent the radio from being enabled.

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • In the bios the only thing I could find is:

     

    Mini PCI Device       wireless

    Mini PCI Device       enabled

     

    The only option I had was to disable the device or enable the device and I made sure it was set to enabled.

     

    I tried it again and this is what I get:

     

    No Wireless networks were found in range

    Please make sure your wireless switch is turned on.

     

    oh, btw, Thank you for all of your help thus far.

     

    What should I try next?

  • Are you running Win2K or XP on the 8200?

     

    In the Client Manager there should be an option to have it display all networks it can see.  Unfortunately, I don't remember exactly how to get to it.  If you are in WinXP you should be able to use the Wireless Zero Configuration (WZC) service instead of the Client Manager (and WZC is in most ways easier to use, if not better) and have it display available networks that way.

     

    Lets see (thinking 'out loud' as it were) ... if the card isn't seeing any networks either the antennae aren't connected (easy to check by accessing the miniPCI card bay on the bottom of the system), the card isn't seated correctly (which usually has other problems showing up as well, like not seeing the card at all), the radio is disabled (enabled via the Client Manager "Enable Radio" option or Fn+F2), or there are no detectable signals present (ruled out by having a known good wireless system pick up a signal in the same locaton as the problem machine).

     

     

     

    PS: this is making me access memories I haven't had to touch in years.  I last helped a customer with an 1150 back in 2005. ;)

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • The antennae?  ok that is an unexplored option.  Where do I look and how do I get to it?  All I see are screws.

     

    I see an infrared port on the right side.  Is that the card?

  • Sorry, I should have included that in my post.  The service manual for the 8200 has the instructions for removing and installing the wireless card.  Connecting the antenna leads to the card are part of that process (should be two of them, might only be one, depending on when the system shipped).

     

    When disconnecting and connecting the antennae please keep in mind they are snap-on co-axial connections, even if they appear to be soldered into place.  When disconnecting them, don't pull on the wires if you can help it but instead hook a fingernail between the connector and the card to pop it off.  To put them back on just line up the connector on the wire with the one on the card and press down firmly until it snaps into place.

     

     

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • OK....I have taken the plate off and unattached the antennae and removed the card.  I then reseated the card and snapped the antennae back on and resecured the plate.

     

    Still no available networks.

     

    There was only one antennae wire that I could see.

     

    Any other sugestions?

  • Do other wireless adapters work at that location?

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • yes,  an intel pro/wireless 3945abg net card works great.  It is currently installed in a gateway m465-E laptop running windows xp service pack 2.

     

     

    I am trying to connect to a Motorola wireless router/cable modem if that information helps.

  • I'm trying to dredge up the info I used to have at the ready when I worked in wireless support (getting the 1150 miniPCI working was about 90% of my calls for the first year I was there).  I remember the 1150 could be real picky about connections sometimes.

     

    Lets try this from another tack.

     

    Have you tried an unencrypted connection to see if that works?

     

    For WEP encryption, are you limiting yourself to the ASCII character range for the individual hex pairs (42 - 7A, iirc). The 1150 doesn't like hex pairs in the encryption key outside that range so, e.g., a 64bit key of 0x0245454545 fail to work because the first hex-pair is 0x02, whereas 0x4545454545 would work fine because all 5 pairs are in the "accepted" range for that card.  If you are not sure if the pairs are in the correct range, try using a 5 (or 13) char ASCII key instead of a 10 (or 26) char hexadecimal key and see if that makes a difference, since the ASCII keys are automatically a subset of the hex options (00 - FF for each pair).  If this didn't make sense, let me know which part I confused you on. :)

     

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • I don't think encryption is the problem when it doesn't see any wireless networks at all.  That seems like a device/antennae/radio type problem.  It doesnt see any available networks.
  • Lets try this then

    • boot into Safe Mode
    • uninstall the Client Manager software from Add/Remove Programs
    • uninstall the driver (if it is in Add/Remove Programs) and remove any entries in Device Manager for the 1150 card
    • reboot the computer
    • let Windows install the drivers for the 1150 card (or load the latest Dell driver)
    • if you wish (need) to install it, load the latest Client Manager software
    • reboot once again
    If that doesn't fix the problem then the only thing I can conclude is that it is a failed card.

    You can request replacement reinstallation media for US purchased systems here.
    Dell Drivers & Downloads for all systems.

  • I went out and bought a usb wireless adapter and it seems to be working great.

     

    Thank you for all of your help.

     

    The 1150 must be just played out or something.

    :smileyvery-happy: