Monday, August 22, 2005

Arrr, Hardware

Got home last Friday night and I couldn't connect to my wireless network. It sometimes happens and I have to reboot the WAP and/or router, so I didn't think anything about it. Once everything came back up, my laptop could see the WAP, but I couldn't aquire a network address through DHCP. There was no activity on the WAP so I thought something was screwy with my laptop. I tried my Wife's laptop, saw the WAP, but wasn't able to get a network address. Since both laptops are running Windoz, I figured I'd reboot everything and see what happens. Nothing happens.

I fired up my Linux box and started looking at the network. All seemed fine. I could ping the other hosts on the network, but couldn't ping the WAP (I think I can do that, but by now I am second guessing myself). So I reset both the router and WAP back to factory settings and changed all the static IP numbers on my network. Still no dice. At this point I figured my WAP is toast and I'll have to replace it. I have my eye on that little 4 port router with WAP attached anyway, so it will be a good chance to upgrade my technology. It's 23:30 and I need to go to a wedding tomorrow, so I give up.

While we were away Saturday the power went out at the house. Now, both the router and WAP are on a UPS, so they shouldn't have been affected. My wife fires up her laptop while I am on the desktop and says "When did you fix the wireless network?". WTF? Now it's working. I wonder if the WAP is running embedded Windoz?


Noons said...

I've lost track of the number of times my adsl routerhaslost its marbles to the point that the only thing to do is to power it off, wait, then power it on again. Yup, they most definitely are running some form of Windoze...

Mark Bole said...

Hmm. I haven't had any such problems, except once or twice a year. In response to a similar problem, my ISP says I have to power off the ADSL modem (and, they say, my router and all other computing devices, but I don't think that is part of the problem).

In my part of the world (northern CA), we have power outages 1-3 times a year, especially during the hot summer months, so it's usually not a problem. It sounds like you are already using static IP addresses for your critical boxes. Why use DHCP on your home network at all?

I strongly believe you should never be afraid to reboot (power cycle) your hardware. In fact I recommend doing it once per month, on a scheduled basis.