[SOLVED] Two laptops getting very poor reception, others connect fine

MrYossu

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Someone was working here before the lockdown, and brought his two Win10 laptops in every day. He was working in a room not far from the main office which has the router, and never had any problems connecting to the wifi.

He started back here yesterday, and is having major problems with both laptops. His wifi connection is very poor, drops every few minutes, and when it actually works, is very slow. Sometimes the icon on the system tray shows a good connection, but his browser can't connect to any sites.

He has run the network troubleshooter, but it didn't find anything. He's also restarted the laptops many times, and we've restarted he router, but it didn't make any difference. Had it been one laptop, I would have suspected it, but given that both are showing the same problems, it seems very unlikely to be a hardware issue.

We have another lap top and a tablet being used daily in the building, both from much further away (different floors, double skin brick walls etc), and neither of them have any problems at all with the wifi, so I don't think it's the router.

I realise there isn't much to go on, but does anyone have any suggestions as to why his two laptops are having such problems, even though they were both working fine before the lockdown, whereas the devices that have been here all the time connect fine?

Thanks
 

Ralston18

Titan
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What make and model laptops?

If the laptops are indeed only wireless then there is another option.

Are you familiar with the netsh commands?

For example, run: "netsh wlan show all" via the Command Prompt on a wireless laptop.

netsh is very useful for delving into wireless lan problems.

References (and you can easily find other references and more information):

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4000462/windows-10-analyzing-wireless-network-report

https://www.cellstream.com/reference-reading/tipsandtricks/437-win10-wlan-commands

Use "netsh ?" to get the command list.

Note: some of the netsh outputs can be lengthy.
 

Ralston18

Titan
Moderator
Does he or did he take the laptops home or to another location and use them on other networks either wired or wireless?

Check that only the wireless network adapters are enabled. With the wired network adapters disabled. Only one network adapter either wireless or wired should be enabled.

On both laptops run "ipconfig /all" without the quotes and compare the results to the laptop and tablet that have no problems.

Run "ipconfig /flushdns" via the Command Prompt on the laptops. That may restore normal/expected connectivity.
 

MrYossu

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Does he or did he take the laptops home or to another location and use them on other networks either wired or wireless?
Yes, he was working from home during the lockdown, and was using his mobile as a wireless modem. His lap top doesn't have a port for a network cable, so he won't have been using a wired network.

Check that only the wireless network adapters are enabled. With the wired network adapters disabled. Only one network adapter either wireless or wired should be enabled.

On both laptops run "ipconfig /all" without the quotes and compare the results to the laptop and tablet that have no problems.
I'll ask him to do this and see, but I suspect the wired network adapters may be a redherring, as his lap top may not even have nay installed as you can't plug in a network cable.

Run "ipconfig /flushdns" via the Command Prompt on the laptops. That may restore normal/expected connectivity.
Forgot to mention that we tried that and it didn't help.

Thanks for the reply, I'll see what he says.
 

Ralston18

Titan
Moderator
What make and model laptops?

If the laptops are indeed only wireless then there is another option.

Are you familiar with the netsh commands?

For example, run: "netsh wlan show all" via the Command Prompt on a wireless laptop.

netsh is very useful for delving into wireless lan problems.

References (and you can easily find other references and more information):

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4000462/windows-10-analyzing-wireless-network-report

https://www.cellstream.com/reference-reading/tipsandtricks/437-win10-wlan-commands

Use "netsh ?" to get the command list.

Note: some of the netsh outputs can be lengthy.
 

MrYossu

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@Ralston18 I'll have to check the make and model of the two with him (he isn't here now, working from home again due to these issues).

I haven't really used netsh much, but will take a look.

Thanks again
 

MrYossu

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@Ralston18 I discovered this morning that now even the lap top and tablet we have here are also unable to hold a network connection, so it looks like it's nothing to do with the two specific devices I mentioned the other day. Not sure why the two local ones worked then, but they don't now.

So, does this change what we need to do? All devices show a strong connection in the status bar, but are unable to access the network.

Thanks
 

Ralston18

Titan
Moderator
What error message(s), if any, are being presented or captured when the wireless devices are unable to access the network?

Are wired devices connecting to the network?

Trace all network related cables - may be some loose connection somewhere; switch, access point, etc..

Make and model modem, router, or modem/router if combined?

Take a look in the Router's logs (if available and enabled). The router's logs may have captured some problem.

And try the netsh commands. See what they may reveal. The "wlan" requires a wireless network adapter so if wireless is not working any results there may be moot.

Worth a try.

Also take a look at ARP using "arp -a" on both wired and wireless devices. Get a sense of what they are seeing (or not seeing) on the network.
 

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