willow_red: (Evil Willow)
Thanks for the advice on un-b0rking my wifi. I tried to follow it, but seem to be somewhat incompetent. I think my wireless adapter was using its own control panel, but darned if I can find it. (Oh, Windows Search, why must you suck so hard?) With continued Google searching, I found instructions on how to enable Wireless Zero Configuration. It likes to keep shutting itself off, but after some flailing, it stuck with me long enough to get the connection up and running. Part of my problem seemed to be using the wrong MAC address to lock down the wifi, but that's working again.

Of course, because all things must balance out, my iPod thinks it's connected to the wifi (with all three bars even), but fails at anything requiring an internet connection. And the laptop remains silent.

At least I can roam the house with the laptop again. That's something. And now, I require sleep.
willow_red: (Evil Willow)
Am thoroughly perplexed by the current status of my laptop. Wifi quit on me this morning, so tonight, I messed with the cable modem until it started working again. And this is where things got strange. My iPod Touch can see the wifi network, but my laptop cannot. This led to the fun experience of reconfiguring my wireless network settings on the iPod. Everything's pretty much back to normal again, but the laptop still can't see the wireless network, even though it's explicitly allowed to connect (note that it couldn't see the wireless network even after everything got reset to defaults).

The other incredibly weird part is that it detects other networks (my neighbors'), but the GUI to select which network I want to connect to has changed. This makes no sense to me. I haven't made any significant system changes that I know of. The only recent changes made have been to install McAfee (to get rid of a trojan I picked up a couple of weeks ago) and BOINC. Note that both of these software packages were installed and working without problems for over a week before this.

Also, my laptop quit playing sound a couple of weeks ago, which it does from time to time, but it usually comes back, and it hasn't yet. Anyone have any ideas? Google is failing me on this one, and it would be nice to know if I'm simply going crazy. Laptop is running Windows XP SP 2.

Edit: Now the iPod sees the network, connects to it, and claims not to have Internet access, despite three bars.
willow_red: (Tetsuo)
I've wanted a laptop computer since, well, sometime in high school, but for one reason or another, it has never happened. Heck, I was going to buy one last year, but instead, that money went to buy a new car after my old one was totalled. But I think this year is finally the year for it! Since I know that many of you know far more about computers than I do, I wanted to put this out here before I actually buy, so if there's something you know about what I've picked out that I don't, please comment and let me know what you think of it.

First off, here's what I really want the laptop for: I've been thinking a lot, and it really comes down to being a so-called "desktop replacement." Now, my desktop isn't going anywhere, but it is almost six years old, so I kinda need an upgrade. It would also be nice to have something portable that I can take on road trips, or even just bring to my parents' house because frankly, their computer is a PITA to use. I'm willing to spend a bit for processor speed, memory, and HD because I want it to last a while, and I hear that upgrades suck on laptops. Also, I really, really don't want anything that Vista has contaminated, but I'm not ready to make the switch to a Mac, so XP it is.

I found something I like on Tiger Direct. It's a custom-built Systemax (same company that built my current desktop box) with the following price and selected options:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/configdetails.asp?Base=3329139
Systemax 15.4" Widescreen Build-to-Order with Windows XP (base price: $699)

  • Windows XP Home Edition
  • Intel Core 2 Duo T7500 2.2GHz 800FSB 4M Processor  (Add $220.00)
  • 1GB PC5300 DDR2 667MHz SODIMM (1GB x 1)  (Add $50.00) 

  • 160GB 2.5" 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive  (Add $60.00)  

  • DVDRW Dual Drive  (Add $20.00)  

  • No Floppy Drive Selected   

  • Intel 3945ABG Wireless Mobile
  • Integrated 10/100 Network Adapter

  • No Mouse Selected

  • Computer Associates eTrust InoculateIT Anti-Virus
  • Microsoft Office Ready Pro 2007/60-Day Free Trial

  • No Additional Battery Selected  

  • No Additional AC Adapter Selected

  • No Docking Station/Laptop Stand

  • No USB Hub Selected

  • 3 Year Parts & Labor Notebook Warranty  (Add $90.00) 

Total price: $1139.99


So, what do you think? (I'm opting for just the free trial on MS Office, since I can get discount MS software through work.) I've been staring at this for over a month now, and I think I'm ready to buy.

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May 2013

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