WISP and peer-to-peer issues

I have given up on my local ISP.  We are in a rural area and a local paging company decided to offer wirless internet access.  This great as our town of 300 would for the first time be able to have broad band.  The problem is the dont seem to know much and are always calling anothI have given up on my local ISP.  We are in a rural area and a local paging company decided to offer wireless internet access.  This great as our town of 300 would for the first time be able to have broad band.  The problem is the don’t seem to know much and are always calling another WISP for tech help.

He is the issue.  I seem to loose my connection often.  When it happens it will go out for 1-3 min then come back.  I was using an old P3 with windows xp pro a Cisco 350 card.  This computer was acting as my router as I had ICS enabled.  The computer ONLY had the OS and all updates on it.

Some times I would loose connection and it would not return at all.  When this happened, it seemed that if I reboot the computer I would get my connection back. I began to think that the ICS was the cause of my problems.  

I obtain a Cisco Air-Bridge.  I paid to have it programmed with my IP and had my ISP remove my Mac Addressing Security.  I then plugged the bridge into a router and ran a line from the router to my switch.  I have 4 other home computers on this switch.
(I am a HUGE  EverQuest fan and my whole family plays)

With this set up, I still get the 1-3min outages, 5-10 times a day.  I also will get DISCONNECTED and it will remain out until I unplug the Air Bridge and then plug it back in.

The same issue is going on with the air bridge as what was going on with the wireless card.  I began to assume that my problem was indeed my ISP but today,  I could not get my connection back at all. I rebooted the bridge 3 times and had no signal.  I then rebooted the ROUTER and the signal came back.

When I had the computer hooked up with the ICS I could use the Cisco AiroNet util.  It showed my strength to be at about 34% and quality was fair.

Any help on this situation would be greatly appreciated.

er WISP for tech help.
Who is Participating?

Improve company productivity with a Business Account.Sign Up

winstonepConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Ok. If the bank have a wireless network as well, it is possible that they could be broadcasting a stronger signal and your network is trying to connect to their network. When it fails, it doesn't then automatically pick up your WISP.

If you browse for available SSIDs, how many show up? If you have just one PC switched on, then hopefully you will just see your WISP.

This could be similar to my problem. I have two PC's next to each other. The wireless ADSL router I have down stairs and signal strength shows at about 50-60%. If I have just the one PC connected there is usually no problem or its nowhere near as bad. If I have the two running, my connection drops every 10-15 minutes. It looks like I have a PC trying to connect to another PC but failing.
I have had a very similar problem. On one PC, the connection drops at times for a few minutes and sometimes I find I'm connected to a different SSID. I'm not sure where it comes from as I have set all my 3 wirless cards and 3 Com router to my own SSID.

Regularly I found another network SSID default. When the card in the PC seemed to lose the signal, it would pick up default and effectively lose my connection.

Do you have any other wireless networks in the area? Also what standard is the town's WISP and what speed are your card's i.e. are they 11Mbps 802.11b or 54Mbps 802.11g compatible?
mrchaos101Author Commented:
11MBps 802.11b Im sure

Im not aware of any other WISP in the area or any body near by with a wirelss network.

I do live near our bank and they point to the same tower I do.. my antenna is almost direclty behind theirs. But I was told this should not matter.

I have seen where it says NOT ACCOCIATED before but then comes back.
Improve Your Query Performance Tuning

In this FREE six-day email course, you'll learn from Janis Griffin, Database Performance Evangelist. She'll teach 12 steps that you can use to optimize your queries as much as possible and see measurable results in your work. Get started today!

mrchaos101Author Commented:
well they dont have another connection.... they get service form teh same. ISP.

Is there any way the antenna can lock up or be bad?
If the bank is connecting to a wirless ISP then its not impossible that your kit is trying to connect to the bank because of a stronger signal. Just because they are not an ISP themselves, does not mean your equipment won't try to connect. Your equipment may be trying to connect to something with a compatible signal that's stronger than the ISP.

I have found that placing the antena can be critical. Just moving it a few inches can make a huge difference. Also even another person in a room, perhaps even just standing in a doorway as happened to me recently, can cut the signal strength enough to drop the connection. I would check the antena and see if moving it will improve signal strength. Connections of 60%-65% or more seem to be completely stable.

That's all I can suggest without checking specific details of the hardware.
mrchaos101Author Commented:
My net work is had wired.  I use cat 5 cables. The only wireless I have is from ISP to my antenna.
Is your antenna inside the property or is it one fixed to a wall outside?

If your signal strength is pretty much the same as other customers, there may not be anything we can do about that.

Only other suggestions I can offer are to try a wireless card in one of your PCs. Check if that will connect on its own ok and look for any other networks. These can be bought for as little as £12 these days (see www.ebuyer.com).

If I can think of anything more, I'll let you know.
I would have your ISP come and look over your setup again, they should be able to test the signal strength. I would leave them to fix this issue. In my opinion they should be responsible for getting your internet working smoothly.
mrchaos101Author Commented:
Ok thanks any way.

As I said,  I had started with a wireless card and using ICS and was having issues to.  I also have a spare card that my parents use to use before they moved.
mrchaos101Author Commented:
ISP TOWER ------------------->  BANK ANTENNA ---------------->my antenna______Airbridge____router____Switch__PC's   Here is how things are set up.
mrchaos101Author Commented:
Well.... WAY down the road and it seems they were a FEW versions behind in firm ware.

All seems to be good now that they flashed thier AP.

goinng to go ahead and give points to winstonep  as he was here and tried the most

thanks all

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.