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WINXP access drops

Posted on 2005-03-12
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Last Modified: 2013-11-30
This problem just recently started happening

... Ok... I replaced a faulty hard drive with a working pull from another system. I installed the drivers that I needed to, and Panda Internet Security Platinium firewall/antivirus. Everything was going along just fine, then the internet dropped... I checked the signal, and found that it was 'excellent'. I tried command prompt ping the router and got an 'unreachable' error message. I ran ipconfig and got the default windows ip whenever there is an error 169.254.xxx.xxx. I checked under service and found that Wireless Zero Config is set to automatic with 'do nothing' under recovery. I rebooted and it worked fine again, the internet access worked perfectly. But about 2 hours later... the same thing happened. I tried ipconfig /release and /renew but that did not work. The only way I can get access to the internet back is to reboot. My system configs are below (they were cut & pasted from somewhere else... dso forgive the length). If I have left anything out, or anyone needs any additional info, let me know...

And thanks in advance.
:) KarenMarie

CPU: AMD Athlon XP 3200+ Barton 400MHz  
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-7NNXP
Memory: 1536 MB of Kingston DDR 3200  
Video Card: Asylum VisionTek Xtasy 9600 PRO nVidia nForce2 U400  
Hard Drive: Western Digital 120.0 GB @ 7200 RPMS  
Additional Hard Drives: Western Digital 120 GB 7200rpm. Western Digital 40GB 7200 rpm.  
Monitor: KDS Rad-7C 17
CDR/CDRW Manufacturer & Model: Sony DRU710A 12X DVD+R Double Layer/DVD+RW Drive
DVD R/W: Lite-On LDW-401S 4x DVD+R/RW
Storage Interface: IDE,USB  
Sound Card: Sound Blaster Audigy Platinum EX  
Speakers: Altech Lansing #251 5.1 surround sound gaming speakers.  
Internet Connection: Comcast Cable,Linksys Wireless Router and Linksys Wireless Modem
Operating System: WinXP PRO SP1
Other Components: GlobalWin Sapphire 520 PSU, GlobalWin K88t Heatsink/Fan, I/O external DVD Burner. Linksys BEFW11S4 wireless router and card. Linksys cable modem. Belkin USB Hub. Soyo BayONE AVI plus. Canon i960 printer. CanoScan D1250U2F USB film/document Scanner. Microsoft wireless desktop keyboard and mouse.  
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Question by:karenmarie1963
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24 Comments
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13526457
sorry.. forgot to mention that ... i reinstalled XP over the XP installation that was there... there was a good reason for me to think it was necessary at the time.... unfotunately, i cannot recall what it was.

;)
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13527243
Stop and disable the wireless zero config service and see how you go. Also maybe switch how you configure the card- if you use the windows utility then switch to the vendor supplied one, or vice versa.
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13552669
conradie... thanks for the reply.

Unfortunately, that did not work. Internet access still stops for some unknown reason. The utility tells me that I have between 87-93% signal strength. On the most recent occurance, I decided to get some info that may, or may not, be useful.

I ran ipconfig from a  command prompt:

ipconfig /all
Hostname: (was correct)
Primary DNS Suffix: (was Blank)
Node Type: Unknown
IP Routing Enabled: NO
WinsProxy Enabled: NO

Ethernet Adapter Wireless Network Connection:
Connection-Specific DNS (was blank)
Description: Instant Wireless PCI V2.7
Physcal Address: 00-06-22-CD-xx-xx (i changed the last 2 to XX)
DCHP Enabled: YES
Autoconfiguration Enabled: YES
Autoconfiguration IP: 169.254.238.244 (Windows default error???)
Subnet Mask: 255.255.0.0

So.. then I tried /flushdns and /registerdns and got an ok message. So, I /released and when I tried to /renew I got the following message:
An error occured while renewing Interface Wireless Network Connection: Unable to contact your DCHP Server. Request Timed Out.

So, I rebooted, the connection was fine again, and here I am. If there is any more info that I need to provide, please let me know... I will supply it!

Thanks so much for your time!
:) KarenMarie
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13552846
Have you tried to disable and re-enable the connection when this happens instead of fully reboot? Does that reconnect you?
Are you running the latest drivers for the Wifi card?
Have you run all the latest updates for windows?
Do you have the latest firmware for the wireless router?
Just as a test try disble the Panda Internet security firewall for a while and see if you get the error.
If it is an option you may even consider manually specifying the IP instead of using DHCP, even if it was just to test for a while.
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13559257
Hello Again, Conradie...

Yes, I did try disable/re-enable the connection when this happens. I got an error message pop up that read:

Application Gateway Layer has encountered a problem and needs to close.

so, I decided to get the error info and got this:

szAppName: alg.exe
szAppVer: 5.1.2600.00
szModName: Unknown
szModVer: 0.0.0.0
Offset: 00000000

None of this makes any sense to me, but I figured I would post it, just in case someone else understands it. I have checked and all the drivers and firmware are up to date.

There is one thing that I wonder about... The software is installed for the card utility, even though it is disabled. I am wondering if it is starting itself for some reason (just a wild guess, dont know if it is possible) and conflicting with the windows utility. So, this morning I completely UNINSTALLED the card utility software... just to see what happens.
 
If the problem occurs again, I will post imediately.. otherwise, I will see what happens over the next 48 hours or so and then come back and post the outcome.

Again, thanks so much for your time!
:) KarenMarie
0
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13561206
No problem! You also may want to read this:

http://www.neuber.com/taskmanager/process/alg.exe.html
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13582657
It happened again.
And again
And again.

I got so frustrated.... I am sure you can imagine!! So, I started trying so many different things that I forgot when I did what! Ha, serves me right for being too impatient to try one thing at a time and writting everything down. I called the cable company. They sent a guy around to check the signal inside the house. He said... and I cannot quote, cause I have no clue what he was talking about... that I was supposed to have a signal that measured from between -4 thru +6... when he tested it, he said I was getting something like a +14.5 or something and that it was way too strong and spiking the modem... so he put a cap on the wire that led to the modem. The difference I have notice since he did that... I was getting a signal strength (according to the windows utility) between 87-93%. After his visit, it is down to a steady 78% and I have noticed a difference in speed. But it did not find/solve the problem :(

After another two days of this... I got sooooo mad... that I just took the entire hard drive out and replaced it with a brand new one. Dont ask me why I did this... the hard drive was here, and I had tried everything else, so I figured...what the He11!... ;). I also unplugged the modem and the router for 10 minutes then pluggged it back in. I had done this previously, but thought with the new hard drive, and fresh WinXP install, it couldnt hurt.... and so far... all afternoon and this morning, I have not had any problem.

Changing the hard drive might have been a bit drastic, and probably did not find what the problem was, but for now... it has made it go away. If it happens again, I will shop for a new modem/router.

I will be back with an update on Monday...
Hope you have a great weekend, conradie!
:) KarenMarie
0
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13582678
You too KarenMarie- hope this gets it sorted out for you! And lets check this out methodically if it doesnt get it sorted- I wouldnt rush out and buy a new modem/router! : ) Anyway- lets cross that bridge if/when we get to it. Bye!

Ken
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13583108
Well, that was short lived...hahaha!!

I went downstairs to vacuum and when I came back.. the connection was as DEAD as the Monty Python Parrot!

I got the same 169.254.238.244 ip as before. I tried to renew and the same error message:
An error occured while renewing Interface Wireless Network Connection: Unable to contact your DCHP Server. Request Timed Out.

I tried to reboot, but this time, it did not right itself. So, I unplugged the modem and the router. I turned off the computer, and replaced the Wireless NIC card. And here I am.

This is driving me crazy. It appears to be a windows error setting... but to be honest, I am not so convinced that it is... This system had been working fine for almost 2yrs. without any problems. Then all of a sudden, the problems begin. I cannot find any settings or services that are different than they were for all that time.... but if it is a hardware problem... hmm... is it the modem, the router, the signal... I have no clue..

Well, I just replaced the NIC.. so lets see where this brings me. If I am missing something, please let me know!
:) KarenMarie
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13587571
Ok, I spent over 90 minutes on the phone with Comcast yesterday. They think it is my modem. So, we arranged for me to pick up a loaner tomorrow and give that a go for a few days to see if that it the problem.

As for me... I have no idea... the internet access fails and the ip address gets replaced with the windows default ip and I cannot get rid of it without a reboot. same old, same old.

Will post updates as they occur.
:)
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13624056
Installed the new modem this morning.

I had HUGE problems getting it set up on this system. Could not catch an IP address other than the windows default 169.254.x.x... had to reboot a few times. Funny thing is... my daughter is home from college on spring break and brought her laptop. She got on the network instantly.. and has had NO problems since she arrived, Monday.

Whew... sigh...

updates as event warrant.

:)
0
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13641215
You know- you may want to consider manually setting up your IP etc. Set it up so that it matches the settings that you get from ipconfig /all when it is working, but just manually specify all the settings. Also- are there any other wireless networks nearby? Is your computer trying to switch to one of them? Check the order of preffered networks in the utility for your wifi card and make sure that your wireless network is on top. Also- update the drivers for the wifi card to the latest available on the manufacturers site.

Let me know how that all goes!

-Ken
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13702241
Ok.. here is the latest update:

After the tech guy came and put the cap on the cable, I am getting between 236-1246k download speeds. :(
I have done broadband speed tests everyday and that is pretty much the range.

The connection drops:

Still happening. The access drops, and the ip gets replaced with the windows default. I need to reboot. I called Comcast back as requested of me, and was told that the guy I spent over 90 minutes on the phone with got it all wrong. This kid said that he was showing a strong signal to the modem and that is all that he needed to be concerned about. He said he will send someone out to check why i am getting such low speeds but I am pretty much SOL about the rest of it.

I have taken your advice as far as manual settings. I opened the TCP/IP settings and manually entered:
IP Address: 192.168.1.1
Gateway: 250.250.250.0
Default Gateway: 192.168.1.1
DNS Servers: 68.87.xx.xxx

Then I went to the router page and found the setting there to be:
Login Type: DHCP
Internet IP: 68.37.215.xx
Subnet Mask: 255.255.254.0
DNS Servers: 68.87.xx.xxx (matches above)

Here is the weird thing though... When I open the TCP/IP settings and choose SUPPORT the settings are:
IP Address: 169.254.101.171 (windows default???)
Subnet Mask:255.255.0.0
Gateway: 192.168.1.1

I dont know why it is showing the IP address as the windows default. Perhaps it is supposed to, I have no clue about that.
Funny you should ask if there are any other wireless networks in the area.... when I posted all of the above... up until 03/25/05 I am 100% certain there was NOT. However, since I did all this, I read your asking me in the post above and decided to look today. Sure enough, there is something there...

Wireless Network Connection Properties -----> Properties ----->  Wireless Networks:

My linksys is there... but there is also something else I have never seen before today... 05B401972377 but there is not the little circle around it to show I am or can connect to it. I tried to connect to it, and lost all signal to everything, and had to reboot. I tried deleting it and it appeared again upon reboot. Have no idea what it is, but it was not there yesterday. Makes me worry about security, as if I can see that, whomever it belongs to can probably see mine. And if they are more proficient at hacking then I, ... I should really look into security, no?

Anyway... I just did the manual settings about 2 hours ago... lets see what happens... in any case, I am really p*ssed off about less than 1MB download speeds.

:)
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13702262
sorry... those subnet masks are:
255.255.255.0

:) typo!
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Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13720062
KarenMarie-

Sorry for the delay getting back to you... how is going there now? Manual IP working better?

Ken
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Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13722690
Didn't think anyone was still reading this... but here is an update:

Entering the manual settings did not work. The IP dropped and was replaced with the windows default. I put the settings back to automatic... was fine for two hours, and the same problem occured.

I got frustrated and pulled all the spare parts I had laying around the house, and built an entire new system... motherboard, RAM, HD, Graphics card and sound card.I also went out and purchased a BRAND NEW Motorola Cable Modem Gateway SBG900 and new matching NIC card. A lot of hassle and expense but...  Hey, at this point, I do NOT want there to be ANY question as to whether it is an issue with my equipment.

Same problem happened again. So, at this point, I am ready to cause harm to what/whom ever is at fault here.

The cable guy came out this morning. He tested the signal from the pole and said it was fine. He then plugged a laptop into the modem and said that was fine. After three minutes, the IP dropped, and he got the windows default. He called his dispatcher and was told that they had a really strong signal, so I was pretty much SOL... he tried to release and renew the IP and when he could not, they tried to blame the modem. As you can probably imagine, I was at the point of dizzying frustration at this point. I would not let the cable guy leave until I spoke to tech support.

After 20 minutes on hold, I got a new guy who asked me for my info (name, address, account #) FOUR TIMES!!!! Here is what he finally told me:

The info on my account has never been updated. Their system periodically checks the info and if it does not match, the system will drop me. So, he rebuilt my account. And to be nice, he gave me the next 6 months of service at $19.99 per month. He gave me his phone and extension #'s in case there was a problem, I could call him back directly. After less than an hour... you guessed it! Dropped IP and default Win IP of 169.254.xxx.xx

I called the # and was told that there was no way I could ever speak to the same person again... I had to start from scratch with this girl... she checked and her opinion of the problem.... Someone was stealing my internet! Hahaha!! She made me turn off ALL comuters in the house, and found that there was still a pull on the modem. She said that every tiime someone else got on my network connection it dropped me off and my ip could not renew so it was replaced with the WIN default. She gave me instructions on how to set up encryption keys a as well as her phone and extension #'s so I could call her back directly if there was a problem (makes no sense since she could not put me back to the other guy).... So, I went thru everything... and enabled the hardware firewall and encryption on the modem, and tried again. I couldnt even ping the modem!!!

So, I called again, and again was told that I could not talk to that person... I had to start from scratch... JEEZ! Ok... this kid basically told me that I was getting a connection and that ended Comcast responsibility!! So, I called Motorola... started from scratch with him...

And the outcome... I have been dealing with Tech support since 11:00AM this morning... it is nw 8:10PM and i JUST got off the phone and got an email telling me that there was a reply to this thread!!! Can you imagine!! I have internet and only 64-bit encryption... as we could not get the 128-bit going. So... I will let you know how this goes tomorrow or the next day.

:)
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13723353
well, that did not last long!

it is now 10:30PM and guess what happened!!!!!!!

IP dropped and was replaced with the Win default IP!

I have no idea why....I mean THREE systems all dropping the IP address???

I have tried THREE different modems, TWO different routers and now this motorola modem gateway. I have NO idea why this is happening... who to call or what to do!!

I am SOOOO frustrated!!!

:(
:(
:(
0
 
LVL 9

Accepted Solution

by:
conradie earned 420 total points
ID: 13728944
I really dont see how if you setup a static IP on the windows machine that it would go back to the default. Are you sure it was setup right? I have never seen the IP change by itself if it is set statically. Please confirm exactly where you changed it, and what it was changed to.
Under the IP configuration you may even want to set the General Page AND the alternate settings to the same static IP that is valid on your network.

Make sure that you are setup like this:

Internal:
IP: 192.168.1.1
SM: 255.255.255.0
DG:

External:
DHCP (68.37.215.x- from the ISP)

Computer:
IP: 192.168.1.x (Whatever it was before this... just not 192.168.1.1!)
SM: 255.255.255.0
DG: 192.168.1.1

Please let me know what these are if they are set differently to this.

Also please walk me through your setup- what do you have, including model#'s.

EG:

Comcast Cable
||
Cable Modem (Model#?)
||
Router with Wireless(Linksys? Model#?)
||                                                  ||
Laptop using wireless?                     Desktop hard wired?

Lets see if we can get to the bottom of this!


0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13737558
Comcast Cable
Modem = Motorola Cable Modem Gateway SBG900
Desktop = Motorola WPCI8010G
Desktop = intergrated wirelesss NIC

I purchased the Motorola setup on 03/06/05. I got a little tired of being told that it was my modem/router. Iwas using the Linksys.

The manual setup:
I am not sure if what I did was exactly correct. When I was using the LINKSYS...I opened the windows wireless connection settings, opened the TCP/IP settings and entered this:

IP Address: 192.168.1.1
Gateway: 255.255.255.0
Default Gateway: 192.168.1.1
DNS Servers: 68.87.xx.xxx

Once I switched to the Motorola and had the problem, I used their utility and entered this:
WAN IP: 68.36.22.xxx
DNS 1: 68.87.64.xxx
DNS 2: 68.87.64.xxx
Gateway: 192.168.100.1
Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0

But here is an update:

Once I switched to the Motorola.... When using their utility, there was something that showed up on the available networks page along with mine. I have never seen it before 04/04/05 and only saw it once or twice. The motorola utility showed it all the time. It was there, but I could not connect to it.

Ok, this gets a bit weird now... I have been told by more than one person, that because I am using a wireless router (now gateway) there is a strong possibility that someone is piggybacking my signal... and that is what is knocking me off line. I dont know how true that is. I will say that new neighbors have moved in about a month ago...pretty much the time this all started happening. I asked them yesterday if they had cable internet. They said... no, but they are having trouble with their wireless phone. Doubt that could be it, and am not sure if they have internet or not.

But.... I got on the phone with Motorola again... turned everything off, reset the SBG900... waited 10 minutes....rebuilt everything... and set the whole thing up using the firewall, and encryption. That was yesterday at 3:00PM and I have not been kicked off yet. This is the longest that I have had steady service in over two weeks...

So, let me ask... is it possible that if someone were to pick up my signal, and gain access to my service, that it would kick me off? Could they get control of the network and therefore not allow me to renew the IP thru my router?

:)
KarenMarie
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13754777
Here is an update:

I have not had any major problems since Thursday 04/07/05 3:00PM. I have not lost the IP address. I have not seen the windows default 169.254.xx.xx since that date/time. This was the time, as stated above that I tore the entire network down and rebuilt it, using the modem firewall and encryption.

However,  I am getting speeds of anywhere between 169-1447!!! 169 down??!!! My upload speeds are a bit better averaging 350 up. I have been taking bandwidth tests daily at all different times of the day and night, and that is pretty much a steady average. I have taken the inhibitor off the coax cable that the guy put on... and there is no change.

I would like to keep this question open for another 48 hours, as it seems like every time I think I have it sorted... well, hahaha!!!

I am still wondering if... is it possible that if someone were to pick up my signal, and gain access to my service, that it would kick me off? Could they get control of the network and therefore not allow me to renew the IP thru my router? Now that I have 'secured' the network (I know, I know.. what I have initiated as far as security, is not really secure)... is it still possible that someone could be draining my access, thereby giving me such low speeds? Comcast claims that they have increased my speed to 4MBs down, and 356kb up... but I have not seen those speeds in ages.

Thanks so much... if you are still reading!
:)
0
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13755854
It is possible that someone is stealing your bandwidth via the wireless, but somewhat unlikely after you changed to use WEP on the wireless. I think there should be a way for you to check what computers are assosciated with the AP and see if there are any others in there.

I doubt that they would be able to kick you out, and certainly changing your IP to the windows default like you were seeing is also very unlikely.

If you really wanted to rule this out you could hardwire into the network and turn off the wireless AP feature, and see if it affects your speed. Just a thought.

But I am glad that you arent getting kicked off anymore!
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13826176
Been a while since I updated so here goes:

I am still getting drops. The Cable company blames the router and Motorola blames Comcast. Comcast says that they are providing access to the house and that is the end of their responsibility. They tell me to go to the router company. Motorola, the router manufacturer says that the ruter is set up properly and there is nothing there that would cause the IP to drop besides a drop or spike in service.

The problem is not as bad as it used to be, though. The serice drops for a few seconds and renews it self in anywhere between 5 seconds and two minutes. It renews the router IP now, and is NOT replaced by the windows default. I have disabled Panda Firewall and configured the router firewall and 64-bit encryption. INEVER see anything else in my networks anymore and whatever was showing up there (05B401972377). It is only MY network that appears and I have changed all the defaults. (SSID, username, passwords..etc)

There are times that I drop service thru the wireless and CAN connect thru hard wire to the router... and there are times that I drop service thru the wireless AND thru hard wire. Most of the times... I need only open the router configuration and hit REFRESH and it is fine again... other times, I need to wait until the service just decides to come back on it's own.

Wired or Wireless, however, the signal level sucks. It is LOW all the time. And that is something that I am SURE has to do with Comcast... but when they have sent someone over (twice) they say they are getting a strong signal thru their tests.

Improvement, yes... but not cured!

:)
0
 

Author Comment

by:karenmarie1963
ID: 13949149
I figured it was about time I closed this topic. It has been quite some time since it began, and the time has come to close it, I think.

I am still get the ramdom access drops. I am beginning to believe that there is something else in the house that might be interferring with it, and not an outsider stealing my service. There are so many wireless things in my house, I am starting to think that this is a distinct possibility.

Anyway, I want to award these points to you, conradie. You were the only one who took the time to respond to me, and I appreciate all the time that you took to try to help me solve this issue.

Thanks so much!

:) KarenMarie
0
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:conradie
ID: 13969085
KarenMarie-

Thanks for the points- sorry its been a while since I last posted! I have been CRAZY at work!! Anyway- glad that the problem is at least better and liveable now. As far as other things in the house interfering with your signal you could be affected by wireless phones, microwaves, bluetooth devices and other WIFI devices. Here is an article you may want to check out:

http://www.wi-fiplanet.com/tutorials/article.php/953511

Anyway, hope you eventually get it completely fixed- that kind of thing is super annoying!!

Bye!
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