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Wireless home network mystery attached device

Posted on 2006-04-11
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I am using WEP encryption (because Tivo doesn't support WPA) with a Netgear router.

I have a device under "attached devices" that I don't recognize and don't know how to remove.  It is not the mac address of the desktop or the tivo.  In addition, I added the laptop mac address to the "attached devices" but it doesn't show up, only the mystery mac address, desktop, and tive  does.

Any thoughts?
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Question by:kellyputty
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by:b0lsc0tt
ID: 16429341
kellyputty,

If you have the option then enable MAC filtering and set it to allow only the addresses you enter.  You probably can't "kick" a device off but this way you could deny any device that you don't explicitly allow.

This may not be the problem but make sure that the laptop address you added was for the wireless network card and not for the ethernet card.  The laptop probably has both connections and each will have a seperate MAC address.

b0lsc0tt
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by:kellyputty
ID: 16429383
I have run, I will check that in a couple of hours and get back to you.  thanx
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by:nprignano
ID: 16429868
>>In addition, I added the laptop mac address to the "attached devices" but it doesn't show up, only the mystery mac address, desktop, and tive  does.

sounds like you are looking at the MAC of the wireless network connection, but trying to enter the Ethernet MAC - like b0lscott is saying, there are two MACs, you need to be sure you have the right one.  Unless you used a default network key or you live near a hacker (or a bored teenager) you probably don't have to worry about the "mystery" MAC being from a device that is not inside your network.


nprignano
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by:b0lsc0tt
ID: 16430032
kellyputty,

Nprignano's comment reminded me of a feature that has become very common that can add to your security.  If possible, disable SSID broadcast and do not use the default ID or something really common, like home or default.  You may already be doing this but the "bored teenager" reminded me of the easy to use security feature.  Hopefully TIVO does not require the router to broadcast or use a generic ID for it to find the device.
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by:zephyr_hex (Megan)
ID: 16431788
there is a free program called Look@LAN that will show all devices on your network, IP address and OS.

http://www.majorgeeks.com/LookLAN_d3365.html

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by:kellyputty
ID: 16432267
The mac address is the wireless card not the ethernet, I did an ipconfig to check.

I do think the mystery mac is the wirless network.

I attached the mac of the wireless card of the lap top.  However, I still can't seem to connect to my wireless network.
any suggestions?

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by:nprignano
ID: 16432419
are you using the widows wireless client or one that came with the card?

nprignano
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by:b0lsc0tt
ID: 16432590
kellyputty,

Check that the encryption key is entered correctly.  You will probably have to reenter it since you can not normally view the key after it is entered.  Because of its length it could have been entered incorrectly and that would cause this problem.

Is the laptop even connecting to the router?  Check the IP address and gateway to see.  From your description it sounds like it is not but I wanted to confirm.

Can you test the wireless card on another network?  Does it work on a different wireless network?
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by:kellyputty
ID: 16432989
I connect to the neighbor's wireless network fine. ( I am using it now)

I am using the windows wireless client.

I don't think this laptop is connected to the router.  Is there a client that can help me do that?
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b0lsc0tt earned 2000 total points
ID: 16438133
kellyputty,

You don't need a seperate program to connect to your wireless router than what you are using to connect to the neighbor's.  Since you can connect to other wireless networks that means that the problem should not be driver or hardware related.

If you have already made sure that the laptop is not being filtered by the router's MAC filtering security settings then I would check the encryption key.  Try reentering the key.  Are you sure that you have the correct key?  In other words are you looking at the key setting in the router to verify or at a written copy of the key.

What IP address is the computer using?  Compare that to the desktop's IP and network settings and let us know what is different or what they are.

If you still have a problem then we can try to disable all security features on the router (i.e. mac filtering, wep encrytion), enable broadcast SSID (if disabled), and see if the laptop can see the network and connect.  You would not want to do this permanently.  If you get connected then you would enable each option one at a time to see if one causes a problem.
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Author Comment

by:kellyputty
ID: 16438420
Thank you.  The problem seemed to be that I needed to set the WEP encryption to "Open Access" so that the laptop would ask for the key.  Once it asked, it was able to acquire the network address.

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by:b0lsc0tt
ID: 16438455
kellyputty,

Thanks for the fun question, the grade and the points.  Glad to hear it is working.
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