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Belkin Router Fails Repeatedly

Hello:

I have a Dell 8250 with Windows XP Home providing internet access to an iMac running OS-X 10.2.8 via a Belkin router (F5D7230). The Dell is using Norton Internet Security 2006 for a firewall and antivirus software and accesses the internet via Comcast broadband and an external Comcast-supplied RCA modem.

This is the third Belkin router that I have had fail in two years. I just cannot believe that it is the router, that something else is causing this. (The first router worked for a year and then failed. The second router for 6-8 months, and then failed. The third router failed in only 2 weeks!)

When the router fails, neither the Dell nor the iMac have internet access. Sometimes I can restart the access by rebooting both the router and the modem by unplugging each. However, when I take the router off line (unplug it entirely from the system), I have no internet access problems on the Dell. When I include the router in the system, it works fine for a time. Then I lose internet access on both the Dell and the iMac.

What is going on? It just doesn't seem plausible that it's really been the router each time. Could it be the Norton interfering somehow (though it has not been the same version of Norton, even, this entire time)?

Any leads/suggestions are very welcome!

Thanks.
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belloli
Asked:
belloli
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1 Solution
 
Rob WilliamsCommented:
The only thing on your network that could cause the Belkin to fail is power surges. Perhaps it should be on a UPS (Universal Power Supply) or as a bare minimum, a good surge protector. There are lots or problems that could cause the lost connections but it seems you have verified it is the router. Personally, I have never been a fan of the Belkins, you may want to consider another brand.
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bbrunningCommented:
It's possible that it may be the belkin, but if it IS hooked up to a Surge protector along with the modem you'd think that both may go. If you're not using a surge protector than That's expected to have the router or anything else blow out. I also agree with RobWill that belkins seem to be really fragile routers and the smallest thing will kill them.

P2P programs also cause a lot of issues like this. although you may not have bad hardware...you could be running 1 or more sharing programs while you're online. They cause a lot of router/modem lockups and the only way to fix it is either turn the program off and ride it out or unplug and replug the router power cord.
I've had limewire kill my connection and also the 2 other computers on my network.

If that doesn't work, try a line conditioner or UPS for them on the next try....along with a linksys or netgear router.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
as to surge protectors, it's on a fairly decent one. a $50 or so version purchased with the Dell 3 years or so ago. of course, it's a belkin, too....
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
Their surge protectors are pretty good. Then again voltage drops can only be protected with a UPS. Then again, most equipment today is not that sensitive for a minor drop to cause permanent damage. perhaps just bad router design.
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scrathcyboyCommented:
Give up on these flakeyh Belkin routers and buy a LINKSYS -- they are incredibly cheap, and now that Linksys is owned by Cisco, they are the same great CISCO logic, and less than 1/2 the price.  I find it difficult to believe a router is affected by being plugged directly into a line.  I run mine unprotected all the time with NO problems.  Get them off any power protection you might have, that could be the problem, but more likely it is Belkin, they have gone to cheap stuff lately.  But CISCO quality at less than 1/2 the price, the name is linksys, and a good one is a BEFVP41 -- a GREAT VPN router.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
I'm still not convinced it's the router itself, therefore less likely to be a Belkin problem versus any other router. Seems to me that this strange quirk is likely to be from some configuration problem altogether. Thoughts?...
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
Nothing against Belkin but I am doubtful it is anything else. If it were Symantec or a configuration problem it would take effect immediately not after 12, 6, 1/2 months.
Though I use Both Cisco and Linksys, I don't know that "CISCO quality at less than 1/2 the price" is true, but Linksys routers are as dependable as any other home, off the shelf, makes. For the cost of a router <$35 US I would at least try another.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
I'll probably go the Linksys route next, after I try some configurations this weekend (such as taking Norton down for a bit to see if that allows a connection, etc). I agree it shouldn't be Symantec with the delay, but it still seems odd to me that it would be three bad routers in a row...

belloli
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
Does seem awfully coincidental, but it can happen, especially if same model and batch. Give it a whirl, and let us know how you make out.
--Rob
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bbrunningCommented:
In the field I'm in, it doesn't surprise me that 3 routers of the same model could go bad one after another...trust me, I've seen some wacky stuff happen like that with all sorts of computer products.
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
I agree, I have had 8 of the same drives go. They were all the exact same model, but a couple of different productions. All were less than a year old.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
Okay, it turns out not to be the router. I disabled Norton Internet Security and reinstalled the router on the system. Now both the Dell and iMac have internet access again.

Suggestions for modifications to the settings of Norton to bring this under control?
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
Still doubtful it is Norton. If it were an application why would it happen after a period of time. I suspect it is still a flaky router. When your "re-installed" the router, I assume it was re-booted??? I suspect in time this will happen again.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
I've rebooted the router and the modem many times over the month or so since this crept up again, with never any success (router first, modem first, both simultaneously, etc).

I've switched away from norton to mcafee now and both the dell and the imac have full internet access again. somewhat slower, but full access all the same...
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
As before " I suspect in time this will happen again."
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belloliAuthor Commented:
Okay, but we'll see. Let's see how long before it kicks out, if it does. Then we can assess from there...
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
I've been wrong lots of times before, and I'm willing to bet I will be again, so lets see how it goes, after all "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".  :-)
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belloliAuthor Commented:
indeed. so far it's been almost a week with no hiccups.

the other advantage is that comcast provides the mcafee software for free, so if it causes a problem, at least I'm dealing w/ all the same people, and not the usual scarecrow method of everyone pointing at every which direction...
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
Sounds good.
Personally I don't like Norton products the past couple of years. I find they create more problems than they solve, but that is just my opinion, and I doubt it would cause the router to lock up, but....
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bbrunningCommented:
"Personally I don't like Norton products the past couple of years. "

agreed

The new Norton products cause more pain than they help. Gotta love when clients call me saying they've locked themselves out of the internet.

bbrunning
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
belloli, how has it been working out with McAfee?
--Rob
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bbrunningCommented:
Rob,

He probably locked himself out of the net with McAfee

hehe
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Rob WilliamsCommented:
:-)   I think that would be more likely with Symantec.  
       Just curious as to whether any success.
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belloliAuthor Commented:
linksys router w/ mcafee software has been running fine for the last month or so. seems to have solved the problem. thanks, all...

rb
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