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Dell Desktop - Getting to work on home wireless

Posted on 2014-01-25
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
Hi,

(Please excuse the vagueness of this question).

I have a Dell desktop which does not work on my home wireless.  (I have multiple devices working on the wireless).

Do I need to buy any hardware (for the desktop) in order to get my wireless working?

Do I need to install wireless software?
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Question by:Patrick O'Dea
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LVL 88

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rindi earned 500 total points
ID: 39808749
Most desktop PC's don't have any builtin wireless cards, so you will most likely have to get a wireless adapter for it. There are PCI, or PCI Express adapters for internal use, or probably simpler for someone who isn't used to opening a case, USB wireless dongles:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100010074&IsNodeId=1&Description=wlan%20adapter&name=Wireless%20Adapters&Order=BESTMATCH&isdeptsrh=1
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LVL 44

Assisted Solution

by:Darr247
Darr247 earned 500 total points
ID: 39808828
What model and version is your Dell?

What version of windows is it?
If it's Vista, try the FixIt at this KB article - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/928233/

Have you tried updating the firmware in the wireless router?
(What brand/model/version is the wireless router?)
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LVL 5

Assisted Solution

by:Kwoof
Kwoof earned 500 total points
ID: 39808908
In the network and sharing center (assuming win 7 or 8?), click change adapter settings.  You will see if you have a wireless adapter or not.  If so, check to see if it is enabled or disabled. (right-click to change as needed).  If no adapter showing, (and you think there should be), then check your device manager and re-install the drivers as needed.
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LVL 84

Assisted Solution

by:Dave Baldwin
Dave Baldwin earned 500 total points
ID: 39808911
Most of the wireless plug-in cards I've had to deal with don't work all that well because the antenna gets stuck behind the case and often close to the floor.  Best performance is as high as you can get it and USB wireless dongles are much better because you can hang them in the air.  I have one in the next room that is clipped to a wooden yard stick sticking straight up in the air.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Patrick O'Dea
ID: 39809038
Thanks for the suggestions.

I have now bought a plug in "dongle" and 11-year old Thomas is happy with his wireless connection.
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