I’ve noticed an annoying inconsistency with laptops that have built-in 802.11B wireless. Particularly when the WAP (wireless access point) uses WPA-PSK… Some will work, while others won’t.
There is no pattern that I can find. It just seems that some chipsets are designed with more “features” than others.
I always make sure that the WAP has both 802.11B and G enabled, but many times, I just need to cross fingers and hope it works.
I had one situation with 2 slightly different ibm thinkpads: both had 802.11B… one worked and one didn’t.
Where was another recent situation, where the wireless router was working, but no one knew the “password” to add more PCs to the wireless network. I couldn’t connect to the router, since someone had changed the admin password.
Since this was a modem and wireless router, a reset to factory defaults would mean getting a new account password from the ISP.
After all that, I setup 2 PCs to work wirelessly over WPA-PSK (and 1 PC works over wired ethernet).
I then find that a laptop (which once worked wirelessly… in fact, for a while, it was the only PC that was capable of accessing the internet), now cannot get to the internet.
At first I’m not surprised: I need to enter the WPA code… but that doesn’t work.
I take it back to the office, and it works well with the usb wireless G adapter, but the builtin wireless card cannot see my office wireless router. Only at that point, I find out that it only has a 802.11B card.
I’ll need to remember to check for this in the future.