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Hi, I'm new here. I am having a MAJOR issue! I normally use SBC Yahoo DSL at my home, with a normal DSL modem connected to my Dell laptop. My laptop came with a wireless card already installed, however, so that I may use it away from home in hotels.

Now here is where I am having the problem.

I have been staying with my inlaws for the last 2 weeks while taking care of one just out of surgery. They have Cox cable internet. Friends have advised me not to connect my laptop to their cable modem for the risk that it will mess up their internet connection. So I have been accessing the internet via my wireless internet card.

My computer has always detected an open-access wireless network near their house somewhere, and as far as I can tell, it is from the McDonald's down the street (they have wireless network access at their stores now). And up until today, I have had no problems using the internet. But today, it suddenly quit working. I try to sign in to both Yahoo and MSN, and neither one will connect. It says there is a problem with my connection settings or internet service. Normally it connects the minute I turn on the computer.
Now here's the weirdest part: it is still connected to the detected wireless network. It shows I AM connected to the wireless network, but it isn't letting me connect to any internet service providers/browsers.

Is there something I have missed about my connection that I need to change? Or would I be able to connect using my inlaws' cable modem? We want to be able to both be online together, but it seems impossible without the wireless access or without a router.

How can I solve the wireless problem? I need my internet access working, especially at night, so that my husband can still contact me(he is in Iraq in the Army). Please help me...

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Last Post by zelkea
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They have Cox cable internet. Friends have advised me not to connect my laptop to their cable modem for the risk that it will mess up their internet connection.

It probably won't do anything to their setup, but you might have to reconfigure your computer to get it to work, as DSL and Cable often use different connectivity protocols (PPPoE vs DHCP, to be specific) and DSL providers often require installing special connectivity software on your computer. Even so, plugging your computer in to the cable modem shouldn't change the cable connection; the worst that would happen is that it won't work with your computer.

If you do try it, do it in this order:
* Turn off the modem and the computers.
* Unplug their computer from the modem and connect yours.
* Turn on the modem first; let it go through its startup "dance" and stabilize (usually, most of the lights on the modem will turn solid green a that point).
* Turn on your computer, let it boot fully, and then try to connect to the Internet.

My computer has always detected an open-access wireless network near their house somewhere, and as far as I can tell, it is from the McDonald's down the street...

Troubleshooting connection problems involving someone else's WiFi network is often a frustrating and futile endeavor, as you have no knowledge of (or control over) what's happening on the business end of that network. Among other possibilities, lax network security (which has now been tightened up) may have allowed you to connect before, but we've no way of really knowing what has changed.

Now here's the weirdest part: it is still connected to the detected wireless network. It shows I AM connected to the wireless network, but it isn't letting me connect to any internet service providers/browsers.

Not weird at all; that's actually quite common. Joining a WiFi network only means that you've been allowed to establish a wireless communication link with that network's wireless access device; it does not mean that you have also been granted passage to that network's Internet gateway device. Getting that Internet access often demands passing other security checkpoints within the network's structure.

We want to be able to both be online together, but it seems impossible without the wireless access or without a router.

That's correct; specifically- you need a router in order to connect more than one computer at a time to normal residential Cable or DSL services.

How can I solve the wireless problem? I need my internet access working...

If the Internet access is important enough, being able to connect both computers at the same time is the most desirable situation, and connecting your computer directly to their modem won't work, you'll need to buy a wireless router (they're relatively inexpensive and easy to install).

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One additional note... Your Yahoo DSL connection uses a Static IP address where Cox uses DHCP. So write down the IP address, gateway, dns, etc before you enable DHCP so you don’t have any problem connecting when you get home.

1. Right click and select properties on "Network Connections"
2. Double click on Internet Protocol TCP/IP
3. Copy down IP, Subnet, Gateway, and DNS ip addresses.
4. Click "Obtain an IP address automatically"

If you do not want to go out and spend the money on a router follow these steps.

1. Unplug the cable modem for at least 5 seconds
2. Plug the network cable into your machine
3. Click Start->Run-> type in cmd press enter or ok
4. type in ipconfig /release then ipconfig /renew
5. You can skip steps 3-5 if you reboot but it is faster to run the ipconfig command

You will need to complete the above steps again when you want to hook up your in-laws computer again.

AJZ.

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