Wednesday, January 18, 2017

WiFi Art Thou, Romeo?

Some people swear at Dell and others swear by them.  I have used Dell laptops since I got my first one more than 20 years ago.  Only one gave serious trouble and not until after my youngest had taken it over.  She was sleeping on the couch in our basement with the computer on the coffee table beside her when the battery caught fire. For that she got a brand new upgraded laptop. I have replaced a couple of HD but long before they died and destroyed data.

So when I replaced my 5 year old Dell Inspiron it was with another.  Dell Inspiron 15 7000, model 7559.

As our home is about 5 km from and 50 meters below the town, internet is a problem.  A dial up wireless modem was our final go to after trying a number of other approaches.  Then Tanya and I both got smart phones and needed internet access for them.  For about $100 we bought a Huawei portable wireless receiver and WiFi unit (about 6 X 9 X 1 cm).  Top speed about 2.5 mbps but mostly in the 500 kbps.  Slow but functional.

The WiFi on my new laptop worked when I got it and then suddenly didn't work any more. Not a problem as the Huawei plugged into it via USB to charge the battery and also connect to the internet.  The WiFi not working bothered me no end as someday I may want to take my computer with me and connect someplace.

The Wi-Fi adapter is Intel Dual Band Wireless AC 3165 and according to troubleshooting may have driver problems.  According to Google, everyone with this computer and this adapter is very unhappy with it. Since I bought the computer in Canada, I felt guilty about taking it to my local computer shop (another reason to always buy local) so I turned to the internet.

I use the IT services of Online Tech Solutions, who lives in Delhi. He has saved my butt a few times and he is fair and reasonable in his invoicing. A company, formerly known as E-lance now called Upwork, connects free lance consultants to clients around the world.  Anything that can be done via internet is available.  I have used it to find translators and IT assistance which is how I found OTS.

Here is a link to his company profile: www.upwork.com/agencies/~0183acac3cb6f5ea40. He is currently getting sufficient business from repeat clients that he is not actively looking for new work.

He spent a few fruitless hours trying to rescue the WiFi adaptor and finally gave it up.  Replacing it had not worked well for several people according to Google so he recommended TP-Link N150 Wireless Nano USB Adapter (TL-WN725N) which I picked up today for $12 USD from my local computer shop.  Found and downloaded the driver and utility for Windows 10, installed it and I am away to the races.

When you are a one-horse consultancy, you depend on a great many others to get things done.  Having worked in a large government department where the IT branch was there to 'make sure you could not get the hardware and software you needed' (not quite that bad but sometimes close) I sure appreciate an IT person I can talk to and learn from.

10 comments:

  1. Do you have access to satellite internet? Seems like that might be your answer to fast internet connection.
    the Ol'Buzzard

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    1. I suspect we do. It was the first system we tried 9 years ago. and didn't work worth a damn. The guy who set it up didn't have a clue was my take. Problem here is to find someone who does have a clue about satellite. TV they can do well but internet maybe not.

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  2. An IT person you can trust is worth their weight in gold! I'm glad your connectivity issues are resolved - nothing is more frustrating than an on-again-off-again connection.

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    1. He is an honest man and when he has to learn on the job, he adjusts his time accordingly. The connections still are not perfect but are the fault of the ISP, not my computer. They are better

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  3. I got my start as a freelance writer on Elance, which merged with ODesk to become Upwork. I will always be grateful that I was able to build a portfolio (and my confidence) on there, but the pay is pretty crappy! For those looking for affordable workers, though, it's awesome! I worked in IT for 13 years...here's the funny thing. After I left my job to freelance full-time, I had a Windows PC for a couple of years and got tired of it being broken all the time. So I bought my first MacBook and I haven't had a single problem with it since (knock on wood!). No tech support necessary. It just works.

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    1. Thanks for dropping by my blog. On Elance/Uplink, you are competing with people all over the world, where USD buys a great deal more than in North America or Europe.Two of my kids have Macs and are very happy. The other two and I are still with PCs, troubles and all. Cost is a factor.

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  4. I too also heard about this upwork. Thanks for the information shared. Let me have a try on it...

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    1. Thanks for dropping by and commenting. I hope you find what you are looking for on Upwork.

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  5. I need to get something to up my net speed but not sure there is anything that will work ...can that be done?

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    1. Depends on why it is slow. How are you connected to the internet? What speeds is it capable of? Do you have malware? There are maintenance programs for your computer. System Mechanic is one I have used for years. I think there is a free version but I use the Pro which is $30/yr. I also have a good malware program Malwarebytes Anti-Malware. There is a free version but I use the Pro given my location in the middle of malware ally.

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