Getting wireless internet in our little home has proven to be much, much more difficult than the TV commercials would tell you. Oh, the cable installation was easy. A nice guy name Jorge or Jose or Mario (I can’t for the life of me remember which) came to my door. Since he was nice even when I tried to convince him that the antenna in the wall was actually the cable port, I figured he’d do a good job. And I was right. He worked almost totally in silence for 45 minutes, then handed me an ethernet cord to plug into my computer. It worked. The very first time. And it was fast (Lightening McQueen fast).
I discovered a small hitch within about 30 minutes–every time I wanted to change computers, I had to reset the cable modem. But since that takes all of about 20 seconds, it wasn’t such a bad deal.
Later that evening, Dave came home from class. He plugged his computer into the network and…nothing. Nada. His computer simply would not acknowledge that it was plugged into the fastest wireless network this side of the Brea Mall. I fussed with it. I futzed with it. I even called tech support and stayed on the line for thirty minutes to have them tell me to call Dell, the makers of the computer. At that point (and only at that point), Dave remembered that someone at work had reset the computer so it would plug into the network there. They could reverse it, no problem.
So we surfed to our hearts’ content on my computer all weekend. The wireless router was in the mail and we could watch videos online again, so we were happy as clams (why, by the way, are clams said to be so happy?)
Last Monday or Tuesday (as in, not two days ago but the week before that), the router came. There was much rejoicing. I took it home to install it, and there were many tears. (I should enter a short caveat here–when mechanical things don’t work, I fall apart. As in, sob for an hour while I try to just make it function, already. I’d say more, but that’s another post.) In the end, we still had no wireless network. In addition, Dave’s newly reset computer was still refusing to speak to the network. It was a bad night, folks.
In the end, I put the router back in its box to await Dave’s friend Joe, who is much more fluent in ‘network’ than I am. I’m a beginner–I still have to look all the words I don’t know up on Google. Joe’s a master. But Master Joe couldn’t come until this week (until tomorrow, in fact).
For some reason, last night I decided to try again, just one more time. There were a couple of variables I wasn’t sure about, but I must have put the right numbers in the right boxes and left the right cables plugged in because it worked. To my utter astonishment, we had a wireless network. I was so amazed that I started testing it. It worked on Dave’s computer. It worked on the Mac!!
With great glee, I unplugged my computer from the router (it has to be plugged in, apparently, to talk to the router). I clicked on our network…and then watched my computer refuse to connect. Yup, the computer I set the network up on wouldn’t connect. Riiiiiiight.
I messed around with it for a while, looked up the error messages on the lovely Google, but none of the things that usually cause people to have this particular problem applied to me. Great. Looks like Joe has to make the trip down here anyway. And we have to feed him. On Ash Wednesday, the same day we’re going vegetarian for Lent. Oh, this does not bode well for poor, carnivorous Joe.
At the end of all of this, we have:
- one (1) Dell laptop that will only connect wirelessly
- one (1) Dell laptop that will only connect through ethernet
- one (1) MacBook Pro that will connect either way.
Please note the lack of comments regarding the proficiency of Macs vs. PCs.