3Gstore Tech Corner #4: Is Your Laptop's WiFi On?

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Tuesday, 06 April 2010

tech corner


One of the many benefits to shopping at is the unrivaled technical support our tech team offers. The mobile broadband experts at 3Gstore have helped countless customers solve a wide variety of issues, and in our Tech Corner series we'll be featuring interesting problems our customers have called us for help with, the solutions our team provided, and some simple advice for you to avoid the same problem!


 "No Networks Available" Error - is Your WiFi On?

The Problem: 3Gstore's tech support team occassionally receives calls from Cradlepoint/Kyocera/Linksys router users reporting that they can't connect their laptops to the router via WiFi. When they try to connect, they see an error message that says "No Networks Available" - even though the router is on and working and well within range of the laptop in question.

3Gstore's Solution: Once our tech team has confirmed that the aircard and router are working properly, the attention is turned to the laptop itself. Many people aren't aware that their laptop has a physical on/off switch for its internal WiFi receiver, often on the side or front of the laptop. If this switch has been flipped to the "off" position by mistake, your network manager will tell you that there aren't any routers to connect to - simply because the laptop's WiFi receive isn't on to "see" them! By flipping or sliding that switch to the "on" position, the laptop will be able to scan for WiFi networks again and the router will show up as an available network to connect to. 

wifi on/off on laptops
Many Windows laptops have physical buttons/switches to turn the WiFi receiver on and off - if yours is set to "off", you won't be able to connect to any WiFi networks! Above are a few examples of what these switches look like on a variety of laptops.

Our Advice: If you know your router is in range of your computer, but your computer is telling you there are no networks available, check to make sure your WiFi is on! You may have flipped the switch accidentally (or if you've never used WiFi on your laptop before, it may have been off by default when you bought it). Sometimes what seems like a frustratingly complicated issue can be as simple as flipping a switch!

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 07 April 2010 )
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