Wifi Troubleshooting Guide


Revision as of 10:29, 8 January 2011 by (Talk)
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Is the wifi hotspot dot visible?

In the Neighborhood View, you should clearly see your wifi hotspot's network name. If you cannot see the network name...

When we took the OLPC computer to our Granddaughter the neighborhood view would not display the home WiFi router (D-Link DIR-655). We could log onto unsecured routers in the housing area, but not the D-link. The Wpa.sh script (http://wiki.laptop.org/go/WPA_Manual_Setting#Option_4:_Manual_Script) did not solve the problem. After trying many items we decided to try re-configuring the D-Link DIR-655. The D-Link was set for 802.11n and not channel 1, 6 or 11. Once we set the DIR-655 for both 802.11g & 802.11n plus set the channel for 11 it worked perfectly.

If you can't see your WiFi router, try the following steps: 1) Configure the router to support 802.11g 2) Configure the router to use Channel 11 (or 1, 6) 3) Use the Wpa.sh script to automate the pass-phrase login.

hidden SSID

Is your SSID/Network Name Hidden? This makes it impossible (currently) for the XO to connect to your wireless network through the Sugar UI. It is possible to connect manually by typing commands in Terminal.

Butting in... I’m having difficulty applying the old terminal hack for hidden SSIDs to the new build. Is there a new method to deal with SSIDs? Am I just doing it wrong? I'm having the same problem.

access point not in channels 1, 6 or 11.

Is your access point working on another channel (not in 1, 6 or 11)? For some (old) builds the XO expects to find access points in one of these three channels (by the way, these are the three non interfering channels available to 802.11g). Try changing your access point to one of the three and check if you can associate your XO to it.

access point restricted to certain MAC addresses

Does your access point have a white list of MAC addresses? To learn the MAC address of your XO laptop, go to term, then run ifconfig. Make sure that if your access point is restricted to a white list of MAC addresses, make sure your laptop's MAC address is on the list.

Why can't the XO browse when connected?

Symptom: I can connect, but I cannot browse/search any pages.

Most likely, the XO has failed to receive DNS information from your internet access point. If this is the case, you would be able to access the Internet for sites named directly with IP addresses but not their common names. In other words, would work but http://www.google.com/ would not.

Verify what the XO has received (from the Internet access point) for DNS information by using the Browse activity and looking at this URL:


This page should show the IP address of the DNS server assigned by the Internet access point. If there isn't an IP address on this page, or if the IP address assigned is wrong, this would account for the behavior you're seeing.

If there is no IP address, or the address is wrong, you'll need to determine why the Internet access point is failing to supply one, but this is likely to be misconfiguration of the access point.

What common wireless symptoms do users report?

  • I cannot associate to an Access Point from the mesh view. (The symptom is usually a flashing circle icon where the rim of the circle never turns white—this indicates the XO is trying to connect, but the connection fails.)
  • I associate but I have no connectivity; or I cannot access the Internet from the browser in my XO.
  • The window disappears, the Access Point's circle starts blinking and after some time, the windows is displayed again.
  • The network indicator is dark even though in the terminal I get an on reading for the radio. No network access points or other users appear in the Sugar interface.
  • I see my router (a Fritz!Box Fon WLAN 7270), but succeed in logging in on only about 1 in 5 to 10 attempts. When I succeed things work fine: i have upgraded the OS, surfed the web, etc.
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