My laptop is acting wacky.

Discussion in 'Technical Discussion' started by Aerosol, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    There's a few problems with this thing. First, the wifi was giving me problems. Random DNS errors that using Google's DNS server didn't fix. My Xbox and phone connected to the router/modem fine, so I knew the problem wasn't there. I started using the Ethernet port to connect to the internet since it wasn't giving me any problems. Until now. Now I'm experiencing these same DNS errors using LAN too. Restarting the router/modem works, but not always permanently. Infact, I'm copying this post in case submitting it craps out on me.

    Then there's the issue of my laptop slowing to a crawl after I defragmentated the hard drive. Did I do something wrong? I used a program called AusLogics Disk Defrag (after some research) to do the job. It was recommended by various people and sources, so I went with it. I wanted to find something better than the disk defragger that comes with XP. Now my computer takes 3-4x as long to boot to the login screen, audio is scratchy for no apparent reason, and the laptop overall just seems....slower.

    Help me out?
     
  2. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    You're lucky dude, sometimes defragers can really malfuction and actually corrupt and damage the entire file system.

    Reformat and reinstall. Sounds like things are really messed up at the point and might be of a headache to fix. Driver issues everywhere it sounds like the 3rd party defragger made it worse. You could have alot more problems under the surface because of that. Don't use that defragger with that computer atleast.
     
  3. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    Yea I was hoping to avoid that...I don't have anything but DVDs to back up my shit to...

    Well at the very least, the hdd is only 40GB. That's, what. 8 DVDs? If it was filled to the brim?
     
  4. LocalH

    LocalH

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    Probably less, since you'll still have to reinstall applications, you won't need to back up the Windows or Program Files folders. I'd be surprised if you had more than 30GB of actual data and installation files that would need backing up.
     
  5. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Pretty much this and doing so frequently enough (as needed) makes these kind of diasters less damaging should things really go wrong in the future. Some of your user files could easily be corrupted from the 3rd party defragger and might not be noticed until you access them in the future.


    System files (you never need to back this up usaully, but your system will get them back when you re-install, don't forget to install all updates and OEM drivers because the Windows ones are sometimes shit, this is easy as going to the manufacture's website for a specific peice of hardware and downloading), defrag with Windows XP defragger when you're done here, but don't add your user files yet use disk clean up utilities and clear temp folders. You should include anti-virus and anti-spyware here as I consider them system files.

    Program files (the programs you use, just back up any installer you cannot redownload). Defrag again, clean up again.

    User files (the stuff like your documents, music, videos, photos, etc.) Add back last, defrag one last time.

    Should run fast after that if done carefully.

    NOTES: Clean up before defrag. You can run the built-in XP defragger a couple of times to consilidate files a little more (it's only marginal at best but it won't defrag any better but may move files to a faster part). The more full a hard drive is the more it gets really fragmented so consider a bigger drive if this happens alot.
     
  6. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    In the end I didn't back up anything. File copying took ridiculously long and I just had no patience for it. I didn't lose much, anyhow. Nothing that I can't just get back.

    Here's the weirdest part, though. Wifi works again, just not on my home network. I tried it at McDonald's and Starbucks, no problem. I even put my phone into Wifi hotspot mode and used that (though it was painfully slow). It's still not working with my home network though. Weird.
     
  7. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Those are public networks and are often not secured. Just find the name of your wireless router in your home when you scan for hotspots, re-enter the security information like the encryption type, the passphrase or key on the laptop. It should reconnect you.

    Make sure the radio transmitter is working and your antenia not by anything to cause interference. Check your router settings to make sure wi-fi is enabled.
     
  8. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    I'm connected. I'm just getting DNS errors. I would't know how to check the radio transmitter apart from taking the laptop apart and....I really don't want to do that.

    EDIT: Scratch that. I just plugged out the ethernet cable and let the laptop reconnect over wifi by itself. No more DNS errors. Fucking hell.
     
  9. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Bad cable or loose cable? LOL. Did you check the other end or move it around a little. You could get a better driver if you know the name and model of wireless card from the manufacture website... Creat a system restore point before installing the OEM driver. You probally have a generic Windows one if you're missing something fuctionatitivity or features.
     
  10. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    When I was still on XP, I had Dell's drivers for the wifi. Everything worked until one day I just kept getting DNS errors over wifi. So I plugged in the ethernet cable and all was well till I got DNS errors over LAN too. Then I defragged and everything went wacko. Fast forward to yesterday. I formatted and installed 7. The wifi worked at McDonald's and Starbucks. Tried it on my home network, and nothing. So I plugged in the ethernet cable and just figured the wireless card was shot. Mind you, I hadn't installed any OEM drivers at this point. I just now took out the ethernet cable to test the wifi again, and I'm not getting any DNS errors.
     
  11. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Windows 7 has a different archicture then XP in alot of ways and you often to discrimite between x86 (32-bit drivers) and x64 (64-bit drivers) more often then you do with XP (being as 64-bit support wasn't big back then). Vista drivers *usually* work on 7 but not all the time. I would check the ethernet cable drivers, it most likely something is going on there.

    I would focus more on the card brand that's actually in there then the brand of the laptop.

    And yes it could be going bad.
     
  12. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    For what though? Everything's working. Now.

    A quick perusal of the Dell website doesn't reveal who makes the wifi module in the Latitude D430 either. I'm going to leave it alone, though. I'll be replacing this laptop relatively shortly, and building a desktop PC soon after.
     
  13. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    If things are working now, then no more work is really needed and building a good desktop PC will run circles around the laptop in terms of performace.
     
  14. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    But of course. That's the point man! Just gotta keep an eye on prices and Newegg deals to get the most out of my dollar.
     
  15. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    B-B-BUMP!

    So I got the newish laptop and guess what? I'm still getting DNS errors out the wazoo. I tend not to believe in coincidences.

    I never touched the router/modem settings, so what gives? Is the problem on the ISPs end?
     
  16. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Reset all your modem devices with a pen in the back and re-enter the information. Make sure nothing is cycling (a failing modem or router). You can call your ISP and they give you the information you need.

    ISP itself Maybe... You don't have Comcrap do you?

    If you're using a DSL modem you may have a faulty device connected to the line or sometimes a jack or phone line running through the house goes bad and causes shit loads of problems (the former is easy to check for, the later requires a techinician to come out and found the problem and costs money to fix). Make sure you have filters connected to all devices but not your modem.
     
  17. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    I've resetted the modem several times before. No dice. But I'll try it again and give Bright House a call.
     
  18. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    Couple of possiblities to rule out:
    Cable speeds are unpredictable and full of hick-ups. Because unlike DSL, the entire area shares a connection through one wire such as your entire neighborhood, though it may eventually run into seperate lines for Television somewhere else. You're devices could be assigned all different IPs from the ISP and not the modem, nat firewall type router could help you share one ISP address with several devices without conflicts on a home network. Set it to low if you have a game device and use portforwarding.

    EDIT: Make sure no two devices share the same name.

    For labtop, put your name and than laptop. Username-Laptop
    For that desktop, put your name than desktop. Username-Desktop
    For a second laptop or desktop, put your name than... Username-System-Type-Back-Up or a number like 2, 3, etc.

    Organizing these things helps alot.
     
  19. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    They sent a technician out. Long story short, the technician that came out to set this shit up in the first place didn't finish the job.
     
  20. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    There is alot of incompetent techinicians out there. Our DirecTV installer failed to secure the dish tightly and a bird lands on and then another one had to come out just as we switching back from Comcast. Just learn how their system works a little and you can fudge them over minor annoyances. Most of those companies hire contracters to do the work, so there is alot of incompetent people out there. Its like hiring an idiot for the job.