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I got this old MacBook from my son. The wireless internet shuts down. Is it possible that it happens because my battery is dead? (deceased) It works fine for about a half hour, then when it gets hot it refuses to stay on line.

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Is it a Macbook Air? If so, do you hear your fan blowing? If not, your fan may be defect. If you hear it blowing, does it get really hot? And are you getting the rainbow wheel a lot? If it gets hot und you get the rainbow wheel you may indeed have a heat issue. Macbook Airs are known for heat issues... (search discussions.apple.com) –  Greg Joshner Jun 8 '10 at 19:20
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You can test to see if the heat is causing the problem, by placing the laptop in your refrigerator. I know it sounds crazy, but it keeps your computer cool. If your wireless still dies even when the computer is not hot then it's not heat related.
If it is, then ensure you aren't blocking any fans.

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Sounds like a heat related issue as you suspect. You can download smcFancontrol to see internal temps and fan speed. Check if the fan has malfunctioned.

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