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My desktop PC is plugged in to a Linksys 310N, and there's a Linksys 320N in the next room as the house access point. Both are running DD-WRT. The 310N reports Wireless signal strength around 40%.

Every now and then, I lose my connection entirely, for a few seconds. I've confirmed that it's the bridge by telnetting to the 310N and pinging the 320N. The telnet continues to work, but the ping does not.

When this happens, my wireless mouse also flakes out, getting very choppy for a few seconds. I was thinking interference. But we don't own a microwave oven or a cordless house phone. We're in a house, not an apartment, so I'd think their emissions would be weak by the time they reach me.

How can I diagnose this issue?

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3 Answers 3

The fact that the wireless mouse also flakes out during these instances is strongly suggestive that it is an overall interference issue. Tracing this kind of issue is notoriously hard, I'm afraid. A cordless phone in a house next to yours can be enough to stomp all over your frequencies.

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It could even simply be down to electrical noise in the wiring in the house! (Try turning the lights off!) –  Shinrai Aug 31 '10 at 17:00

To double check other wireless connections you can use inSSIDer This will not determine any other interference, but it's a start.

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This program is awesome! There are 3 other networks in my neighborhood, all on channel 1. Sad. –  Jay Bazuzi Sep 2 '10 at 1:45

This definitely sounds like an interference problem. However, since you are using wireless bridges, you can always build a basic parabolic antenna to direct the signal toward the next hop, and boost your signal to try to cut through it.

http://www.freeantennas.com/projects/template/ provides a good template for one, and explains why it works.

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