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Until last friday I had been successfully using wifi using a Linksys WRT 54G router. My ISP is Virgin and I am using a Motorola SB 4200 cable Modem

I have three laptops and an EPSON 510W printer connected wirelessly and this had been running with no issue for about 3 years.

Back to last friday, we started suffering significant delays and then the network collapsed with no wireless access. I was able to connect a single laptop direct to the cable modem and internet access was restored to just that one device.

I thought that the problem was the router so I tried a backup D-Link device with no success. I have subsequently bought another cable modem AND a netgear router plus additional ethernet cables but with no success. The best that happens is that the signal appears good but I cannot get access to the internet. A yellow question mark appears on the 'gradient' icon.

Each laptop and router works elsewhere so I'm stumped. Mind you I am a real novice so I'm not surprised. Please can anyone tell me what I'm doing wrong?

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How many other wireless networks can you see when you view the list of networks to connect to? How far away from the router are the devices when you try to connect them? Do they work if you move right beside the router (distance 1-2 feet)? Can you connect via ethernet cable to the router and get Internet access? – Darth Android Nov 13 '12 at 22:08
thanks for getting back to me . I can see ny own limited access network And two others belonging to mky neighbours. one of the laptops is adjacent to the router but no change and when I do connect direct to the cable modem usng the ethernet cable i get internet access but not if I link to the router by ethernet cable. – Jeff King Nov 13 '12 at 23:22
You can't 'just' swap a cable modem out without telling an ISP. I do believe the connection is 'locked' into your mac address – Journeyman Geek Nov 14 '12 at 0:49
I have contacted the Virgin 'help line' (Not very) Luckily I still have the original cable modem and have reconnected it (although both cable modems did allow a laptop to access the internet once connected direct via an ethernet cable. I'm going to have to call in an expert I fear. – Jeff King Nov 14 '12 at 2:28
  • Start with all devices unpowered for a minute.

  • Connect the router to the cable modem, using the correct 'internet port' on the router.

  • Power up the modem, wait a minute, power up the router.

  • Connect a single PC to one of the other ports on the router.

  • Internal check: In a browser, navigate to the routers config page, normally or and check that is working.

  • External check: Next open a 'Command Prompt' window, type 'ping' and see if you get a response.

  • DNS check: In the same 'Command Prompt' window, type 'ping' and see if you get a response.

  • If all is working, repeat with but connected to the router by wiress.

share|improve this answer
traceroute might work better than ping here - since it tells you where the connection is mucked up – Journeyman Geek Nov 14 '12 at 0:46

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