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HP Notebook PCs - Wireless Internet Connection is Intermittent or Slow (Windows XP)
The wireless network connection may be intermittent or very slow. Also, it may take longer than expected to connect to the wireless network.
This document identifies the most common causes of slow and intermittent performance for wireless connections, and provides possible solutions. The methods in this document are helpful for troubleshooting a small, private wireless network in a home or apartment, and they assume you have access to the various wireless routers and receivers.
Before You Begin
Windows XP Service Pack 3 and all of the latest updated HP drivers must be installed on the PC before performing these actions. To determine what operating system and service pack is installed, click Start, click Help & Support, click My HP Computer in the left column, and click the System information option.
See HP PCs - Updating Drivers and Software with Windows Update for additional information.
Method 1: Check connection speed
Most ISPs provide tools that allow you to test their internet connection speeds. The tools send a large packet of information from one computer to another and determine how long it takes for the information to come back to the starting point. You should run the test before and after you make any changes for two reasons.
Method 2: Minimize interference from other wireless devices within your home
Inside your home, or small office, interference from other wireless devices such as a microwave, cordless phone or cell phone, or other wireless networks on the same or similar frequency, can cause connections problems.
Perform these steps to test and correct a problem:
Method 3: Remove interference from other wireless networks
When multiple wireless networks are operating in your neighborhood, there will be signal conflicts. The wireless device may have trouble identifying a single network.
Perform these steps to test and correct a network conflict problem:
Method 4: Reduce network traffic
Data transfer speed decreases when additional computers are accessing the network or ISP. This is most noticeable when one or more people are doing load-intensive activities like downloading videos and music files, or listening to streaming network radio.
Perform these steps to test and correct a network traffic problem:
Method 5: Remove malicious software
Every computer connected to the internet is exposed to a significant number of viruses, worms, and other malicious software. Your HP notebook PC was shipped with a trial version of the Norton Internet Security anti-virus software.
Perform these steps to scan for and remove malicious software:
NOTE: If you choose to install and run anti-virus software from a different security company, follow the instructions that came with that software. Skip this method.
For additional information on dealing with malicious software, see the HP document Spyware tools you shouldn't be without .
Method 6: Reinstall wireless device drivers
The wireless device drivers may be corrupted or the properties are not set correctly. Use the steps below to uninstall and reinstall the wireless device drivers.
Manually delete and reinstall the device drivers.
HP recommends that you check for and install updated drivers and software for your wireless network. See HP and Compaq Desktop PCs - HP Software Update .
Method 7: Verify ISP modem and network are functioning properly
An ISP serving multiple people in a neighborhood over the same cable will experience a performance decrease as additional computers access the service. Most ISP systems are slower in the early evening when more people are home to check their email and web surf. An interruption in data service on the ISP, such as a power outage, can cause your network to stop even though the status lights on the modem and router appear normal. This is a very common problem with cable ISPs.
If the network suddenly stops working or becomes very slow, even when the connection appears to be enabled, perform these steps to test and correct a problem.