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Internet, Networking, and Wireless Discussion of networking, internet, and wireless including Apple's Airport products.

MacBook - Macbook won't pick up wireless networks unless 2 feet from base station


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necoleman

 
Member Since: Aug 20, 2009
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I have a black Macbook running OSX 10.5.8. I also have an Airport Extreme base station.

For the past few days, my computer will not acknowledge a wireless network is present unless it is within 2 feet of the base station. If it is within 2 feet, the signal strength is perfect and the internet functions like normal. I also used to be able to see my neighbors wireless networks under the Airport menu but those are all gone now too.

I have reset my Airport Extreme, confirmed that it is broadcasting at 100% transmit power, unplugged Airport overnight, anything I could think of. So far nothing has helped at all.

I am going to school in Grenada, West Indies so I am not close to any Apple stores or anything for help. This problem sprung up overnight and I did not install or un-install anything prior to the problem developing.
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cwa107

 
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Was the machine dropped by chance? It sounds a lot like a wireless adapter with its antenna(s) disconnected.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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necoleman

 
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No I did not drop it. I flew with it in my backpack on Friday but it was fine from Saturday until Monday.

Is there any way I can check the antenna on the wireless adapter myself?
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cwa107

 
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You would need to disassemble the machine to do that. Instructions are available here:

Installing MacBook Core Duo Airport Card - iFixit

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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necoleman

 
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Thank you so much for your help. Since I'm in Grenada until Christmas, I'm reluctant to disassemble my computer just in case something went wrong. Under System Profiler, my computer does acknowledge my Airport card. Would that be that way if the antenna was in fact disconnected?
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Yes, it would still show up as the antennas are separate from the logic board, which is where the card itself mounts to the system.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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necoleman

 
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I guess I'll just deal with the inconvenience until December and then I'll take it to an Apple store when I'm in the states. Thank you for your help and if you think of any other ideas, please let me know.
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