Thursday, October 16, 2008

ThinkPad XP SP3 Wi-Fi

Remember the ThinkPad T42 I bought last year? It's still running XP and doing fine, thank you.

I run 802.11g throughout the house and the T42 came with a 802.11b mini-PCI card. I found a P/N 91p7301 on eBay for less than $5. Swapping it out wasn't trivial but I did it and it works fine.

I had installed Windows XP SP3 on a number of systems and had had NO problems.


After I finished the SP3 install and rebooted, the network wouldn't connect. It just sat there saying it was trying to get an IP address. Of course I tried "Repair" but no change.

Interestingly, if I left the wireless NIC trying to connect and connected the wired NIC to the router, the wireless NIC got an IP address and all was well.

I got another laptop and began Googling it. I found a couple of hits here and here. I wasn't alone.

It seems to be pretty specific to the particular chip set that's in that Wi-Fi card. The suggestions were to set the services "Extensible Authentication Protocol Service" and "Network Access Protection Agent" to "Automatic" and reboot.

That worked.

Oh, I don't use ThinkPad's "Access Connection" nor nLite.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Disappearing Task Manager

Have you had the problem I've had where Windows' Task Manager "disappears" when you minimize to the system tray. Yeah, I've got all the items checked under Options but it just disappears when you minimize it.

The only way I'd found to make it work as it should has been to reboot. I don't like to reboot so that wasn't acceptable to me.

The other day I Googled it one more time.

I found it. A couple of screens down in the Google results was this forum post.

f0dder's answer was so simple. I should have thought of this myself.

To solve it, bring up the task manager, *exit* it instead of minimizing, and re-start... at least that works for me.