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wireless mini PCI compatability (now with PICS)

Discussion in 'Computers, Games, Electronics etc' started by GSRCRXsi, Jan 14, 2007.

  1. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    ok so i took my laptop apart to fix the power jack. this was my first time taking a laptop apart, got instructions off the internet so i didnt screw it up.

    anyway, while i was in there, i noticed the 56k modem in there hooked through a mini PCI slot. so i did some digging to see if i could swap in a wireless card (since i just broke the notebook card from dropping the laptop on that side, and an internal card would look much cleaner)

    im looking at these:

    eBay: COMPAQ HP 802.11 54G MINI PCI WIRELESS CARD 326685-001 (item 270053818881 end time Feb-08-07 16:31:14 PST)
    Dell IBM Compaq Laptop notebook 802.11b/g Wireless Card: 326685-001 laptopbroker

    now im sure they will work physically (may have to do some trimming they look a little taller then the 56k modem) but im not sure what else i would need. do these things have antennas? or is the antenna built into the card? what about software? im new to "modding" computers, lol

    planning on putting this into my compaq Evo n600c laptop.
     
  2. Sabz5150

    Sabz5150 FALCON PUNCH!!!

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    First question you need to ask is do you have antennas for the card. If what you have in there is a simple 56K modem, then there should be one or two small wires hanging about that aren't hooked to anything. Look at the 2nd link, see the two little silver things on the upper right of the card? Those are your antenna ports.

    If you have these, you're pretty much set. If not, well your card will work for about 20 feet. There are kits to install antennas into a laptop, but these require a lot of disassembly (since you already had your lappie apart, you should be fine with this).

    All in all, it should fit. If you are worried about *physical* size of the card, there are smaller ones out there.
     
  3. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    thanks. yea the only wires comming off the modem were the wires that go to the phone jack. theres not an antenna already in there. if i have to install an antenna im more worried about where to put it in the case. theres no room for anything, lol. and say i get to installing the antenna, is there a certain place in the case i should put it? like would it interfere with anything in certain places? i was thinking about putting it in the lid. theres a little panel that comes off and has some space. or does the antenna have to be exposed?
     
  4. Sabz5150

    Sabz5150 FALCON PUNCH!!!

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    Wifi antennas usually go beside the LCD display. Makes sense that way since when in use, it will be raised. The antennas do not have to be exposed and thin plastic will not impact your range.
     
  5. pissedoffsol

    pissedoffsol RETIRED

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  6. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    ok just making sure before i buy, the little board with the wire attached is the antenna right?
     
  7. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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  8. pissedoffsol

    pissedoffsol RETIRED

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    dropping your laptop, you should be glad the card is all that broke.

    stop being a clutz :p
     
  9. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    ok i think i prety much understand how the antenna thing works. i cant really find any being sold together so ill just buy them seperately. the only thing im unsure of is which kind of antena to get. theres lots of different kinds. are any superior to another? or are they pretty much all the same?

    some of the ones ive looked at

    eBay: 2 brand new sealed mini pci antennas for 802.11b/g, bt (item 120074904261 end time Jan-20-07 09:53:58 PST)
    eBay: le Wireless 802.11 Mini PCI Antenna LIMITED TIME OFFER (item 120075201538 end time Jan-21-07 07:10:42 PST)
    eBay: Twin Mini PCI Antenna for Wireless 802.11 b/g & BT (item 120073069549 end time Jan-15-07 13:20:50 PST)
     
  10. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    lol i know, it wasnt even a long fall, from like the couch to the floor, landing on carpet. the card broke the fall i think. with anything sticking out the side like that its gonna be susceptible to getting damaged. plus it looks cleaner without it. and i like messing with stuff and making it work. ill update with pics when its all done :)
     
  11. pissedoffsol

    pissedoffsol RETIRED

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    have a fire extinguisher handy. i can see this turning bad :D
     
  12. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    haha is my name Wil? im good with electronics. soldering shit is easy. i had a mechatronics class a few years ago and i built a scale from scratch.
     
  13. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    ok, ill update this.

    i took it all apart. replaced the power jack on the mother board, and installed the wireless card. when booting the computer back up. it took FOREVER to load windows. on the order of hours. but eventually it loaded and everything was fine. even after more reboots, it didnt take as long. i think its because i unplugged the RTC battery, but im not sure. i did have to reset the time though. installed the software for the card and it worked great within like 10 ft (no antenna yet). and the power jack was working as well. great.

    so then i had to wait about a week for the antenna to get here. got it all taken apart again, installed the antennas in the lid, put it back together and fired it up. again took forever to load, but this time never finished loading.

    it would run though the start up process, (win 2k)
    say "windows is starting up..."
    then "preparing network connections..."
    then "applying security policy..."

    all normal, then go blue screen (not the bad blue screen, the windows background) and just have the cursor in the middle. after a while it will have the hour glass next to it like its working, then back to the normal cursor and there it sits. i let it sit like that over night and nothing. it never got to the login screen. and no sign that the hard drive is hard at work (no light)

    so i tried rebooting to get it to kick over and then during the start-up process it would go black and say
    "ERROR c-0000218 could not load hive file, dumping physical memory to disk" then reboot itself. it did this about 3 times and then when it started back up it said
    "Windows could not start because following file is missing or corrup ... <windows root>\system32\hal.dll > > Please reinstall a copy of the above file."

    so i shut it off, and did some digging on what this means. seems to be that boot file gets corrupt sometimes, some have linked it to memory, some to the HDD, some to the MB. most of the fixes seem to involve re-writing code in this file. something beyond me.

    so i go back to it and load it upand it starts up fine, just doesnt fully load like the initial problem. just gets to the blue screen with the cursor and stops. its been going for about an hour now.

    WTF happened? any help? i took it apart by the book, and same with re-assembly. i didnt break anything, and handled everything with care. all i did between it running fine last night and being messed up was take it apart and install the antenna. thats it.
     
  14. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    also tried safe mode, and did the same thing.
     
  15. lsvtec

    lsvtec GNU/Linux Evangelist

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    try booting a live CD like Knoppix and see if it comes up. If it does then I think you need a re-install (knoppix will allow you to move any data you want off of your hard disk).
     
  16. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    well im looking for a win 2k disk now to try that. (i have the key just no disk)

    knoppix, would that let me move something from the HDD to a jump drive? reinstalling windows or installing xp seperately, that wont make me lose my data and programs will it?, i was told i wouldnt lose it.
     
  17. lsvtec

    lsvtec GNU/Linux Evangelist

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    That is true, you could move all of your (non-corrupted) data off of your HDD and onto what ever media (including a blank CD) that you desire. Knoppix won't write anything to the disk unless you start their installer (last time I checked this was a multi-step process that asked you several times if you were sure...)
     
  18. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    well see i dont know whats wrong now. the hal.dll error poped up that once, and i havent seen it since. i just gets hung up on the start-up blue screen right before you log in.

    ive tried "last known good config"
    "safe mode"
    "safe mode with command prompt"

    nothing works, it still gets hung up and i cant do anything

    im currently downloading a win 2k disk to burn and try to boot from the cd and see how that goes. currently 8hrs left on the DL ...
     
  19. lsvtec

    lsvtec GNU/Linux Evangelist

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    I would really try Knoppix first because that will give you a fully functional desktop from CD rather than a win2k installer.
     
  20. GSRCRXsi

    GSRCRXsi Super Moderator Moderator VIP

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    so what exactly dop i do with knoppix. looks like its just a Linux OS on a CD right? how will that help? i dont want to reformat. i want to fix it so it will boot again.
     
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