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Getting signals, but...
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Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: May 2003
Location: London
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Aug 15, 2004, 10:11 AM
G'day folks...

Few days ago I noticed i was getting airport signals, one of which has WEP enabled... The other two dont, however when i try to connect to these all i get is, "There was an error joining the slected airport network" So I just gave up trying - a couple days later i turned on mac stumbler and noticed another signal coming in, selected it - and i was ON!... My eyes popped outta my head - Any hoo, my joy was short lived as the connection only lasted like 30 mins or so... Ive tried to get back on since but no luck, just get the above error mesage like the other two signals...

Any pointers would be apreciated as my knowledge of the wifi ball game is limited... I know the card is workin fine due to workin at other hotspots. Any reason why i was able to get on to that signal? Reckon its possible to get back onto it? If im getting signals in, why cant i connect to'em??

Cheers in advance : )
Professional Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Aug 21, 2004, 04:23 PM
Just because you can pick up an 802.11 signal doesn't mean you're allowed to join it. What makes you think you're wanted?

Are you talking about Wi-Fi signals at a public hotspot, like at a Starbuck's?
Mac Elite
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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Aug 23, 2004, 02:50 AM
Just like f1000 said, your Mac may be able to pick up signals, but it doesn't mean you can join it. The networks you see listed in the Airport drop down menu show the networks that your Mac has picked up. Technically speaking, the person who configured the wireless access point enabled the broadcasting of the access point. Simply speaking, the access point is making itself known to everyone who is listening.

Now, wireless networks can be open or closed. Public places will usually have open wireless networks, and anyone is free to join it. Closed wireless networks are usually protected with a password, and so you will need to have the password to join the network.

Some access points are "hidden" and don't appear in the drop-down menu. This can be achieved by disabling the feature that broadcasts the access point (in technical terms, disabling the broadcast of SSID). You can still pick up the signal, however, with programs such as MacStumbler or KisMAC.

Another thing also, just because you can join a wireless network doesn't mean you can avail of Internet access. Some wireless access points aren't connected to the Internet (just a network), and some require further authentication.
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