Airport blogging, part II

Once again, I sit in an airport terminal, blogging. However, unlike last time, the experience is not “too cool.” My flight from Sacramento to Portland is delayed about two hours, meaning I won’t take off until after I was supposed to land. And the wireless, though it exists, is not free. I’m too cheap to pay, so my wireless experience is limited to glancing at the green wireless network status indicator. Mousing over the green yields the useless tip, “Excellent Link Quality 80%.” For fun (woo-hoo!), I point again. “Good Link Quality 73%.” Now, thanks to the Windows SP2 issue I mentioned earlier, the indicator is red, and the pop-up box is truthfully declaring, “Wireless network unavailable.” It’s time to plug in my headphones and listen to Robben Ford. Somehow, “Don’t Deny Your Love” seems strangely appropriate.

What’s next? Coin-operated meters on electrical outlets?

I hope one of these days airports and other public facilities treat wireless access like mains power: they install it because they need it for their operations and don’t prevent others from using it as well. What’s next? Coin-operated meters on electrical outlets so airports could make a few extra bucks off travelers charging their cell phones or running their laptops during extended delays? That would be real customer service!

Airport blogging

I’m at the PDX airport, waiting for my flight. Yet, I’m online, using my laptop, completely unwired. Too cool.

Yes, I hate it when the big name bloggers talk about their travel plans and brag about blogging from the back seat of a taxi using a bluetooth cellular phone networked with a PDA using a WiMAX connection. I’m so sorry. I couldn’t resist. ;-)

WiFi disconnects solved, NOT

My work laptop was recently upgraded to Windows XP Pro SP2. Now my wireless access doesn’t work. Ever two to three minutes, my wireless link shuts down and attempts to restart. Half the time, it doesn’t succeed. When I connect directly, it’s not too irritating. When I’m using VPN to connect to the Outlook server at work, it’s maddening. The glitch shuts down VPN and takes Outlook offline. I might as well not even try to connect.

I thought my wireless gateway was at fault, so I bought a new one. That was probably money I didn’t need to spend. At least the new one is prettier and has a couple more features.

After searching, I’ve discovered that SP2 added a “feature” called wireless zero configuration. Stopping the service has resulted in some improvement, until I want to move my laptop to another access point. The following links provide some good information, though I’m still searching for the ultimate answer.

I’m open to suggestions…