Do I have wireless on my laptop?

A reader sent the following messages the other day on Twitter:

I am almost certain my laptop doesn’t have a wireless card.
How can I check whether I have a wireless adapter?
If I don’t, which one should I purchase?
Tell me how to check if there’s a wireless card internal.

My first suggestion was to go to the manufacturer’s web site and look up the model number of the laptop, but once they asked how to check the laptop directly, this is the approach I suggested:

Assuming you have a Windows computer, try this:

  1. Click Start > Control Panel > System
  2. Click Hardware > Device Manager
  3. Click the “+” by “Network Adapters”
  4. See if a “wireless” device is listed.

The common wireless designations/varieties are B, G, and N. G being the oldest form, and N the newest. (No, N is not for New. At least, I don’t think so. Anybody know?) Many of the newer ones are backwards compatible, so a G can receive B and G, and many N’s can receive all 3. N adapters are a little expensive, and if the wireless router/transmitter isn’t using N, then there is no advantage. So, I usually recommend getting a Wireless G adapter.

Most wireless adapters are about the same in price. I’d recommend getting one that supports Wireless B and G. You can either get them with a PCMCIA connection or a USB connector. USB is the most versatile. Linksys and D-Link are good wireless adapters. They cost about $40 to $60 at Best Buy or Staples.

Optional:

I am an avid proponent of wireless security. I also prefer wired connections over wireless connections. In urban and suburban areas there are too many sources of interference from other wireless devices, neighboring wireless networks, cordless phones, Bluetooth devices, and microwave ovens. So if you intend on using wireless frequently, I recommend installing Network Magic from Pure Networks (A Cisco company) on your laptop. If you are using wireless at home, you can install it on any other computers in your household. I have seen Network Magic solve countless problems with home wireless networks.

Network Magic 20% Off NMEASY coupon code spring banner 468x60



Got a story to share? Have a question? Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with Skylarking’s email form.

6 comments

  1. […] News Sources wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptLinksys WPC54G PCMCIA Wireless Network Adapter A reader sent the following messages the other day on Twitter : I am almost certain my laptop doesn’t have a wireless card. How can I check whether I have a wireless adapter? If I don’t, which one should I purchase? Tell me how to check if there’s a wireless card internal. My first suggestion was to go to the manufacturer’s web site and look up the model number of the laptop, but once they asked 1how to check the laptop directly, t […]

  2. lvs says:

    Good useful advice. I have faced this challenge once too.

  3. Maroof says:

    hey……………!!! Nice website & you work hard i really Inspare with ur site but tell me about how can i increase my site triffic……………… reply me must thanxxxx

  4. Glad you found this useful, LVS.

    Thanks for the compliments, Maroof. Persistence has helped me. Traffic goes up, and traffic goes down. Subject matter makes a difference, and I know my subject matter isn’t a big draw, but they’re topics that interest me, and a few other folks. Thanks.

  5. Biggest Loser says:

    Hi, interesting post. I have been thinking about this topic,so thanks for sharing. I will definitely be coming back to your site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *