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Mele20
Premium
join:2001-06-05
Hilo, HI
kudos:5

What is this?

I'm not sure where to post this.

I was gone all day. When I got home this evening and got on the computer, I had no internet connectivity (although modem and routers lights looked fine). So, I clicked on the network icon in the systray. In the past, all it has shown me is my wired network connection. But this time it also showed me Wireless connection and listed "Pammie", "Tinkerbell" and "Verizon MiFi 2200". My router is wired only so where did this come from? Is it anything I should be concerned about security wise?

I'm quite ignorant about wireless connections so I find this puzzling since I have had the computer for over four months and never seen anything but my wired connection when clicking on the network icon. Why would this show up suddenly now? It's been a couple of hours now and the signal strength on the bars change up and down but why since I don't have wireless connection? If I click on one of the three name listed I am asked to enter a network security key which, of course, I don't have.
--
When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. Thomas Jefferson


dib22

join:2002-01-27
Kansas City, MO
hop into control panel, network and sharing, then change adapter settings.

are you seeing a wifi adapter there?

if indeed there is no wifi adapter... is there another machine on the local network with connection sharing on? how bizarre.

GuruGuy

join:2002-12-16
Atlanta, GA
reply to Mele20
said by Mele20:

I'm not sure where to post this.

I was gone all day. When I got home this evening and got on the computer, I had no internet connectivity (although modem and routers lights looked fine). So, I clicked on the network icon in the systray. In the past, all it has shown me is my wired network connection. But this time it also showed me Wireless connection and listed "Pammie", "Tinkerbell" and "Verizon MiFi 2200". My router is wired only so where did this come from? Is it anything I should be concerned about security wise?

I'm quite ignorant about wireless connections so I find this puzzling since I have had the computer for over four months and never seen anything but my wired connection when clicking on the network icon. Why would this show up suddenly now? It's been a couple of hours now and the signal strength on the bars change up and down but why since I don't have wireless connection? If I click on one of the three name listed I am asked to enter a network security key which, of course, I don't have.

That's just showing you WiFi connections that are available to you if you want to connect wirelessly. You may just be noticing them now because those people just installed a wireless router, turned one on, etc. Signal strength of their broadcast routers can change for many reason.

The top line is the actual connection you are on now.
--
GuruGuy


Bill_MI
Bill In Michigan
Premium,MVM
join:2001-01-03
Royal Oak, MI
kudos:2
Reviews:
·WOW Internet and..
reply to Mele20
Like dib22 See Profile said, check the computer for a wireless adapter you weren't aware of and disable it. Your router is not likely involved at all.

Mele20
Premium
join:2001-06-05
Hilo, HI
kudos:5
reply to dib22
Yes, there is a wifi adapter...Dell didn't give me any choice or I would have ordered the machine without it. I thought I disabled all the services connected to it shortly after I got the computer...but maybe I missed something. Hmmm....it is enabled. Now how did it get enabled? I had it and the services connected to it disabled. I disabled it again and the Wi-Fi listings disappeared.

I also noticed that while I was gone (if event viewer is to be believed) that a helper driver for the Dell Support Center was installed which is odd and upsetting. Dell Support Center is good (in the past it was awful and I would uninstall it on a new machine) but I don't want Dell installing anything without my express permission.
--
When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. Thomas Jefferson


dib22

join:2002-01-27
Kansas City, MO
Well at least there was a wifi adapter. I don't have 8 on my laptop yet, when I do I will keep an eye out for auto-un-disabling wifi adapters and report if I ever see it.

PrntRhd
Premium
join:2004-11-03
Fairfield, CA

2 recommendations

reply to Mele20
Mele
Is this a Dell laptop?
If so, there is a physical WiFi on/off switch to turn it off.


nwrickert
sand groper
Premium,MVM
join:2004-09-04
Geneva, IL
kudos:7
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
reply to Mele20
said by Mele20:

But this time it also showed me Wireless connection and listed "Pammie", "Tinkerbell" and "Verizon MiFi 2200". My router is wired only so where did this come from? Is it anything I should be concerned about security wise?

Those are weak signals, probably from your neighbors. There's no reason for concern.
--
AT&T Uverse; Buffalo WHR-300HP router (behind the 2wire gateway); openSuSE 12.3; firefox 19.0.2


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
you should disable wifi if you are not using it. Either by hardware or in the OS configuration. Cut the antenna or wrap it in tin foil (j/k)
--
* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


Anav
Sarcastic Llama? Naw, Just Acerbic
Premium
join:2001-07-16
Dartmouth, NS
kudos:5

2 recommendations

reply to Mele20
Damn that script was supposed to hide my wifi connection to your network :-(
I must say though, I will never understand why couples take videos of themselves in action.


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

2 recommendations

*washes eyes with bleach*


humanfilth

join:2013-02-14
cyber gutter

1 recommendation

reply to Mele20
When you buy a namebrand computer, you need to go through the namebrand version of windows(it has slight modifications) and remove the hooks that they like to put in for your the manufacturers pleasure.

Scan with anti-malware for obvious hooks.

Go into services and look for auto-starting helpers of the manufacturer to be changed to disabled(also look at dependencies).

Another important thing is auto-updaters for Dell specific programs. If one of them is left on, it gleefully may change settings to suit itself and ignore any of the users wishes.
Slightly nasty(to me) little piece of no user intervention needed:
»www.dell.com/content/topics/glob···=us&l=en
Basically its like have a hacker constantly in your system, but as they are a big namebrand company, they don't get charged with any crime for modifying your system.
Another issue lately is where the BIOS has some extra settings and can do stuff without the OS getting in the way.

In Windows 8 you use the task manager to see the 'start up' items. That could be where an auto-updater/installer is sitting to be activated every reboot.

What some people will do is to borrow a Windows version of Windows(without the OEM add-ins) and reformat and reinstall the OS using your same OEM activation code on the side of the your makers machine. It generally works all the time, but make sure to create the OEM reinstall discs first just in case.

ctggzg
Premium
join:2005-02-11
USA
kudos:2
reply to AVD
said by AVD:

you should disable wifi if you are not using it.

It's not hurting anything.


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:12
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
reply to Mele20
At the risk of repetition, I had to set my laptop hardware switch to activate the wifi to see that list.

Switch on.

Switch off.

--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum

Mele20
Premium
join:2001-06-05
Hilo, HI
kudos:5
reply to PrntRhd
said by PrntRhd:

Mele
Is this a Dell laptop?
If so, there is a physical WiFi on/off switch to turn it off.

No, this is a desktop. I don't think there is any physical switch.
--
When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. Thomas Jefferson

Secyurityet
Premium
join:2012-01-07
untied state
said by Mele20:

No, this is a desktop. I don't think there is any physical switch.

Then you can open that puppy up and pull out that wifi card. That'll do'er.

BlitzenZeus
Burnt Out Cynic
Premium
join:2000-01-13
kudos:3

2 recommendations

reply to Mele20
There's only one thing you need to disable, not hard. I've never seen them become re-enabled on their own provided the operating system partition hasn't been restored.


La Luna
RIP Lisa
Premium
join:2001-07-12
Warwick, NY
kudos:3
But she said she had it disabled and has never seen those wifi connections before. The question is, how did wifi become enabled? I'm sure she would know if she did it herself.


nwrickert
sand groper
Premium,MVM
join:2004-09-04
Geneva, IL
kudos:7
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse

1 recommendation

said by La Luna:

But she said she had it disabled and has never seen those wifi connections before.

No, she is not that clear on whether she disabled.

She would not have seen the connections if she had never clicked on the network icon.

Unless a WiFi connection has been configured, and set to auto-connect, there would not have been any outside access to the computer. The chances are that there is no reason for any concern.
--
AT&T Uverse; Buffalo WHR-300HP router (behind the 2wire gateway); openSuSE 12.3; firefox 19.0.2


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8

1 recommendation

reply to Mele20
You might have fat-fingered the keyboard shortcut to activate the wireless card.


La Luna
RIP Lisa
Premium
join:2001-07-12
Warwick, NY
kudos:3
reply to nwrickert
Now how did it get enabled? I had it and the services connected to it disabled.

Going by that she's saying she had the adapter disabled....I think.


La Luna
RIP Lisa
Premium
join:2001-07-12
Warwick, NY
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
said by John Galt:

You might have fat-fingered the keyboard shortcut to activate the wireless card.

oooh, good thought!


Cthen

join:2004-08-01
Detroit, MI
Reviews:
·Verizon Wireless..
reply to La Luna
said by La Luna:

Now how did it get enabled? I had it and the services connected to it disabled.

Going by that she's saying she had the adapter disabled....I think.

Someone thinking they disabled it and it actually being disabled are two different things. Hence why some still had them go through other processes to check.
--
"I like to refer to myself as an Adult Film Efficienato." - Stuart Bondek


CylonRed
Premium,MVM
join:2000-07-06
Bloom County
reply to Mele20
Do realize that having the NIC enabled does nothing bad - in fact - as long as it is not setup by you to connect to something - it is harmless.

This is not that big of a deal.
--
Brian

"It drops into your stomach like a Abrams's tank.... driven by Rosanne Barr..." A. Bourdain


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to Secyurityet
said by Secyurityet:

said by Mele20:

No, this is a desktop. I don't think there is any physical switch.

Then you can open that puppy up and pull out that wifi card. That'll do'er.

probably integrated in the motherboard.
--
* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to CylonRed
said by CylonRed:

Do realize that having the NIC enabled does nothing bad - in fact - as long as it is not setup by you to connect to something - it is harmless.

This is not that big of a deal.

its another way in.
--
* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2
reply to AVD
said by AVD:

probably integrated in the motherboard.

+1
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!

cpalindc
Premium
join:2011-06-05
Washington, DC

1 recommendation

reply to Mele20
said by Mele20:

I also noticed that while I was gone (if event viewer is to be believed) that a helper driver for the Dell Support Center was installed which is odd and upsetting. Dell Support Center is good (in the past it was awful and I would uninstall it on a new machine) but I don't want Dell installing anything without my express permission.

I think this is the key. The Dell support genie probably noticed that your wireless connection was inoperative and either installed drivers or re-installed drivers. I have seen the same thing happen when checking Microsoft update with a disabled LAN card (I had two and disabled the internal one) and MS gave the option to download an update for the card because they determined that it was not working correctly.


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2

1 recommendation

When I got my latest Dell box I uninstalled almost everything Dell. I've never missed any of it.

This is par for the course these days--everyone does it You can't re-install the base O/S since only a "system recovery" mechanism (you usually have to burn your own DVD) is provided and that includes all the crap they loaded.
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!

BlitzenZeus
Burnt Out Cynic
Premium
join:2000-01-13
kudos:3
On a system I setup I had to disable most of the dell startup crap, crap trying to sell their premium recovery service, and stuff like that which was popping up. They hid it as a service. Also as a side note they had the very buggy version of the intel ssd software, and I saw the memory usage climb on that to almost a gig. The latest version of the intel software had been out a while, but Hell didn't update their hdd images in months.

I should note on that desktop system the wireless card was a tiny card on the motherboard, and not in a standard pci-e slot. The little wires that came off it were tied to the case.
--
I distrust those people who know so well what god wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires- Susan B. Anthony
Yesterday we obeyed kings, and bent our necks before emperors. But today we kneel only to the truth- Kahlil G.