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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a problem I haven't seen posted. My Kindle doesn't detect any of the 7 WiFi networks that my laptop and smartphone can see. Here are the specifics:
- When I take the Kindle to a restaurant or office building, I see multiple Wi-Fi networks even if they are secure and I can't connect to them. I can easily connect to anything that isn't secure
- At home the laptop and Droid both see our Wi-Fi and that of several neighbors
- At home the Kindle doesn't see any networks at all
- I've walked 3 blocks with the Kindle and stopped in front of every house to scan for WiFi and it doesn't find any. (I did that in order to eliminate the possibility that another wireless signal within the house is causing a conflict.)
- I turned off the WiFi on the laptop and the Droid, so the Kindle is the only 1 trying to connect.
- I've done resets and restored to factory settings. Same result
- Sometimes it scans for a brief period before saying 0 networks available; sometimes for 15 minutes or more.

Actually this is the 3rd Kindle. Each time I call tech support (level 1 the 1st time, level 2 the 2nd time), they work with me for 30+ minutes and then send a new device. Surely all 3 devices don't have the same problem??! The wifi at the house is "G".

Any help would be GREATLY appreciated.
 

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BGinMD said:
- I've walked 3 blocks with the Kindle and stopped in front of every house to scan for WiFi and it doesn't find any. (I did that in order to eliminate the possibility that another wireless signal within the house is causing a conflict.)
I'm surprised you didn't get arrested! ;D

Seriously, this seems very strange. Not being able to see or connect to your wifi is something we could work with... not being able to see anybody's is very odd!

OK, first things first, for now let's ignore the fact you can't see anybody else's wifi. Take a look at the wifi item in our faq here, work through the suggestions there and see if anything helps.

If that doesn't get you anywhere, I'd start to wonder if there is some sort of RF (radio frequency) interference in your area which is stopping your Kindle from connecting - I suspect the Kindle runs its wifi at low power to save the battery, so it might not be able to see networks that other devices can. Any power lines, mobile phone mast or anything like that nearby?

I can only think of one way to test this, and that's to unplug your home router and take it with you to work and plug it in there! Even though you won't have an internet link there, you can still see if your Kindle sees your router - if it does then it's an RF problem at home, if it doesn't then it's more likely to be something about the router.

Try these ideas, and let us know how you get on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, Morf.  I looked at the faq link and everything looks good (although my husband, aka router admin) doesn't think we need to get into router firmware since we can't see any networks. 

You did give me an idea, though.  We have a cell phone tower near here and all my searching for home WiFi has been in the immediate neighborhood.  I'm going to take the Kindle to another area and do my walk/scan in front of houses, and see if I get any different results.  Thanks!

One other thing I failed to mention in the original post is that the 1st Kindle did connect via WiFi initially.  I downloaded a book, turned off the WiFi to save battery, turned it back on a few days later but was never able to connect again.  Then the story picks up as posted.
 

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I had to return my first Touch. When they shipped the replacement, I couldn't connect. I was at work, and the one I was returning was connected, but the new one just would not connect. They were sitting right next to each other, and it made no sense to me.

I called CS and he asked if I could go to a McDonald's to try. I asked why and he asked of there were any electrical or cell towers nearby. We have a huge tower right outside our building. He said sometimes that can interfere, particularly the first time. I thought "uh huh...suuuure." But I drove to McDonalds and sure enough it connected. I drove back to the office, and it connected as soon as I got within range.

It might be that you just need to get it to connect somewhere, and then it'll be good.

Good luck!

Sent from my Kindle Fire using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, Hoosiermama.  Here is the latest... I took the Kindle to a shopping center where I could see about 15 WiFi networks, hopped on an open one and registered the device.  I brought it home and for the 1st time I could see the 7 WiFi networks on my street including ours.  Wait -- this isn't a success story.  The best signal I could get on our own network (even setting the device an inch from the access point) was 1 bar.  Note that throughout this whole process my laptop connects with no problem from any place in the house with between good and excellent signal. I had other things to do and put the Kindle aside, it went to sleep, and when I woke it up it could no longer see any of the 7 networks, including ours, it saw 60 minutes earlier?!?!  Huh??

Before I give up I'll call Tech Support ONE more time...
 

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This is a WiFi Analyzer app that may help. . . .it's very highly rated. . . . .
 

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If you could get on your network once, maybe restarting will get you on it again. I've noticed with my Fire and Touch that Mg signal can deteriorate after awhile (usually days, if not weeks) and a restart will get me a strong signal again.

Sometimes things like this can be really frustrating!

Sent from my Kindle Fire using Tapatalk
 

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BGinMD said:
Thanks, Hoosiermama. Here is the latest... I took the Kindle to a shopping center where I could see about 15 WiFi networks, hopped on an open one and registered the device. I brought it home and for the 1st time I could see the 7 WiFi networks on my street including ours. Wait -- this isn't a success story. The best signal I could get on our own network (even setting the device an inch from the access point) was 1 bar. Note that throughout this whole process my laptop connects with no problem from any place in the house with between good and excellent signal. I had other things to do and put the Kindle aside, it went to sleep, and when I woke it up it could no longer see any of the 7 networks, including ours, it saw 60 minutes earlier?!?! Huh??

Before I give up I'll call Tech Support ONE more time...
This really does sound to me like the signal from the cellphone tower is drowning out your signal to the Kindle, probably because the Kindle's transmit power is lower to keep the battery use down.

If you know how to change the settings on your router, try switching it to a numbered channel rather than auto (which they usually default to). Try several across the range - 1, 6 and 11 say - and see if any are better than others, or if you're feeling really keen, try each one in turn. There might be one that breaks through the interference!

As a last resort, you could try contacting the cellphone company whose tower it is and see if they can help, they may have some advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I don't want you to think I'm ignoring all your helpful ideas.  I downloaded the WiFi Analyzer to my phone (really cool and may be useful later too), and our signal looked pretty good (strongest of those I could see). 

I talked my husband into changing the router channel from 6 to 7 and now the access point won't come back up. (He's not a happy camper, since the laptop which worked fine no longer works of course). 

I can't contact the provider associated with the cell tower since we have a law in our county that anyone who puts up a tower has to agree to rent space to others to keep the number of towers to a minimum (i.e. anyone could be on that tower).  When I was out, though, I tried to connect directly next to a different tower, probably also with multiple providers, and could see about 15 WiFi signals and had no trouble connecting).

Regarding a reset, unfortunately I have to do that frequently.  My other problem with the Kindle is that more than half the time just pressing the "on" button doesn't do anything and the only way to get the device to come on is to hold the button for 20 seconds (i.e. reset it).  I have done multiple resets (soft and hard) and even restored to factory settings.

I don't think you need to wrack your brains on this one any more...  Thanks for the help!

Paper library books are looking better all the time!
 

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BGinMD said:
I can't contact the provider associated with the cell tower since we have a law in our county that anyone who puts up a tower has to agree to rent space to others to keep the number of towers to a minimum (i.e. anyone could be on that tower). When I was out, though, I tried to connect directly next to a different tower, probably also with multiple providers, and could see about 15 WiFi signals and had no trouble connecting).
How frustrating for you. there must be some 'authority' you can contact regarding the Tower. All countries have a telecommunications overseer. I also initially had a problem connecting to Wi-Fi but seemingly out of the blue it connected without my doing anything, strange but I didn't look the proverbial gift horse in the mouth.

As regards the constant re-sets. This seems to be a regular problem with the Kindle. I had to have my Kindle replaced after 8 months. I live in fear now of it going down again.

I do hope your trials and tribulations come to an end as a working Kindle is great and when coupled with Calibre software is a joy.
 

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BGinMD said:
I don't want you to think I'm ignoring all your helpful ideas. I downloaded the WiFi Analyzer to my phone (really cool and may be useful later too), and our signal looked pretty good (strongest of those I could see).

I talked my husband into changing the router channel from 6 to 7 and now the access point won't come back up. (He's not a happy camper, since the laptop which worked fine no longer works of course).

I can't contact the provider associated with the cell tower since we have a law in our county that anyone who puts up a tower has to agree to rent space to others to keep the number of towers to a minimum (i.e. anyone could be on that tower). When I was out, though, I tried to connect directly next to a different tower, probably also with multiple providers, and could see about 15 WiFi signals and had no trouble connecting).

Regarding a reset, unfortunately I have to do that frequently. My other problem with the Kindle is that more than half the time just pressing the "on" button doesn't do anything and the only way to get the device to come on is to hold the button for 20 seconds (i.e. reset it). I have done multiple resets (soft and hard) and even restored to factory settings.

I don't think you need to wrack your brains on this one any more... Thanks for the help!

Paper library books are looking better all the time!
If you are having problems where you Kindle needs to be "reset" a lot, I would suggest contacting Kindle customer Service again--that definitely shouldn't be happening. Has the "constant resets" problem happened with all of your Kindles? (you said that this is the third one you've gotten) Do you have any books at all on your Kindle? A bad book download can cause freezing. How is the battery life on the Kindle? Does it seem to be discharging quickly? (the battery should last at least a week)

Shari
 

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BGinMD said:
I talked my husband into changing the router channel from 6 to 7 and now the access point won't come back up. (He's not a happy camper, since the laptop which worked fine no longer works of course).
Oops, terribly sorry, that was my suggestion! :-[

I presume you've tried power cycling the router and the laptop? Next, assuming your router has ports in the back for a wired network connection (they usually have 4) then if you have an ethernet cable anywhere (one usually comes in the box with the router) you can connect your laptop to the router with the cable and you should then at least be able to connect to it and see what it's doing.

Normally a laptop should cope with a change of channel without problem, but you may have to tell it to forget the network and then reconnect depending on your OS and setup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
That's OK, Morf - not your fault.  The access point just won't come back on (yes, we've tried everything).  Anyway, we've got a workaround and a new one on order.

Back to the Kindle -- Just for grins, I did a reset to factory defaults, took it to a public hot spot and registered it again.  Saw WiFi networks all the way home.  Got into my driveway, scanned for networks and saw 5 networks that definitely aren't here (never saw them before, Droid didn't see them and one of them, I'm quite sure, belongs to a house 1/2 mile away), but it didn't see any of the 6 I normally see on my block and that the Droid saw.  REALLY bizarre.  Anyway, I called Tech Support to ask them to take back the device but the guy talked me into trying one more time when we get our new AP. 

To shalym's post - The need to reset in order to get the device to turn on seems to be cured by resetting to factory defaults.  The device resetting itself seems to happen only when it is scanning endlessly and unsuccessfully for a network (if memory serves me correctly - have taken notes only intermittently), and that was true of the 1st and current Kindle, but not the 2nd one I had.  I haven't bothered to re-download my books, and the battery seems to be OK.  If the wireless issue could be cured, I think the rest would work OK.  Thanks
 

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I'd blame it on aliens, that's the only thing left that I can think of!  ;D

I don't think you mentioned what version of Kindle it is, but I'm assuming it's wifi only. In view of the amount of trouble you've had already, you might want to try seeing if Amazon are prepared to let you upgrade it to a 3G version for the difference in cost.

They might be prepared to do this because it's in their interest to get you sorted so you buy books from them.

With a cellphone mast so close, your 3G signal should be good!
 

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I'm a little late to this thread, but just wanted to mention that when I turn wifi on on my K3 (I usually keep wifi turned off to conserve battery) it doesn't always see my home network right away.  Sometimes it detects it immediately and I'm connected, sometimes it detects and connects after a minute or two, sometimes it's quite a while (maybe 20 minutes) before it detects, and sometimes it somewhere in between.  I find that if it doesn't detect/connect right away, I can speed up the process by going to the settings and pressing the "scan for network" (or whatever the option is called - I don't have my Kindle in front of me) repeatedly until it connects (again sometimes I do this just a couple of times and it detects, and sometimes I do this for several minutes).  So, if it doesn't detect your wifi right away, have you tried just waiting to see if it eventually connects?  Or try pressing "scan for network" repeatedly to see if that helps?  If it's like mine, it may eventually connect.  By the way, my husbands K4 and our Fire never seem to have a problem detecting our network.  It's just my K3.  But I'm used to dealing with that now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Actually, KndlShell, you aren't too late.  This goes on and on and...  It's very interesting that you are also having that much trouble seeing your network.  I've tried leaving the device on, hoping it would eventually see my network and connect, and I've tried manually pushing the re-scan again and again.  With the latter, it eventually just goes into a continuous scanning mode which can't be interrupted by closing the screen or turning the Kindle off/on; only by turning Wi-Fi off, but then it resumes the scanning when you turn Wi-Fi back on.  Doing a hardware reset is the only way to get it to stop scanning.  This Kindle (my 3rd device) and the prior one, never saw my network or my neighbors' unless I'd taken it to a public Wi-Fi location and not let it sleep before I got home.  After sleeping, it never sees a network again (unless I give it a refresher at a restaurant)

In an earlier post I mentioned getting home from a public Wi-Fi and seeing unknown networks from my driveway, even after doing a re-scan.  It's happened twice now.  If my Droid and laptop weren't always seeing identical networks, I'd think I had lost my mind.  Also, the problem of the "on" button not working about half the time (having to do a hardware reset to get the device to come back on) has came back.  It had been cleared by going to factory defaults, but I'm not going to do that every day!

I was ready to ask support to just take the device back (although Morf's suggestion about a 3G device is a good one), but when the level 2 support supervisor said he wanted engineering to look at the logs, I figured it was a good idea.  He walked me through the process of dumping the logs and emailing them to him although I can't imagine that they will be able to see the more bizarre (e.g. phantom network) issues, but we'll see what they say. Stay tuned if you care....

 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm not sure how to close out a thread, but I gave up.  Support didn't get back to me at 2 promised times, and the "on" button was getting to be a bigger problem than the Wi-Fi issue (increasingly having to do a hardware reset to get the device to come on). I called support again and the tech asked what I wanted and I said I just wanted to return the device under the warranty.  He agreed to do it and take back the case as well, so the mystery will forever be unsolved.  Pity, but there is a limit to the amount of time I wanted to invest.  I may buy a 3G one at some point.

Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions!
 

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Sorry that you couldn't get it sorted, I hope you do decide to buy a 3G version at some time and then hopefully we'll see you back here with some better experiences to report!
 
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