Wi-Fi Troubleshooting

Most of the time Wi-Fi works and it’s wonderful! A bit slower than cable all-around yet, wonderful! However, frustratingly, at one time or another we all have Wi-Fi issues: can’t turn on Wi-Fi no matter how hard or fast you press that wireless key; maybe not being able to connect to the Internet; showing only a partial connection and not being able to reach a particular site; etc. It can be mysterious. Over at Wirednot, Lee Bradman has posted a wonderful little schematic that not only depicts what all is involved with Wi-Fi but lays out the considerations that need to be taken into account during troubleshooting what appears to be a Wi-Fi problem.  It also makes very clear that once you reach the access point you’re out of the wireless environment, at least locally. This is not intended to bypass standard troubleshooting steps: 1) identify the problem; 2) establish a theory of probable cause; 3) test the theory to determine cause; 4) establish a plan of action to resolve the problem and identify potential effects; 5) implement the solution or escalate as necessary; 6) verify full system functionality and if applicable implement preventive measures; and 7) document findings, actions, and outcomes. The process is fairly standard regardless of occupation or profession. Lee’s little graphic puts it into a technology networking framework. As you step through the standard troubleshooting process, here’s most of the stuff you need to consider.