Power surge fried my network card??

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by the_wallcrawler, May 11, 2004.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #1
    Yesterday I go to the grocery store, come home, and my neighbor asks if I have power. I'm not sure at this point because I wasnt home. I get inside and everything seems to be on. I go to get on the internet and I can't connect. My cable modem seems to be functioning, but the activity light is not flickering. I check my router and that is not working. I check my roommates computer and it won't turn on. My powerbook is working just fine.

    After trying a bunch of different outlets with my roommates computer I conclude that its done for. I also try a bunch of different outlets with the router. No luck there. I try a different power adapter with the router and I get it to turn on, but it seems to be acting funny. So the router may be damaged and its power adapter most definitely is.

    I buy a new router and try firing it up. The cable modem now shows activity, but I cant get my tibook on the net. It won't even show up on the router.

    My roommates computer was not plugged into a surge protector, neither was the router. My computer was plugged into a surge protector, along with a number of other things that function just fine.

    Could a surge have went through the router, through the ethernet cable, and fry my network card? And why wouldnt it have fried my laptop? Because the battery kicked on maybe?

    And what would your suggestions be as far as fixing the network card? Get a new one installed? Get a usb net adapter?

    I know when I buy my G5 iMac soon I'll be investing in a nice surge protector...
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    #2
    Yes, a powersurge could have gone through the router and fried your NIC. I've had it go through phone lines and toast modems before. I'm surprised you didn't have all the devices in your place on a powerstrip, I imagine your friend is pretty pissed right about now.

    As far as your laptop goes, I'm not sure what you can do about it. Sounds like the NIC got toasted. Unfortunately, because its a laptop, replacing it means replacing the motherboard, which is going to be super expensive. Does your laptop have an airport card in it? If not I would pick up one of those and use that instead of fixing the NIC.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #3
    yea, he's real pissed. his computer in under warranty but i'm not so sure this is something he could use the warranty on. he'll definitely try.

    as far as my laptop, that was my concern...i wasn't sure if it would be a motherboard thing. well i have been thinking of getting an airport......

    if i took my tibook into an apple store would they be able to test the net card?
     
  4. macrumors 65816

    benixau

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2002
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #4
    There should be a hardware test CD that came with your powerbook in the CD pack thingy. The pack also has the Software restore CDs in it.

    Try this first (it will test your NIC) before paying someone at apple to do it for you.
     
  5. macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    #5
    k this one scared me to death :eek:

    What r powerstrips exactly and where can I buy em? I know about those socket protected thingies, but I am not using them coz... I have others here. I will fix this all, coz I don't want no stinking power surge to fry my computers.
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    #6
    This is a powerstrip:

    http://www.apc.com/products/family/index.cfm?id=220

    Perferrably, whenever your computer is plugged into an eletrical outlet, you should have it plugged into one of these.

    In this particular case however, it probably would not have helped as the voltage seems to have come over the Ethernet jack, which requires a seperate surge protector. One of these would have worked:

    http://www.apc.com/products/family/index.cfm?id=145

    Every electronic device that you care about should be plugged into a surge protector / powerstrip.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #7
    thanks for the heads up on the hardware test. i cant believe i didnt think of that.
     
  8. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #8
    If it's just your Ethernet port that is damaged, you could get Ethernet on a PC Card (which all but 12" powerbooks have a slot for.)

    Always look for back doors through your surge protection scheme. Any unprotected port can take the whole system down.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #9
    will os x support any pc card? are there any that are known to have problems? any suggestions on which one to try?
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    #10
  11. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #11
    that looks like the way i'm going to go for the time being. its way cheaper than going wireless, which i don't really need to do at this point. i want to in the future, but this will buy me some time to research my options.

    thanks everyone for all their help on this and keep the tips coming!
     
  12. macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #12
    if you have a PB, why not return the router you just got and just get a wireless (with router) instead, that way you could still surf should you not choose to repair the net port.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #13
    i think i should get the pc card regardless, just so i can be wired if need be. i am going to go wireless, i just want to do a little more research.

    any recommendations on wireless routers?
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    varmit

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2003
    #14
    linksys

    I haven't had any problems with the linksys g wireless router. But any router that holds to the b and g standards should work. Linksys, Dlink, Airport, any will work just fine.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #15
    yea i've seen alot of people with the linksys g. i think thats what i will go with. the router i had was linksys. the only problem with it was it couldnt withstand a power surge. :)
     
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    #16
    Another vote here for the Linksys G router, WRT54G. You can even put a small Linux distro on it and have it do all sorts of stuff the out-of-the-box config doesn't let you. There's also a $10 rebate on it right now too.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #17
    Netgear's WGR614 is pretty good, my friend is using that with both Airport and AX. D Link's are nice too. I'd stay away from Linksys, personally.

    $20 rebate til 6/4/2004 :)
     
  18. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #18
    why?
     
  19. macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #19
    Well, everyone has different experiences... here's mine with Linksys products.

    I've send in my current 4 port router in three times..

    first time, 1 port died, changed over to another (since I only use 2), and that one died as well. Sent in for repair, and they sent me a new one. Their routers also seem to make a especially loud high pitched "electronics" whine when it's in use, and even louder when no computers connected are running. I sleep rather close to it, so it does bother me when I sleep, Linksys says that's normal, and not a problem. It will not run on 100mb, only 10mb

    2nd router... same thing, 1 port died, sent in for replacement. Same high pitched whine.

    3rd router.. hasn't died yet. Still has the whine.

    They run very hot, in the summer, it trips my power strip on very hot days (100+ in So Cal).

    ---
    My friend had his Toshiba's port burned out as well, (Both were plugged into different surge protectors) and the laptop wasn't even on. His Dell has the network port die as well...

    He had his router replaced twice as well because of dead ports.

    ---
    While these may not apply to the new wireless routers, there is a quality issue that I am no longer willing to put up with. Nor am I willing to "test the water" by buying or recommending products at this point.
     
  20. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #20
    ouch. thats alot of issues. if my roommates computer didnt go kaput too, id be questioning the router.

    i'd love to hear some more experiences before i choose.

    thanks again everyone.
     
  21. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    #21
    I've never noticed any of those problems with either of my Linksys routers. I've had a BEFSR41 for about 5 years now and never had any troubles what-so-ever. I've never heard any high pitched sound, nor have any ports died.

    krimson, it sounds like you might have something else going on with your router. There's no way three Linksys routers were bad in a row. I'm inclined to think you may have some sort of power issue, over-volting, spikes, "dirty" power, or some other such malady.
     
  22. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #22
    a very important issue in determining which router i will go with will be how they handle 802.11b signals. i will definitly get a "g" router, but my powerbook is so old i will need to get a "b" airport card.

    anyone have any experiences to share using a "g" router with a "b" card.

    ps. i know they should be backward compatible, but you never know what can happen...
     
  23. macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #23
    I've checked the ground in the sockets, those were fine, we remodelled the house a few years back and we upgraded all the electrical cables to modern standards (3 wire ROMEX). My friend's house was no more than 4 years old at the time.

    The first one was connected to a cable modem. The second was the same cable modem, then the Zytel DSL modem i have now.

    The surge protector that the router (and modem) is running off of is connected to one UPS. Which is on a different circuit than my G4. When the 2nd router died, i had my electrician friend check it out and he said there was nothing wrong with the power coming into the house. He also did some tests on the 2 sockets in my room, the circuit breaker, main switch.

    Like I said, everyone's experiences are different, there might have been some wierd magnetic field around my room that causes routers to go out, but I dont believe in those kinds of explainations. The one i have now seems to be fine... so who knows. AND it's 2 in a row, not three... unless you're counting my friends router as well.

    I could list more, i know of at least 3 other people who have 1 dead network port... but there's no point in repeating what i've already said. On the same note, I do know people who have had their Linksys routers for a long time and haven't had a problem. A dead port isn't a big issue, the whine is more a problem than anything else.

    Suffice it to say that the warranty has expired on the router and I probably will not be getting another linksys. QC may have improved, but i dont want to take the chance. Im all about customer loyalty, i haven't had good experiences and have given them a chance...
     
  24. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #24
    I ran the hardware test cd.........

    There was an error in the logic board section of the test. The error was:

    unet/4/13

    Anyone know what this gibberish means?
     
  25. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    #25
    as an FYI, this carbus ethernet adapter works perfectly in panther. downloaded the latest driver from dlink and off i went.
     

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