ActiveSync ravaged laptop finally nursed back to full health

April 16, 2008

Vista busy cursor The XP Thinkpad which ActiveSync all but crippled is finally back to normal working, nearly two weeks after the event.

The complication is that it uses IBM Access Connections (hereinafter “AC”) to connect securely to the corporate wifi and AC takes over some of the wifi functionality normally provided by Windows built-in networking components. It looks like when you install AC, the relevant bits of Windows are disabled to prevent conflicts.

Now after the ActiveSync-induced crash had ripped the heart out of my laptop’s wifi connectivity the only way I had been able to get it working again had been to reinstall Windows networking from the Windows Control Panel. That had got me past the fundamental hurdle but had the downside of reinstating some Windows components that clashed with AC. So what I got was a laptop that could connect to a wifi but was very temperamental, could take ages to lock onto a given wifi in a stable way, and frequently dropped connections even with Wireless Zero Configuration turned off.

The only fix was to reinstall AC because I knew that would send the unwanted bits of Windows networking back to sleep. I had been reluctant to do that because it meant I lost all my preset configurations, but there was no other way so I bit the bullet.

The laptop now connects to wifis as reliably as it ever did and I have set up all my wifi configurations again so all is back to normal, no thanks to (spit) ActiveSync.

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