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Saturday, 16 April 2011

Next time, remember the shift key

Just bought an internet-enabled TV. We had to also buy a £75 (!!) wi-fi dongle to connect it to our router, and it didn't work. Very annoying, as a laptop, my smartphone, and a Nintendo 3DS had all connected effortlessly in recent weeks. The error report from the TV was quite basic: 'Failed'. It did at least confirm that it could see the dongle, and our router, but no indication of why it couldn't connect.

I went on to the web and googled "Sony Bravia wireless connection problem". Loads of people in the same boat, but no solutions, other than a couple of people for whom it had just started working eventually. One guy wanted me to go into my router and start setting DNS settings. I think not.

After half an hour of trying to set the TV's IP address manually, changing the wi-fi channel, and moving the router into the living room, I gave up for the night.

Today my 11 year old son has a go. He converts the letters in our SSID to uppercase, and suddenly the TV is on the net. I am more than a little bit miffed, and not because I've been outsmarted by someone four decades younger than me (I've grown used to that). Those letters in the SSID are hex digits, so it shouldn't matter if they're uppercase, lowercase or in bold italics. And if it does make a difference, why did the TV let us enter in lowercase in the first place? Am I missing something?

Anyway, that's behind us now. Tonight we will spend the evening watching YouTube videos from the comfort of our living room. Truly this is the Golden Age for nerds.


  1. Your posts are so amusing Charles! Please keep blogging it's fantastic. :)

    Oliver (Anne H's neighbour)

  2. Obviously not in the QA mind set Charles, that's the first thing I would have tried ;)

  3. Thanks, Al: next time I'll know where to look for my 24 hour technical support hotline.

  4. I don't think the SSID is hex digits, I think it's case sensitive characters, like a password. Suppliers happen to use hex digits, possibly as a simple form of random name generation. You could (and some say should) change the SSID to add extra protection from hacking

  5. Without saying what the default SSID actually was, it certainly doesn't look like a default value. Pretty sure you must be right about its resemblance to a hex number being coincidental.