I’ve been trying to connect a Blackberry Curve 8900 to a Netgear RangeMax wireless router. The router has 64bit WEP encryption set and I have no problems connecting any of my other wireless network devices. If I go through the Wi-Fi setup on the Blackberry, it finds my network, I select it, insert the correct key, it tries to connect and then says the following: W002 – Wi-Fi Connection Failed, Meaning: The phone was unable to get an IP address from the DHCP server in order to establish a connection.
So I start down the road of trouble shooting the problem. I test other wireless routers and all that I came across worked just fine, but not my Netgear RangeMax router. So I Googled W002 – Wi-Fi Connection Failed and the first page I found listed out all the Wifi/UMA Error Codes that Blackberry’s can get . I started following the instructions for W002 to troubleshoot the problem, but didn’t have any luck.
Next, I called T-Mobile’s (Works with AT&T also) Hot line for blackberry support. If you have had a Blackberry with T-Mobile over the years, you might have run across this direct number. It’s great, an actual customer service agent answers the line and they start right into helping you. Unfortunately, after years of owning a Blackberry, you know right-a-way you need level 2 support because you have already done everything the first tech is going to take you through. So they pushed me to level 2 and level 2 pushed me to Blackberry Support. Wow, now I was talking with someone from Blackberry named Jesus in Texas. He spent several hours on the phone with me leaving me with the same problem that I called with. But we sure did re-work that Blackberry which gave me more knowledge of how they work, so I didn’t mind it too much.
My next step was to call Netgear. I reached Ryan, agent #3228 in the Philippines after a few menu choices. Ryan took me through the following configuration changes: switch to Channel 11, set Mode to b and g, and turn off WEP. Bingo, the Blackberry connected and rolled right over to UMA mode. It was great but I’m not comfortable in leaving my wireless network unsecured. So he asks me to try WPA-PSK [TKIP] + WPA2-PSK [AES], which is a higher level of encryption and the Blackberry connects right-a-way. Ryan then explains that the software on the Blackberry is more advanced than the older models, so it’s using a higher level of security. Thanks to Ryan, my problem is solved and it only took 15 minutes!
For those of you that don’t know the difference in the wireless security settings that I mentioned above, here are the basics:
TKIP (Temporal Key Integrity Protocol) and AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) is a choice between old and new technologies. Both WPA-PSK [TKIP] and WPA2-PSK [AES] offer good security, but WPA is theoretically breakable and WPA2 with a strong password can withstand an attack for years.
WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) is the oldest (1999) Wi-Fi protection standard and can be cracked in a matter of minutes these days.
UPDATE: If Wi-Fi goes out on your Blackberry pull the battery out and wait 10 seconds before putting it back in. Your connection should come back right a way.
UPDATE: I switched to a Linksys WRT160N router and it has fixed all of my problems. Especially with the signal dropping.