Everything on the computer works fine and I can get internet when I hook up an ethernet cable, but the wireless can't find any networks and the light is orange which means it's not even working. Does this mean I have to get a new wireless card or something else?
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Try the internet using an ethernet cable and if it works fine the trouble is either with the wireless router or with the computer of laptop wireless adapter.
If you can connect a smartphone or tablet to the wireless router the problem will be with your computer. You can try ensuring the wireless aqdaptor drivers are properly installed by using the device manager and troubleshooting from there. In the case of a wireless dongle it would be worth uninstalling the drivers and reinstalling them.
Are you talking about direct-connecting via Ethernet to a cable or DSL modem? You shouldn't have to disable wireless to do that. If the cable modem has an open Ethernet port, you should be able to run a straight-thru Ethernet Cat-5 cable between that port and the Ethernet port on your laptop. The laptop should recognize that it is connected to the modem through the direct connection. Check the manual for the cable modem or information supplied by your ISP for connection details. You may have to do some setup on the modem to get an Internet connection, like having your ISP 'activate' the modem. Just be sure your Ethernet cable is a straight-thru, standard Ethernet cable, and not a 'cross-over' cable such as is used to transfer data between two computers.
Try uninstalling the wireless adapter from the control panel. Reboot the system (although with Window 7 that shouldn't be necessary), and let it Windows auto-discover the device again. Disable/enable doesn't for Windows to re-install everything.
You can purchase a usb Ethernet adapter that plugs into the side of your laptop. You could buy a wireless card that could fit into your computers card slot.
If you mean that you don't have Ethernet in your home you could go wireless and use whatever free access you might find. Check out an electronics store for improvised attachments. Many types are available.
if you already have an ethernet card installed in the laptop, then it should be fine. did you try rebooting the modem that you are hooking the laptop to? Sometimes with different ISPs that is one of the major issues.