microwave oven vs WiFi laptop

We have a classic 2-story house, with the wireless AP upstairs in an extra bedroom / den / computer room. Downstairs we have the kitchen and eating area and family room. We have a fairly new GE over the stove, wall mounted microwave oven. Just noticed that when the oven is running, the laptop wifi goes dead.... Dell C610 with mini-pci internal wifi card (tried two different laptops) Also have an wireless ethernet bridge for the Tivo + xbox live, but not sure yet how / if those are also impacted while the oven is running. Discussion & comments ?

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What does that comment mean ? Does the term I.S.M. mean anything to you... if not, go away...

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microwaves operate at 2.4ghz. That's why you are losing your signal. Either relocated the microwave or use 802.11a gear (5 ghz)

btw, you don't have to be a prick.

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Johann Beretta

well - since the original comment was pretty useless.... "Avoid wireless electronics that use the 2.4GHz frequency this may interfere with the wireless signal"

yes - all microwaves operates at 2450Mhz, and this is a GE Spacemaker that is 1 yr old. Now trying to "guess" at how the signal is leaking.... which was pretty much the intent of the question - around the door, thru the window, along the AC cord, etc

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"P.Schuman" hath wroth:

Classic as in Greek or Roman and made from stone? Those tall columns are nifty for antenna mounts, although they are difficult to climb.

Den? You keep lions?

Well, I think you might want to do a little test. Find a 2.4GHz cordless phone system, and place the handset inside the oven. Close the door. Do NOT punch the "start" button. Punch the "call" button on the cordless phone base. Chances are good that the phone will ring. So much for perfect shielding in the microwave oven.

Microwave ovens are allowed 1 mw/sq-cm leakage at 5 cm distance during manufacture, and 5 mw/sq-cm at 5 cm after installation. The overwhelming major of ovens allegedly can pass these specs. I purchased a digital microwave oven leakage detector and tested a few ovens. All passed but mine failed badly. It seems that it was crunched during shipping and the hinge was slightly bent. It was so minor that I hadn't even noticed. A bit of careful hammering and it was able to pass.

If you want, I can estimate the relative power and field strengths of the oven and an access point at the same range. However, I'm lazy and my back the envelope guess looks like it has a problem. Maybe later. Meanwhile, using a 2.4GHz spectrum analyzer (Wi-Spy):

I've found that the signal levels from my (repaired) leaking microwave oven to rather substantially larger than the radiation from my access point (at roughly the same distance). When you're starting with perhaps 800 watts (+59dBm) of RF power, even the most insignificant amount of leakage is going to be more than what the typical access point radiates.

There's not much that can be done for reducing the leakage beyond manufacturing limits. It might be possible to add additional shielding or an RF absorptive cabinet. The problem with shielding is that it often causes the signal to just bounce around in a different direction. Since yours is wall mounted, you might consider an extra absorptive front door, and some inside the wall shielding, for those times when you must cook and surf simultaneously.

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Jeff Liebermann

Anyone have diagrams to build a Yagi to look like Etruscan ornament?

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On Tue, 23 Jan 2007 15:57:47 GMT, "P.Schuman" wrote in :

I Sabotage Myself? Incredibly Short Memory? Independent Subcarrier Method? Indian School of Mines? Insensitive Munitions? International Solidarity Movement? International Surfing Museum? Interstellar Medium?

Indeed -- there's no excuse for being rude to those trying to help.

That's actually right on point.

Usually around the door.

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John Navas

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