"Fully updated", without XP SP2 is a contradiction. I suggest you finish the job by installing XP SP2 and subsequent band-aids. EVERY Dell Inspiron 5160 laptop I've ordered came with SP2 pre-installed. What happened that inspired you to reload XP from scratch and not bother to bring it up to at least the way it was shipped?
Nice laptop. Watch out for the odd power connector coming from the giant brick size power supply. At the laptop end, the cable is too small, does not have much of a strain relief, and will break the tiny center wire if you bend the cable at a right angle to the connector.
OK. DNS on your XP laptop has a problem. I'll assume that the Debian box is working normally with it's LAN connection.
- If your client radio hasn't been active for a while, the initial DNS lookup when it comes alive may fail due to timing collisions with startup delays. With DNS, it may switch to the secondary DNS server and not return to the primary for a while. If the secondary is bogus, dead, or my favorite problem, mistyped, it will continue to return "host knot found" errors for a while.
- Are you using a very short DHCP lease time? If so, when your computah goes into power save, the router drops the entry because the lease has not been renewed. On wakeup, some clients seem to forget to renew the lease. It's easy enough on Windoze using: ipconfig /renew or ipconfig /registerdns You might also wanna check what the router is reporting for DHCP using: the free DHCP Query Tool at the bottom for Windoze and various Linux mutations.
- XP's Wireless Zero Config sometime conflicts with the stock wireless drivers. Since my guess(tm) is that you've reinstalled the OS from an XP disk that was not the Dell "Windoze Recovery" joke of a disk, methinks you may have screwed something up in the wireless driver or system install. If you're using some driver for the wireless card that you downloaded from the Dell web pile, you may wanna try disabling (not removing) Wireless Zero Config in: Control Panel -> Admin Tools -> Services and see if it helps. Also, try disabling any type of power saving features in the wireless device configuration.
- Back to DHCP issues. One problem I've seen with XP is that I get IP addresses, the gateway, but no DNS. I've seen this on 4 machines so far and have not found a reliable fix. It's the result of a partial spyware removal and/or a roll back of XP SP2 to the previous state. If you run: ipconfig /all | more you'll notice that the DNS server entries are missing. I can kludge a fix by inserting the DNS servers into the network configuration and leave the IP and gateway to be 'server assigned'. If I run the above DHCP Query Tool on one of these machines, it reports back DNS server entries, but XP fails to configure them for some reason. If anyone finds a fix for this, I would be very interested.
Well, try the simpler test of: ipconfig /release (wait about 10 seconds) ipconfig /renew Duz that work?
That won't help because restarting the client does not initiate a DHCP renewal request.
Well, try to create the problem. Put the laptop into Hibrinate mode. Wait a while. Bring it back from the sleep of the dead. Does it work or does it have the same problem? If so, I don't have a clue what to suggest. Something in the wireless driver isn't working right. Check driver versions for something later?
That's normal. Most modern routers have built in DNS caches to speed up repetative lookups.