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We have some HP-450 machines and the wireless is not working well. Directly under the access point it works, but move a few meters away and the wireless comes in and out. We get the same problem with Ubuntu 13.04 or Linux Mint 15 but the wireless works fine on the one machine running Windows 7. I suspect the problem is that the Ralink RT3290 wireless card. lshw reveals: (only network parts)

*-network
    description: Wireless interface
    product: RT3290 Wireless 802.11n 1T/1R PCIe
    vendor: Ralink corp.
    physical id: 0
    bus info: pci@0000:01:00.0
    logical name: wlan0
    version: 00
    serial: 9c:2a:70:6b:d5:a9
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: bus_master cap_list ethernet physical wireless
    configuration: broadcast=yes driver=rt2800pci driverversion=3.8.0-27-generic firmware=0.37 ip=192.168.0.136 latency=0 link=yes multicast=yes wireless=IEEE 802.11bgn
    resources: irq:16 memory:c2510000-c251ffff
*-generic UNCLAIMED
    description: Bluetooth
    product: RT3290 Bluetooth
    vendor: Ralink corp.
    physical id: 0.1
    bus info: pci@0000:01:00.1
    version: 00
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: bus_master cap_list
    configuration: latency=0
    resources: memory:c2500000-c250ffff           

*-network
    description: Ethernet interface
    product: RTL8111/8168 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controller
    vendor: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd.
    physical id: 0
    bus info: pci@0000:08:00.0
    logical name: eth0
    version: 07
    serial: 2c:59:e5:a1:14:54
    size: 10Mbit/s
    capacity: 1Gbit/s
    width: 64 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: bus_master cap_list ethernet physical tp mii 10bt 10bt-fd 100bt 100bt-fd 1000bt 1000bt-fd autonegotiation
    configuration: autonegotiation=on broadcast=yes driver=r8169 driverversion=2.3LK-NAPI duplex=half firmware=rtl8168e-3_0.0.4 03/27/12 latency=0 link=no multicast=yes port=MII speed=10Mbit/s
    resources: irq:42 ioport:2000(size=256) memory:c2404000-c2404fff memory:c2400000-c2403fff

Thank you, mickpurcell

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Looks like the OS already pick correct drivers, but Ralink cards are always a mastery. First execute rfkill unblock all and see if the card works (you can see status by using rfkill list all, everything should be unblocked) If that doesn't solve the issue, try How do I get a Ralink RT3290 wireless card working? –  Web-E Aug 29 '13 at 6:39

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