Hi, I've now spent about 14 hours trying to mend the wireless on my wife's Thinkpad, and finally got it to work again. I thought it might help someone else if I posted some of the detail here. Moderators, please move this post if there is a more suitable place for it.
R50e 1834 S5G just over a year old. Windows XP Home.
The ThinkVantage software had never been installed/used, and no updates had been applied. The wireless was suffering drop outs, slow connections and general unreliability. It has only ever been used for our own home network, but may 'roam' in the future. Since I don't use the machine, it took a while for me to realise there was something wrong. I looked for updates/upgrades, and eventually these broke the wireless entirely, after which I ran the ThinkVantage software and got all the recommended and suggested updates, including a BIOS firmware upgrade. Then the wireless could not be made to work at all, even under the windows software.
After trawling through this excellent forum, I eventually found this post:
which set me on the right path. (I'm sorry, I don't know how to make this a link in the proper way).
I uninstalled the entire Intel ProSet wireless driver (both parts) to remove the new driver, using the windows add/remove software tool. I then went into the DRIVERS directory and deleted every file whose name contained "iProInst" or "IPROINST" that I could find, hoping they would be put back by the new driver installation. There were >90 files deleted!
I then again installed the latest Intel ProSet software from [7kwc50ww.exe] according to the instructions (by this time I was expert and could have done it in my sleep!). Bingo! The wireless function now works. The Access Connections also works - although I have only tried it once to find out, as I'm not about to do anything that might break the wireless function again.
So, my wife is now happy, and I never want to fiddle with a Thinkpad again.
I do hope this helps someone!