Note: This blog post is from 2007. Some content may be outdated--though not necessarily. Same with links and subsequent comments from myself or others. Corrections are welcome, in the comments. And I may revise the content as necessary.You know how sometimes you're traveling with your laptop and wonder if you might have a wireless network available? Wouldn't it be nice to detect that without having to turn on your laptop? Well, there are certainly devices you can buy (hotspot finders) which can help you identify when your near a hotspot, but I just learned of a feature built into my Dell Latitude D620 (and which is in others like the D420 and 820, and some XPZ units).
Called the "wi-fi catcher", it's that switch on the left side (on my unit), which I knew could be used to turn the wireless adapter off or on. But if you pull it toward you, that enables this "wi-fi catcher".
Cooler still, and to the point above, it turns out that this feature works even when the laptop is turned off (or in standby or hibernate). One thing, though: you need to enabled this feature using the Dell QuickSet mechanism (one of your icons in the system tray).
You can learn more about the wi-fi catcher, in this case about the d620, at:
Here's a screenshot of the switch:
And an explanation of that screenshot is here, including an explanation of the colors you'll see and what they mean.
Finally, I'll point that I first read of this feature myself at this review:
Sure, we should all read our owner's manuals, but at a minimum, sometimes you learn more from someone's distilled review. :-)