Laptop 1, with built-in Dell Mini-Card WLAN, almost immediately acquired IP from a Belkin G Plus MIMO Router and was up and flying at peak eff'y.
The other Dell laptop has a TrendNet PCMCIA card, TEW-421PC, nothing i've tried has gotten past a problem acquiring an IP from the same Belkin router.
Can't figure it out, would appreciate helpful insights. Thanks much, folks. :=)