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Wifi issue on windows 8 laptop.


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#1 Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:03

Good morning,

I am trying to troubleshoot a wifi issue on a windows 8 laptop.

Not sure if this is related but earlier this week the laptop encountered a problem installing a windows update.

What is happen is is the laptop is saying no wireless connections are available and has a x over the wifi Icon on the task bar. I have reset the router and it seems to be working fine. 3 phones, a iPad, kindle and another laptop can connect to it and show all bars.

The wifi is turned in on the laptop. Hitting the switch to turn it off does not change the wifi icon to disabled which concerns me. The wifi light on the keyboard does turn off. Turning it back on results in the same no networks available.

I have tried rolling back the driver, uninstalling the driver and reinstalling it. I have also restored windows to a restore point prior to the failed wi dies update.

None of this has made a difference

It is a atheros wireless adaptor. I saw there was another device fir a Microsoft debugger wireless network, not knowing what that was or if that could be the issue I uninstalled that. No luck. Same issue.

Anyone have any other ideas what it could be or what else to try? Thanks.


#2 Detection

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  • Joined: 30-October 10
  • Location: UK
  • OS: 7 SP1 x64

Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:07

Are the quicklaunch buttons that turn the wifi on and off working for other things such as brightness etc? (Usually hitting the Fn key + one of the F keys)

There is no hardware switch on the side of the laptop that turns wifi on and off either?

You can't goto device manager and right click > enable the adapter?

As above but in network connections?

#3 OP Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:16

Are the quicklaunch buttons that turn the wifi on and off working for other things such as brightness etc? (Usually hitting the Fn key + one of the F keys)

There is no hardware switch on the side of the laptop that turns wifi on and off either?

You can't goto device manager and right click > enable the adapter?

As above but in network connections?


Yes, all other quick launch buttons work.

In device manager it shows the adapter as enabled.

On this particular acre laptop. The wifi button is a key/ button left of the tab icon. There is also a email, web, and games button. When wifi is enabled the button has a back light. This is the only button / switch.

#4 Detection

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  • Joined: 30-October 10
  • Location: UK
  • OS: 7 SP1 x64

Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:21

Is the WLAN service running in services.msc ? (Type services.msc into the Run command or start search bar)

#5 OP Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:26

It is running and the startup type is automatic.

#6 Detection

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:29

I think I would grab a live Linux distro and boot from the CD/DVD (or install windows on a separate partition) to check the hardware is still working fine, least it will 100% narrow it down to a windows/driver issue

#7 OP Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:33

I think I would grab a live Linux distro and boot from the CD/DVD (or install windows on a separate partition) to check the hardware is still working fine, least it will 100% narrow it down to a windows/driver issue


How big of a file are we talking for this. We are on a Hughes net satellite I telnet service which limits daily bandwidth to 250mb with a hard cap. Sounds like a good idea to try.

#8 Detection

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 14:56

How big of a file are we talking for this. We are on a Hughes net satellite I telnet service which limits daily bandwidth to 250mb with a hard cap. Sounds like a good idea to try.


I know there are a few really small distros like DSL, about 50MB but chances of them having the drivers for your wireless card would be slim

Ubuntu is around 700MB

It might be better if you partition your HDD and install Windows again on that new partition, that way you don't waste any data allowance (So long as you have the Windows DVD)

Then once you're done testing, just set the old install as default and delete that partition to return to normal

#9 OP Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 17:43

Well. I tried dsl just for the hell of it and it says no wireless network card found so I am going to take that as meaning it doesn't have the driver? Can the specific driver be added to it as I installed on a USB pen drive?

#10 Detection

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 17:53

I'm not great with Linux but I would imagine it would be possible as the OS is on writeable media vs a CD

Don't ask me where to find it or how to install it though, there are a few linux guys here who should be able to help though

#11 ViperAFK

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 18:01

I don't have any experience with DSL in particular, but atheros chips should work out of the box in most linux distros, since they are supported by the open source kernel drivers so they generally don't need drivers to be manually installed.

EDIT: DSL has an ancient kernel (version 2.4.x). Atheros support was added to the linux kernel in version 2.6.35. You would need a distro with a newer kernel.

#12 OP Chris DuCharme

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 19:58

Tried a couple other things.

First I took out the network card and reseated it and the antenna connection. That made no difference.

Now I tried installing the manufactures driver rather then Microsoft's which yielded the same result. No network available.


Does this sound more like a hardware issue or windows issue? Wired Internet still works on this laptop btw.

#13 Detection

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 19:59

Could easily be either still, that's why you need a clean installed OS to rule hardware out

#14 OP Chris DuCharme

Chris DuCharme

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  • Joined: 30-October 12

Posted 15 February 2013 - 20:43

Did a refresh of windows 8 while saving files and that seems to have done the trick.



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