Intel's Wi-Fi adapters connectivity issues plague users

Intel’s Centrino range of wireless adapters have become some of the most highly used by OEM’s in the laptop world. Having integrated Wi-Fi within a laptop is the norm these days, so when buying a new PC, you shouldn’t expected to suffer from constant disconnections and limited speeds due to a year-long driver bug with a fix nowhere on the horizon.

Sadly this is what many Intel Centrino 6230/6235 users have suffered from and this isn’t something that has only just happened, the driver (or possible hardware issue) has now been going on for nearly a year for many consumers.

What happens for most users is that when they first buy their new laptops, they will straight away connect to their wireless network. Then usually within an hour of use, you’ll lose connection. Reconnecting with sometimes say that your network doesn’t exist, switching the Wi-Fi off and then on again will usually reconnect you, but you can expect the same thing to occur a few hours later.

This is most apparent when either downloading large files at high speed or when playing online games; disconnections or long sections of lagging will become the norm for many Centrino owners.

Now don’t get me wrong, not everyone who owns the two latest Centrino Wi-Fi adapters are falling prey to this issue, some of us have been lucky and have not updated the default drivers (Dated 2011!) that Microsoft includes in Windows 7 and 8.

These very old drivers seem to be the most stable, though because they are now nearing two years old they also miss out on many features that the Centrino adapter is trying to push such as WiDi amongst others.

You may be asking yourself why a driver issue is a big story, well my view is that with many consumers buying new PC’s from Samsung, Dell and others running Windows 8 and then finding out right from the get go that their machines are not doing the job they expected them to, Intel should be working to find out what is wrong.

Intel seem to be a little hush hush on their forums. Despite posting updates every few weeks stating that they are looking into the issue and that their latest driver update fixes disconnection issues for some users, they have now begun to blame OEM’s for not correctly seating the cards.

Blaming OEM’s such as Samsung and Dell seems pretty poor by Intel, especially when reverting the latest drivers back to Microsoft’s own albeit old ones keeps you on a stable connection; if card seating as the problem then stability would suffer no matter what driver you used.

For those of you who are having issues, as we have stated you can revert back to Microsoft’s own drivers by selecting your Centrino adapter in Device Manager and then uninstalling the driver and selecting the option to remove the driver files too; rebooting your PC should then automatically set you up with stable drivers.

The only other way to get stability is to go to the advanced section of the Centrino adapter in Device Manager and disable the 802.11n mode, something most of us don’t want to do for speed reasons.

So this leaves the ball in Intel’s court, consumers shouldn’t have to wait for a year to have a working driver from a company as big as Intel, especially with the problem happening on brand new Windows 8 laptops straight out of the box, many of which are being returned as faulty.

Via: Intel Forums

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I have this exact chipset and problem in my new Samsung laptop. Although, I only see the issue at work, not at home. I thought the machine was just subpar on quality. If I'd only known that all I had to do was disable 802.11n mode. I've done that now. Can't wait to see if it helps tomorrow.

I have a 2011 HP Dv7 - Now HP are f**** terrible with their drivers, often have a GPU crash at least once a week, but thankfully 3rd parties such as leshcat have made things *so* much easier. For those of you who don't know, leshcat makes some *fantastic* driver packages for ATi cards + intel switchable graphics

All HP's drivers are from 2011, and most have problems, although the wireless card works well (intel Proset) in fact I have never had a problem with it. Biggest "problem" if you could even call it that - was that I couldn't change the MAC address.

End of the day OEM's and the part manufacturers need to sort their **** if they want to sell products. These days OEM brand is EVERYTHING, not being able to run windows.

I have always had problems with laptops with Intel Wi-Fi Adapters... I really wish they would fix these problems (of which I'm sure this is just one of many), as it is beyond ridiculous.

I can't say I've seen this problem consistently, or frequently...

Occasionally, yes. But not limited to Intel adaptors.

My intel wifi card disconnects, and won't reconnect without a reboot, on occasion. Forgot the model number, will check if it is one of the above.
Only replaced it because the original Broadcom card didn't support 5Ghz. Anyway, the problems only started once I installed Windows 8. Yes, the onus is on Intel to provide stable drivers, but Microsoft should also do their best to ensure that an OS upgrade doesn't break everything.

I bought one from a new pull that was broken down for my Dell Latitude E5430, little did I know that it was the start of major head banging. I eventually gave up trying to diagnose the card and reverted back to the crappy two antenna OEM card.

Extremely irritated, and it wasn't seating issue. The packets would send out fine and then just drop, for no reason what so ever. I found that leaving the middle antenna unplugged would delay this random drop, but not stop it.

I've seen this before -- but with Intel's integrated graphics cards. The latest Intel driver would have some problem, but the drivers that Microsoft shipped with Windows would work fine.

Looks like Intel's testing isn't as thorough as Microsoft's. Also, Microsoft seems to be a lot more lax with the drivers in Windows Update. This needs to change -- they need to put the Windows Update drivers through the same amount of testing that they do for the bundled drivers.