Intel Pro Wireless adapter 3945ABG won't switch on.

Posted on 2007-10-09
Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Intel Pro Wireless adapters have stopped working. The system reports that the wireless is switched off and tells me to use the hardware switch. This has happened on two identical Asus S6Fs that are just two weeks old. Both could access wireless networks for a few days, then both started giving the same error messages.

We are pretty sure it is a config problem at the hardware/bios level - not driver or higher-level software problem. (Have tried "Repair" and driver package update with no effect.) The fact that both failed in a similar way after a similar time also makes a simple hardware failure seem unlikely.

Hypothesis: Could it be that the power saving features have permanently set a switch to power off the wireless? Both machines worked until a long airplane journey when power saving modes were used. We have now switched off the options to allow power saving to switch off the wireless - but if the switch had been set incorrectly, could it be permanently set to off?
Question by:keithrmanning
    LVL 27

    Expert Comment

    This could be the problem >>

    Dell has released a new updated driver which may well now be the answer ...

    "Intel PRO Wireless 3945ABG WiFi Radio Adapter Shut Off Randomly":

    Author Comment

    I got excited reading this until I go to "The issue with the WiFi adapter is caused by incompatible Vista driver, as the problem does not happen under Windows XP system."

    Since I am running XP on these two machines this new Vista driver won't help.

    However, the Dell article says "does not happen under XP". But the symptoms sound just the same. I didn't think a new driver could solve this. If it can solve it under Vista, maybe a new driver could solve it for me on XP. However, I have downloaded the latest drivers I can find.

    Thanks for trying
    LVL 27

    Expert Comment

    That's disappointing ... however, you may find that "Driver Detective" will be helpful in resolving possible driver issues.  
    Although i have had no personal experience with this utility, it has already proved useful to others during the past 24 hours.
    May be worth taking a look at the details >
    LVL 27

    Expert Comment

    It's well past the midnight hour in these parts .. need some sleep .. will login tomorrow ..
    LVL 66

    Expert Comment

    Did you fully remove the drivers and the device before uninstalling the Proset Wireless software from the system?

    Also, might suggest trying to install it under the End User's account, and elevate them to an admin first. I have seen a lot of wacky problems with these....

    And I would try a Version 10 instead of the 11, if you have it.....

    Accepted Solution

    The problem was solved by my company IT support. This ASUS laptop has a software utility that switches off wireless when battery power is low. This overrides the hardware switch. Then it flashes a warning when you reboot to tell you that wireless is off. However, it was flashing the warning for only a fraction of a second (error presumably) so I did not see it. Nor did my colleague who was having the same problem on the same model.
    I apologize for not closing this problem properly. I realize I should have replied to johnb6767 and asked for this to be deleted.

    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    You should still ask for deletion or a PAQ.
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    Closed, 250 points refunded.
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