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WiFi networks only appear after reinstalling wireless adapter drivers

Posted on 2013-12-13
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Last Modified: 2013-12-16
OK, here is a strange one. The computer:

ASUS G75VW
Windows 7 Home Premium, SP1, x64
Intel i7-3610QM 2.30 GHz
16 GB RAM
Qualcomm/Atheros AR9485WB-EG wireless adapter
Wireless Driver version: 10.0.0.255 (7/2/2013)
Windows Updates are up to date

Basically, I have to completely uninstall and reinstall the wireless adapter in order for it to see any wireless networks. The process is like this:

If I boot the laptop at work, the Network & Sharing icon in the systray shows no networks at all. If I uninstall and reinstall the wireless adapter from Device Manager, it will show up all available networks and allow me to reconnect. If I then put the computer to sleep (or shut it down), and then take it home, it once again shows no wireless networks at all. Again, I have to uninstall and reinstall the wireless adapter, and then all of the available networks in the area are accessible. If I go back to work after this, it once again does not see any of the networks, not even the one I was connected to previously.

Manually adding a wireless network, including with the option to connect if the station is not broadcasting, does not work either. No matter what, I have to uninstall/reinstall the wireless adapter before it will see (and connect to) any network at all.

I've never run into this before. It's very bizarre. Any ideas?
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Question by:elorc
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6 Comments
 
LVL 19

Expert Comment

by:Raheman M. Abdul
ID: 39716544
I have the issue what i do is
right click on wireless icon on taskbar -> Troubleshoot -> wait for repair then finish.
it will work straight away. no need to reinstall adapters.
My laptop is Lenovo win 7 T410
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LVL 37

Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 39716578
are you sure the driver you installed is a correct driver for the laptop's Wi-Fi adapter? is it an official release from the laptop's vendor?
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LVL 95

Accepted Solution

by:
John Hurst earned 500 total points
ID: 39716668
I had to remove and discard the Atheros NIC that came with my Windows 7 machine and upgrade to an Intel NIC. That solved a number of problems I had.

As noted above, check your driver version.

Also look to see that Power Management (Windows) is set to Maximum Performance (battery and AC) and that in Device Manager properties for the NIC, "allow this card to be turned off" is disabled.

.... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 5

Expert Comment

by:tercex11
ID: 39716688
You may want to try and just turn the wifi adapter on the laptop off and back on and see if it them connects.

I believe you can do this by press the Function F2 key on the keyboard or the Fn key and the F2 together.

Good luck,
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:elorc
ID: 39718315
The driver is the latest version from Atheros' website for the specific model NIC that I have. Disabling/re-enabling the adapter does not help, but running the Windows Network Diagnostics does the trick. It indicates that "Wireless capability is turned off," and when I select the option to fix it, it does indeed reconnect to the wireless network. Interesting. I'm not sure why it gets turned off, when the NIC is enabled and the indicator in the systray shows that it's on but doesn't see any networks.

@Thinkpads_User: Thanks for the suggestions. My wireless adapter settings under power options are both set to Maximum Performance. The Device Manager option to allow the computer to turn the adapter off was enabled, however, so I disabled it. I'll keep an eye open to see if this was the problem.
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LVL 95

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39721483
@elorc - Thanks and I was happy to help.

.... Thinkpads_User
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