Wireless connectivity issue.

  frybluff 10:36 AM 03 May 12

Ever since I bought my Dell XPS, whilst it's very good in most respects, I have had intermittent problems with wireless connection. It would fail to connect, on bootup, and randomly drop out, in use. With the help of Dell Tech support, we established that it was not a router or ISP problem, and Dell said they would change the wireless adaptor.

Then someone more senior, at Dell, got involved, who reckoned he could cure it, by adjustment. To be fair, by changing BIOS settings, changing drivers, and, I think, switching channels on the router, he has made it much more reliable, but not perfect. Whilst it will, now, connect on bootup, most of the time, and rarely "drops out", what it stubbornly refuses to do is connect when "awakened" from sleep/hibernate. I have to reboot.

Dell's "solution" to this is to disable the timed switch off modes. What I would appreciate is a second opinion as to whether I should say "That is not a CURE, it's just hiding the problem", or whether I should just accept that "solution". Sleep/hibernate are hardly that important, it just "peeves" me to accept second best, on a £1000 laptop.

A more objective opinion than mine much appreciated.

  difarn 13:19 PM 03 May 12

I don't think you should accept the workaround. You may be interested in the posts in this forum about the same problem and the suggestions made by someone from microsoft.

  frybluff 16:41 PM 03 May 12


Had a look at that thread, and several similar ones, on the same site. The suggested solution, involving changing the power management settings, for adaptor, got me a bit excited, until I found it had already been done, presumably by the man from Dell. I'm loathe to start changing drivers, as I know Dell have tried that, at least once, if not more.

What I do find a little curious (if that's the right word) that multiple threads on the subject all seem to date from about 3 years ago. Nothing since. That makes me wonder how I've got an identical issue three years later. I would have thought there would be a definative solution in that time. Perhaps I'm just unlucky!!

  difarn 18:33 PM 03 May 12

Have a look to see if ipv6 is checked and uncheck it to see if this makes any difference. - Control Panel - Network and Sharing Centre - local area connection - wireless properties.

Was the Network Adapter uninstalled and then re-installed? This article will take you through the steps if you want to try.

  frybluff 22:14 PM 05 May 12


I think Dell have tried that, more than once. According to Network and sharing centre, I have SIX network adaptors, five of which are disabled. Dell had another go on Friday, with changing drivers. They've now come full circle and decided again to change the network adaptor, I think on the basis that they've tried everything else.

I will report back, if that changes anything. I'm tempted to change frequencies to 5GHz. We tried that and it worked perfectly. It just means I have to run printer, wired, as that only works, wirelessly, at 2.4GHz.

  difarn 22:55 PM 05 May 12

Hopefully your problem will be solved.

Is your printer capable of being connected directly to your router via ethernet cable?

  frybluff 08:50 AM 06 May 12


Certainly have my fingers crossed. I COULD connect laptop, by ethernet, to router, or by USB to laptop. The latter would be the least inconvenient.

If laptop was old (out of warranty), that's probably what I'd do, and run laptop and router at 5GHZ, which seemed to work perfectly, when tried as temporary measure. I don't, however, particularly WANT to do that. As laptop is new, and not exactly cheap, don't feel I should have to, as neither location for printer would be ideal.

  difarn 12:12 PM 06 May 12

I really meant does your printer have an ethernet connection to allow it to be directly attached to your router instead of being attached to a PC. It would then be available to all via the wireless network.

  frybluff 16:24 PM 06 May 12

Printer can connect direct to router, but, as only using the one laptop, it's easier, if I have to go down wired route, to wire to laptop via USB. Plus, there's no easy location, for printer, anywhere near router. I don't know if one method would give faster data transfer, than the other, but that's a side issue. Of course, Dell's suggestion of disabling sleep mode, is another option. I don't FEEL, however, I should have to do any of the above, with a new laptop, or am I being "bloody-minded"?

  difarn 16:41 PM 06 May 12

No you are absolutely right - it is not unreasonable for you to expect an item you have bought to work as it should do. Did Dell roll back the network adaptor driver to a previous one that may have worked?

Are you using the Dell Wireless Manager by any chance? If so you could try disabling this and using the Windows wireless management.

  frybluff 17:02 PM 06 May 12

To be honest, they've worked on it so many times, I lost track of what they have and haven't done. To be fair, at least they are trying, rather than trying to wash their hands of it. So 10 marks for effort, 1 for acheivement (almost the opposite of my school reports!).

They did promise, on Friday, when they tried yet another driver, that, if that didn't cure it, they would send an engineer to fit new adapter. Only trouble is, I seem to remember they said the same thing about a month ago.

As running without sleep mode isn't really a "big deal", I'm tempted to say "how about giving me some sort of warranty extension as compensation".

Anyway, I've sent them an email, to say the latest driver has made things worse, rather than better. Pity is, other than this, it's a great laptop.


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