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  1. #1
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    Question Wireless networking disappeared, almost as if it never existed

    Hello, I am in a mild pickle, being the family tech support person. My mother has a HP Pavilion 500-437c computer that originally had Windows 8.1 installed. I upgraded it to Windows 10 Home without a hitch. Since then, it has self-upgraded to WinX AU (Windows 10 Anniversary Update) with no problems. Then, suddenly, at some point between the 17 of September of this year and the 9th of October of this year, this computer's wireless networking capability (802.11b/g/n) went AWOL...Windows Device Manager seems to say it is not present at all, not just misbehaving.

    I tried all the usual suspects, such as making Device Manager rescan for new devices, and going to HP's support site and downloading any and all current WinX/Win8.1-related driver updates, especially networking-related ones, for that particular machine, and then attempting to install them one by one. I had to go and buy a USB wireless "dongle" (I'd call it a "wart", since it does not dangle from a short cable, but that's me) to at least get her back on the home LAN until I got more info on this question...am I looking at a hardware failure in the built-in wireless module, or is there a chance it is a difficult software issue, somewhat similar to the multitudinous USB camera issues I've read about after Microsoft pushed an update (I'm lucky in not yet buying a camera to use Windows Hello iris recognition on my own computer)?

    If it is a hardware issue, then my buying that USB wireless dongle was a correct answer, the other being to buy and run an Ethernet cable from the router to her computer. The second answer is more secure...but it is not a fun thought to crawl up into the attic to run cable, and drill new holes in the ceiling to drop those cables ends through. If it is software, however, what are my chances on reviving the mere presence of the built-in module, considering that when I installed the alleged current networking drivers...each one seemed to experience a "hard crash"...no error windows, just a sudden closure just before reaching what I would think was a successful install?

    TIA

  2. #2
    Star Lounger
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    Atra: This is probably not much help but if you boot into the BIOS setup, does the wireless device show up there, and if so, is it enabled?

    Rob

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    Silver Lounger lumpy95's Avatar
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    Windows Device Manager seems to say it is not present at all, not just misbehaving.
    Do you mean that there is no entry for it whatsoever in Device Manager??
    Here is a screenshot from my W7 machine with my wireless adapter properties showing. Do you have a listing for your wireless adapter in Network Adapters?
    Dev Mgr.JPG

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    Yes, that is what I meant. Device Manager is not showing anything for either a RealTech b/g/n device, or an "unknown" device. The machine is only showing an entry for a RealTech Ethernet network adapter.
    Last edited by AtraEquus; 2016-11-15 at 14:19.

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    That is something that is REALLY weird, the BIOS doesn't list it as a device. Yet, I know it is a RealTech variant...though at the moment the only way I know that is from the spec label affixed to the outside. Unless I overlooked it somewhere in a dark back alley, that is. I don't remember a BIOS having as many pages as this machine is showing.

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    Atra: OK, so that's a start. Does your BIOS show the RealTech Ethernet adapter as a device...or at least give you the opportunity to enable/disable it? My very generic Intel system has integrated Ethernet and video which can be enabled/disabled in the BIOS; if disabled, Windows can't see them as devices. Your issue kind of smells like your integrated WiFi device was disabled in the BIOS. Look for a page in your BIOS settings for "devices" and see if there isn't a way to enable/disable the built-in stuff.

    Rob

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    AtraEquus (2016-11-15)

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    I did find it, finally. and the BIOS says it is enabled.

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    Silver Lounger lumpy95's Avatar
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    Just a thought, look in "Programs and Features" to see if there is anything "Wireless" listed. My HP has "Intel ProSet/Wireless Software" listed and the ethernet is listed as "Realtek Ethernet Controller Driver".
    There are reports of wireless adapter problems with the AU including this thread http://www.tenforums.com/network-sha...w-how-fix.html
    I would say that the wireless dongle that you bought will be your best bet until MS gets it figured out.
    That's why I am still at ver. 1511 until they sort out all this stuff.

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    WS Lounge VIP Browni's Avatar
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    I suffered wireless adapter problems with the AU but at least it did show up in device manager with an error code

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    You've had replies in your duplicate thread as well - http://windowssecrets.com/forums/sho...a-software-one

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    Rather than drill holes for cable I would suggest a simple powerline approach. There are several good ones and not very expensive.

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    I thank you all for your tis and suggestions. I think I have a nice 'check list' to go by in case I run into another machine with similar problems. Sudo15 gave suggested a tip that worked, which he posted in one of my admittedly cross-posted threads:

    Quote Originally Posted by Sudo15 View Post
    Can you open a Command Prompt (Admin) and enter netcfg -d to see if that reinstates your wireless adapter - if you get any error messages, reboot and try it again.
    Egads, that worked! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I don't know WHY it worked, since the built-in card was not showing up at all in Windows...but I'm not looking the gift horse in the mouth. lol And I'll resist cross-posting threads in the future! *embarrassed smile*

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