We have several Dell laptops with the Intel AC8260 wireless card. Mostly they are Dell Latitude E7470 and E7270 machines. We use Dell's BIOS setting to enable/disable the wireless NIC when a wired NIC is connected. This cuts down on the number of wireless clients on our wireless network and cleans up the different connections to a system. The problem we have is that this BIOS setting will not work unless Intel's ProSet Wireless suite is installed on the system. The ProSet suite is complete overkill for our end users and is very intrusive. Even if I disable it for the individual users, it will ask if the user wants a new wireless network to be added to an Intel profile - this is confusing and unnecessary when Windows does just fine at managing wireless networks. As far as I can tell there is no way to disable it and hide the icon without replacing .ini files for every user and some other unnecessarily complicated settings.
If we do NOT install the entire ProSet Wireless suite, the wireless card does not enable and disable properly based on the BIOS setting. I would like to see the driver fixed so that the entire ProSet WIreless suite is not required. I have discussed this with Dell tech support at higher levels and they apologized but left us with this being Intel's ultimate design. All I want is a simple driver that lets Windows manage the wireless, and lets the BIOS enable or disable the hardware. We have a decent quantity of these machines and I think it is important to keep the end user experience as simple as possible. We use Windows 7 Professional.
Thanks for listening. Hopefully I'm not the only one with this problem or complaint. Dell seems to have their hands tied so I'm trying to reach out to Intel here.
We understand you want to use Adapter switching in your systems, so that the Wireless adapter will be disabled when a wired network is used. Here are some important aspects about this:
- The setting from the BIOS (if available) has priority over the Adapter Switching option from Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software. You might want to check again with Dell Support if there is any update required in the PC's or special requirements of the computer. The PROset software package shouldn't be required when the BIOS is handling this feature.
- If you need to use Adapter Switching with Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software, keep in mind that this was last supported in Windows* 7, this option is not available in newer Windows* versions. You can find more information about this in the following links:
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/network-and-i-o/wireless-networking/000005972.html Learn How to Use Adapter Switching with Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/network-and-i-o/wireless-networking/000007149.html Feature Comparison for Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software Enterprise
- For your consideration, you can create custom packages and profiles using Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software and Drivers for IT administrators. You can find information about this in the following links:
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/network-and-i-o/wireless-networking/000006222.html Frequently Asked Questions for Enterprise and IT Administrators
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/network-and-i-o/wireless-networking/000017246.html IT Administrator Links for Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/network-and-i-o/wireless-networking/000005730.html Silent Installation of Intel® WiFi Driver and Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software Version 15.6 or Later
Thanks Jonathan. I guess I should have run the latest round of updates before posting. It seems that in the last few weeks there has been a BIOS update from Dell and an Intel driver update, and the problem seems to be resolved. It had been an ongoing issue since the Latitude E7x70 series came out.
You mentioned that adapter switching is only supported with Windows 7 - does this feature not work in Windows 10? I'm curious because we will be migrating to Windows 10 in the near future, and for the sake of keeping our wireless network from getting crushed, it's a worthwhile feature. In a future building we may have an entirely different infrastructure able to absorb every client using Wi-Fi, but that's not the case today. If we are going to have all of these clients staying connected wirelessly when we migrate to Windows 10 we will need to make some infrastructure changes.
We are glad to know that the issue was solved with the system updates.
About your last question, the Adapter Switching feature of Intel® PROSet/Wireless Software was deprecated after Windows* 7, however, you can get the same result with newer Operating Systems if the PC BIOS has the option to disable wireless when a wired connection is detected.
As we mentioned before, the BIOS has a higher priority and the feature of the PROset software shouldn't be required in this scenario.
We hope this helps resolve your inquiry.