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idata
Community Manager
9,542 Views

Intel WiFi Link 5100 AGN problem - disconnecting

I'm having a problem that just started with my 2 year old laptop. The Intel WiFi Link 5100 AGN adapter keeps dropping connection.

On my laptop there is a light that shines blue when connected and orange when not connected. I boot the computer and the light will be blue. After awhile it switches to orange. I go into device manager and disable the adapter and re-enable it and it works fine for a bit and then disconnects again. A few weeks ago it was disconnecting one or two times a day. Now it is disconnecting as often as every minute or two.

Sometimes when I go into device manager the adapter isn't even listed. I try scanning for hardware changes and sometimes that will find it and I can re-enable it. Sometimes the scan will not find it and all I can do is re-boot.

I have tried using the latest version driver from the Intel site (13.4.0.9) and that has the same problem as the version that is the latest on my laptop vendors site (13.0.0.107).

I have not made any changes in the last 12 months to my wireless network settings in the router or on the computer. There are three other laptops in the home which work just fine and never drop connection.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Bill

0 Kudos
58 Replies
idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have the same problem and the only solution is a reinstall of Windows.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I really don't think that will do any good... I think it is a problem with the 5100 AGN and its drivers. I fixed the problem this morning. I went to Frys, bought a USB wireless adapter, disabled the 5100 AGN, installed the drivers for the new adapter and I've been going fine with no dropped connections for a couple of hours. The cost? $39 and a gallon of gas.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have the same problem. I am using a new Linksys E2000 router and have a PRO 2915ABG wireless card. I have downloaded the most updated drivers but that did not fix the problem. The ironic thing is that I did not have this problem with my old router (linksys WRT54G). Sorry I was not able to help but I am interested if you get any good suggestions.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have had the same issue for months! with this wireless adaptor. My laptop is an HP Probook 4411s of a little under 2 years. A few days ago, I re-installed Windows 7 and it was fine until yesterday after a large number of Windows 7 updates were installed. I decided to find a fix for it this time. Updating latest drivers didn't solve it. I suspected the problem might have lied in one of the updates. I spent literally hours removing as many updates as possible. When the device isn't listed, it doesn't even show in BIOS, also updated to the latest downloaded from HP. I have switched to Windows 7 64bit recently. I don't remember I had this with Windows 7 32bit. However, I didn't use wireless as intensively on this laptop as now.

It is either the product is faulty, which has been out of warranty in my case, or Windows 7 64bit is showing what it is once again. Luckily, I have a Mac book pro.

I am going to give it up myself. Get a USB wireless adaptor if you need to connect wirelessly.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

And I thought I had a crappy router, as the wireless kept dropping and I had to restart the router once, twice a day. Now I still have the same problem with my new router... I've had this laptop for over a year.. How is it possible that there isn't a fix for this problem yet??? Frustrating!

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Yes, this is a persistent and prevalent problem and having had it for at least a month I've yet to find the correct solution. I've tried all driver updates. My connection can stay on for as little as a few minutes and as long as several hours at a stretch, and when the 5100 disconnects my only solition is a restart. The profile appears nowhere and the device isn't listed until I reboot.

It worked fine for over a year. It's difficult to imagine that this is a physical problem with the device as opposed to related to some kind of software update or incompatability issue .. too many people have logged in with the same complaint after having the thing work fine for a long while out of the box.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Just an update.... I bought a USB wireless adapter on 1/25 and haven't had a single disconnect since then. Problem solved.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have no doubt that using an external USB wireless device will solve the problem. But I would prefer to exhaust all possibilities for fixing the onboard card. Particularly since the 5100 worked perfectly well for a solid year before showing problems. It would seem connected to an update or compatability issue. And it's definitely this card, as no other devices using the hub lose connection. Most frustrating is the aspect of having to restart the machine, sometimes several times, to locate the device. I find it hard to believe that someone at Intel hasn't identified the specifics of this problem, with so many users complaining about the same thing.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

-hi,

I am 100% sure this adapter model is defunct in some way. I have (like 1000 other people) experienced the same problems.

I have 8 computers connected to my access point - and ONLY the 1 with Intel WiFi Link 5100 AGN drops out every few minutes.

This particular pc has both Win7-32 and Linux parttions and the problem is exactly the same on both OS's. Therefore it cannot

be driver related. At least on Linux I wrote a script to reinitilialize adapter every time it disconnects. But that can hardly be called a solution.

Unfortunately the adapter is a built-in in a laptop, so the only way is an external USB adapter (hate it!).

The problem some times gets even worse since it occationally confuses the AP router which then resets all ports. Very nice!

If only Intel would admit that this adapter is defunct (or provide working firmware if possible). Then we could all stop wasting our time....

regards

/Peter B.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have little doubt that this is an adapter issue, but what's puzzling is that the adaptor worked perfectly for over a year before starting to malfunction. The problem seems to be that the adaptor disconnects when it drops the signal, and is unrecognized until the computer is restarted .. sometimes requirng multiple restarts. Also curious is that this adapter performed flawlessly for several hours at a remote location, and yet all other laptops and wireless devices work perfectly on the hub that this unit fails on repeatedly at home. All of this leads me to believe it's a flaw in the unit combined with situational circumstances.

I did order a USB adapter .. but if necessary, how difficult would it be to replace the onboard adapter with something else? It's in a Lenovo X200. Isn't it just a matter of accessing the old one and hooking the new one up?

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

I have used this in my old Dell Studio 1737 without issues. I had Vista 32-bit/64-bit and Windows 7 64-bit installed and it worked with no problems. Here are http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/network-internet-wireless/f/3324/p/19332585/19697701.asp... 19697701 My Intel WiFi 5100 AGN Connectivity Settings

When I install it on Windows 7, for the initial setup, I used the Vista 64-bit drivers from my manufacturers website and installed the drivers in the Vista SP2 http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/software-os/w/microsoft_os/compatibility-mode.aspx Compatibility mode I later updated the drivers at http://www.intel.com/support/wireless/detect.htm Intel® Driver Update Utility for Intel® wireless adapters I was helping someone else with an issue and I then tried http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/network-internet-wireless/f/3324/p/19332852/19700096.asp... 19700096 Installing My Wi-Fi Technology

My wireless router was using these http://en.community.dell.com/wikis/networking_internet_wireless/recommended-wireless-router-settings... Recommended Wireless Router Settings, I use channel 11. Having the router of auto channel can pose problems with connecting, as well as the 2.4gh cordelss phones.

Rick

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

- hi again,

I think you are right. There has to be an obscure set of circumstances to trigger the problems. My pc also used to more stable.

For Windows 7 this can be explained by certain "important" updates. It has been suggested that problems are related to

"Microsoft Virtual WiFi Miniport". This is not a bad idea. Microsoft expect all adapters (even old ones!) to comply with their new

"standard". This cannot always be the case. I have experimented with this but not really achieved convincing results.

It does not explain why I have the same problems on Linux (Ubuntu Lucid).

Only thing that changed in my network is that more clients were added over time. Because of this I upgraded AP's firmware (D-link) to the latest

version but to no avail.

I now use a D-link DWA-140 USB adapter I had "left-over" and it works flawlessly.

I dare not try to disassemble my ACER laptop :-) Not sure what to replace adapter with anyway.

regards

/peter b.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Yeah, I too purchased a Medialink USB wifi adapter and it works flawlessly, but I'd much rather have my onboard 5100 agn perational. It doesn't make sense that these problems wouldn't present out of the box if it wasn't a situational issue. I noticed that the Intel adapter worked flawlessly for several hours at another location last week. But the issue can't be soley in my wireless router because every other computer, hand held device etc works perfectly and as I said, so does my USB plug-in.

I can pinpoint the day when this started happening a few months back. Maybe if there's some way to check the history of installed updates I can then track down which might have caused the 5100 to enter this mode of frequent disconnection. If all it did was disconnect that would be one thing, but the fact that the system fails to identify the device unless a restart is performed is particularly annoying. And sometimes it requires several restarts.

It's frustrating when an issue is so widespread yet not acknowledged, addressed or fixed by the manufacturer. If it's a physical problem with the adapter due to over-heating with time, I'd be OK with that too and just replace the thing. But it's kind of a delicate operation on a laptop and it would good to have some definitive answer from Intel either way. It definitely isn't specific to any one brand of computer.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Hello

I am having the same problems with my 5100 AGN WiFi card. I see that it disconnects when 802.11 n is enabled on my router. If enable only 802.11 a/b/g I do not have disconnections. The problem probably is that 5100 AGN supports 802.11 Draft N and not the final protocol of 802.11 n. with my older router I did not have any problems.

Regards

Kostas

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Thanks for the suggestion. After my first attempt at disabling the n connection I couldn't hold the signal. But I've since restarted and haven't lost the connection in a few hours. Will see if this holds. You mention something about the 'new protocol' so I'm wondering if there was an update at some point in the last few months. I never had a problem with my adpapter or connection before this time and have never changed routers.

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

The 802.11 n and the 802.11 Draft N is not exactly the same protocol. It is called "Draft" because it came up before the 802.11 n protocol was standarized and maybe there are some small differences tha create incopatibility issues. With my 5100 AGN I cannot keep a connection with my router more than 10 minutes. When I am dissabling 802.11 n ftom the router settings there is no problem. The thing is that 802.11 n is supposed to be much faster than the older 802.11 a/b/g protocols. I have downloaded the latest driver from the Intel site but it makes no difference. I believe that such a problem could only be solved with a firmware update. I did not manage to find sth in Intel's site.

Regards

Kostas

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Same problem here with this adaptor in an Acer laptop. Like Kostas, I discovered that disabling 802.11n on my wireless router stopped me getting disconnections.

Cheers,

Russ

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

Just to be clear here .. I tried to disabling the option on the adapter via the device manager. But you seem to be saying that you disabled it on the router itself. Was my method incorrect?

idata
Community Manager
366 Views

A new router that supports all the 802.11 a/b/g/n protocols can permit all wireless cards/PC's with all kind of cards to connect to its WLAN. I think the problem is the compatibility with the 802.11 n. If your computer is trying to connect with the "n" then you are having the problems. I sent mail to Intel and they replied to me to ask my computer manufacturer (Acer). But what we see from this forum all of us are having the same problem with different brands of computers. Their reply is unacceptable for me, since they probably know their card is having the problem. By the way I have installed the latest driver for 5100 AGN from the Intel site and no from Acer but the problem persists.

Here is the reply from Intel.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you for contacting Intel Technical Support.

I understand that you have some issues with the Intel(R) WiFi Link 5100 installed in your Acer* computer.

The information you have provided indicates that you have an OEM computer. Once that an Intel® component is integrated and customized by the computer manufacturer it is considered an (OEM) Original Equipment Manufacturer product.

The support provided through this channel is for Intel® retail boxed adapters only.

Intel sells components to various OEM's (Original Equipment Manufacturers), such as Dell* or HP* who then integrate them with other system components (motherboards, power supplies, disk drives, add-in cards, software, etc.). These products may be customized to the OEM's specifications.

It is recommended for you to contact your computer manufacturer or your place of purchase for support, as they are familiar with the total configuration of your integrated system and the way all the features interact with each other as well as drivers support.

For support for your Acer* system you may refer to the following link:

http://support.acer.com/us/en/default.aspx http://support.acer.com/us/en/default.aspx

NOTE: This links is being offered for your convenience and should not be viewed as an endorsement by Intel of the content, products, or services offered there.

We are sorry for the inconvenience.

Regards

Sergio G.

Intel Technical Support