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Fix Wi-Fi keeps disconnecting in Windows 8 and 8.1

windows 8.1

It’s been 2 week now (Nov 1st) since I installed Windows 8.1 on my brand new assembled computer with a Haswell processor and Asus Z87 Pro motherboard. Initially everything looked fine and I was loving Windows 8.1 more. Then I noticed the Wi-Fi keeps disconnecting in Windows 8 and 8.1. None of the initial diagnostic troubleshooting ever gave me any signs of any issue with windows or my computer. So I had my ISP technicians come home, check the line and confirmed there is no problem from their part. The problem was still there and I kept blaming ISP. I also tried updating wireless router firmware which was already up to date. Then I noticed my parent’s old computer which they use every day for an hour never complained about internet getting disconnected. That is when it dawned on me…The problem is with Windows 8.1. Finally, I am also victim of Windows 8.1 and I am not alone.

Tried lot of troubleshooting steps after referring forums, but none worked. This is how I finally fixed it.

Fix for Wi-Fi keeps disconnecting in Windows 8 and 8.1

  • Press Windows Key + R, type devmgmt.msc
  • Disable Bluetooth.
  • Disable all entries under network adapter except wireless adapter (In my case Qualcomm Atheros AR946x Wireless Adapter)
  • Restart computer. (The issue was not fixed in my computer until I restarted)

Initially, I was not yet sure if the issue is fixed. So I decided to wait 72 hrs for confirmation. After 72hrs, my Wi-Fi never got disconnected which confirmed the issue is finally fixed. As I am writing this article, just turned on my Bluetooth again. Within 15mts, it disconnected my Wi-Fi twice re-iterating the problem as a conflict between Wireless and Bluetooth device.

Cause of this Problem: The issues seems to be a conflict between Qualcomm Atheros Wireless and Bluetooth device drivers. By disabling Bluetooth, there is no more conflicts and wireless started working normally. Hopefully Qualcomm will be made aware of this issue and they will release an update soon to fix the problem. Once a fix is released, you will be able to use Wireless and Bluetooth at the same time without disabling. There is little Microsoft can do on this as it is a driver related problem which should be taken care of by device manufacturers.

Quick update: This solution seems to work for more PC’s

  • Windows Key + R, type devmgmt.msc
  • Click View, check Show Hidden Devices
  • Under Network Adapters, disable all entries except for the entry related to Wireless Adapter. Right click on each entries and then click disable. If there is no disable option, leave it as it is. In the below picture, all entries except Qualcomm Atheros AR946x Wireless Network Adapter is disabled.
  • wi fi win8.1 Fix Wi Fi keeps disconnecting in Windows 8 and 8.1
  • Once all entries are disabled except the Wireless Adapter, restart Computer. (The problem won’t be fixed unless you restart computer)Share the results under comment section.

List of other troubleshooting steps to fix this problem

  • Go to PC manufacturer website and check if there is an update for Windows 8.1.
    Most device manufacturers have released updates for their devices after the release of Windows 8.1. Install the updated drivers for Wi-Fi. If possible, download and install updates for all devices. Check if the issue is fixed. (I went to Asus website which is my motherboard manufacturer and downloaded Wi-Fi Driver V10.0.0.263. It didn’t work for me.)
  • If it didn’t work, let Microsoft operating system install the driver for you and hope that might work.
    Click Windows Key + R, type devmgmt.msc,
    expand network adapters,
    right click on the listed wireless adapter and click uninstall.
    Restart computer.
    Windows will automatically install the Wi-Fi adapter driver from its driver cache. (Windows automatically installed Wi-Fi driver version 3.0.1.155 for Qualcomm Atheros Wireless. Again it didn’t work)
  • Windows Key + R, type control panel,
    go to Power Options. Click Change Plan Settings,
    click Change Advanced Power Settings, then Wireless Adapter Settings,
    then Power Saving Mode. Change the Plugged in option to “Maximum Performance”.
    If this is a laptop, you might have On Battery option and set it to “Maximum Performance”. Restart computer.
  • Windows Key + R, type ncpa.cpl,
    Right click on Wi-Fi connection, click Properties,
    click Configure, click Power Management tab,
    Uncheck the option “ Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”. Click OK.
    Restart computer.

Hopefully the steps mentioned here will help fix Wi-Fi keeps disconnecting in windows 8 and 8.1. Please share your feedback. Use the comment section for any queries.

About the author: I am Anup Raman. A Tech Enthusiast|Blogger|Tech Trainer with 10+ yrs experience in the field of IT. My expertise are in Operating Systems, mainly Windows and Computer security which comes from my experience, working as Tech Support and Trainer for Microsoft, Symantec and McAfee. Loves blogging about Technical Troubleshooting, discussing latest Gadgets, Games and doing Reviews.

26 comments… add one

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  • Donkos67

    I have been to through three USB Wi-Fi adapters and I still have the problem, this is from three different manufacturers with different drivers no matter what I do I still have a problem until I got an internal Wi-Fi PCI card that fixed the problem no disconnects no problems but a USB Wi-Fi on Windows 8.1 works for shit.

  • Kuldeep Kaul

    Thanks Raman. Your post was very helpful. I have a HP 15-n003tx laptop. After upgrading to windows 8.1, my wifi problems started. I would get disconnected in max 5 minutes. Sometimes, the computer would fail to detect the wifi networks altogether. After struggling for nearly a month, I came across your fix. AND it worked like a charm, now for a week, I have not lost my wifi even for a minute.
    Thank you again.

  • manju

    for me this problem occurred only after updating my win os from 8 to 8.1. Well i hope this trick will work. Nice info . thanks bro.

  • Hummingbird

    Hello , I am So stressed ! I was writing a note in here to say I went a whole hour with NO disconnect & as soon as I finished typing I lost connection . My problem is I disabled the Bluetooth & the QUALCOMM Ethernet adapter & restarted the computer it worked a while .Then I read more of your article it said look for hidden adapters & now there Is a HUGE list . My wifi adapter in Intel Centrino N 2230 is the only one I thought I had left open . How do I know disabling the list wont crash computer ? Can U please help me ? I have been dealing with this problem since I bought this computer in 2012 & I figured it was always a isp problem until I read YOUR article . Can u Please help me ? Thank you for your time. Sincerely a stressed out non technical person who wants to throw this computer through a window Or 8.1 windows lol !

    • Just a quick reply…..Right click on Wireless Network Adapter in the list and then click uninstall. Once it is uninstalled, restart computer. After restart, the wireless adapter will automatically gets installed. Let me know, if that fixed the problem. In case, it didn’t, let me know. Good Luck.

      • Hummingbird

        Do u mean uninstall the intel Centrino wireless adapter N 2230 ? Are you SURE it will come back when I restart it ?

        • Yes, 95% of time, it will get installed automatically on restart.
          Very rarely, the driver may not get installed if the existing driver is corrupted. To be on the safer side, you may also download the driver for wireless adapter from computer manufacturers website and keep it for emergency.

          • Hummingbird

            Hello , I want to thank you for taking your time to help me .
            Okay I went most of the day yesterday & it happened WAY LESS than usual . So far all I have done was disabled the Bluetooth & the Ethernet adapter then restarted it ,also after that I did what u said & uninstalled it & restarted it . It took about 6 hours of until it lost wifi connection . When I read what you said about looking for hidden adapters & the list was HUGE :( I was afraid to disable all of them because well I will be honest I am not tech smart! ;) I am afraid If I disable something I know nothing about It wont turn back on again ROTFL! Please if you know what I am doing wrong Or what I can do next I am all ears . Also My computer is a dell 14z ultra book with windows 8.1 Intel Centrino Wireless N 2230 Wireless adapter . Ever since the day I got it home ( I now know it happens to a lot of people) & it either says lost connection or said LIMITED connection . God bless & thank u for any more help u can give .

          • Hummingbird

            Thank you so much for all of your help . I did as you said it worked for 1 whole day & then BOOM no connection or LIMITED ! Please do you have ANY other suggestions ? The only thing I haven’t tried was the part where you said to look for Hidden adapters & disable them all . But my fear is the list is SO big & with name that sound important ,So I was Wondering can u tell me what NOT to ever disable ? I am willing to try anything at this point (even tossing it through a WINDOW Or 8.1 Windows ;) Thanks again for your patience with a non tech smart person . Sincerely A frustrated Hummingbrd

            • Hi Hummingbird…..Did you try uninstalling the wireless network adapter and then restart computer as I mentioned before? After restart the driver will automatically get installed. Please update the result.

  • Faz

    Thank you so much!

  • Nor S

    holy shit tht worked

    Press Windows Key + R, type devmgmt.msc
    Disable Bluetooth.
    Disable all entries under network adapter except wireless adapter (In my case Qualcomm Atheros AR946x Wireless Adapter)
    Restart computer. (The issue was not fixed in my computer until I restarted)

  • Margs Burt

    So far so good. I really hope it has fixed it. Fingers Crossed.

  • zayref

    thx bro,finally my problem solved

  • cindy S

    Sure hope this works, I have been extremely frustrated with this since late Dec 2013. If this fixes the problem, I really will have to wonder why I paid for Best Buys Geek Squad, because they have been unable to resolve this issue.

  • ravi Tej

    It did help me . Thanks a lot .

  • Daniel

    I found a interesting solution that mite help some people. For some weird reason on my PC if my wallpaper is set on slide show ( change desktop wallpaper every x amount of minutes ) whenever the wallpaper changes the internet connection is dropped. When I turn this feature off it works fine

  • rashika

    I have tried all steps you advised. I hope this works. I bought a new sony viao laptop a month back, and it has been giving me problems eversince. it keeps detecting some ifi which is not there. I am not able to delete the same as well..nut internet keeps disconnecting every 15 mins..i even reinstalled windows

    • My best bet is to install the updated driver from Sony website for Windows 8.1. If that didn’t work, then you need to try the steps mentioned here. Unfortunately there is no one step which works for all devices. I am also constantly checking and updating this article for methods which work for others. Hope one of this will work for you.

  • Dave

    I am so disappointed. I really thought I had found a solution but I am still getting the disconnects every 5-10 minutes. Any other ideas?

    • The only other method I can think of is
      1) Install the latest win 8.1 compatible device driver from manufacturer website.
      2) Uninstall security software and firewall and check if it works(Disabling these options may not work if the security software itself is corrupted or not compatible).
      Please let us know the results.

  • Liew Jin Hao

    Well done! I had this issue also for my new Asus Transformer T100 windows 8.1.
    The internet keep disconnecting as your and it’s really made me suffer on that, i did what you did and the problem fixed!
    Thanks! Problem resolved!

  • FlowBoarding

    Wow, I had to comment on this. I can’t thank you enough for this article. I’ve been dealing with randomly disconnecting Wi-Fi issues since I’ve upgraded to 8.1. Thank you so much again!! It worked.

  • KR

    The last power management step worked for me. Thanks genius!

  • gkv

    unclick the option that allows the computer to turn off the device for energy save. worked for me

  • Julien

    Hi there,

    Thanks for this. I’ve just followed your instructions and hopefully it will work. Will keep you updated.
    WIFI disconnecting has been driving us mad over the past….year!