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: 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.
- 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.
Additional troubleshooting steps to fix this problem
Here is a list of other troubleshooting steps that you can try for fixing this problem. If one method didn't work, try the next step.
- Check for new updates from manufacturer website
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.)
- Let Windows install driver automatically
Click Windows Key + R, type devmgmt.msc,
expand network adapters,
right click on the listed wireless adapter and click uninstall.
Windows will automatically install the Wi-Fi adapter driver from its driver cache. (Windows automatically installed Wi-Fi driver version 188.8.131.52 for Qualcomm Atheros Wireless. In my case, it didn’t work)
- Check Windows Power Options
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
- Configure Power Settings
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.
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.