I updated my alienware 17 to windows 8.1 a few days ago and have been experiencing various problems.
1. Sound card: Realtek ALC3661 Audio
The sound card crashes time to time and I can no longer turn on 5.1 speakers option in alienware audio. it will just crash everytime when I try. I uninstall the driver and reinstalled from the driver support page using my service tag; however, this doesn't solve the issue.
2. Graphic card: Nvidia GTX780m with 3D bundle
The graphic card driver (3126.96.36.199.24.2) from driver support page seems do not support windows 8.1, so I downloaded and installed the newest driver from Nvidia Geforce R331 game ready driver (331.58), however, it seems the Nvidia control panel crashes sometimes.
3. Network: Qualcomm Lan killer E2201
The internet card driver offered online (188.8.131.526) is not compatible with windows 8.1. WIndows installed killer E2200 seems working fine. But I don't know if this new driver will disable any internet connectivity functions.
Overall, I am disappointed getting paying so much for my alienware 17 since the support service on the phone is useless and the drivers for this laptop are not updated on time. Microsoft must release windows 8.1 test version to alienware teams for a long time now. However, all the drivers on the drivers and downloads website are still badly out-dated. When will alienware upload the new drivers for windows 8.1? We need the timeframe!!!
Windows 8.1 was just released and all manufacturers are working on compatibility for their systems. All new O.S's come with difficulties when it comes to driver software, we cannot create drivers, we modify them after the manufacturer give them to us, for them to run better on our machines.
In the meantime, take a look at this
Dell | Alienware Technical Support
Opening your case does not void your warranty! Check out Alienware Artificial Intelligence
I can't always reply to PM's, if you need extra assistance visit:
We released our OEM Nvidia 327.45 driver on 10/28/13. It does not specify 8.1 but did you try it?