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Tods213
1 Copper

Dell Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1 WiFi card no longer working

Hello,

         I wanted to share my experience so that it may help others. I bought my 7000 laptop 2 months ago and the wireless card stopped working this week. (I would love Dell's feedback regarding this story)

The problem I was having:         

One day I let the laptop sleep for 6 hours and when I turned it back on I received an error that I was not connected to the internet. The wifi icon on the task bar, in the lower right, was covered with a red X. Toggling airplane mode nor using the wifi function key had any effect. When I looked up the wifi card in Device Manager the dialog box said the windows encountered an error and that the device could not be started. Error 10. 

Trying to fix it:

I called Dell support and they guided me through the diagnostic procedures in the boot manager BIOS feature. We ran the test two times and both times it came back that all system features were working correctly. The technician then asked if I could plug in via Ethernet and I explained that this model is WiFi only. At that point, I was told that this is a software problem and that I would need to buy approximately $230 of additional warranty coverage for support to investigate. I kept it cool and told support that I would attempt self-repair. They directed me to Dell's website and this community as an aid. 

The next steps I took were to try various driver installations and updates from Intel, the maker of the WiFi chip. None of this had any effect. I also attempted resetting the WiFi settings and drivers, via the windows utility, this also did nothing. 

Finally, I opened the back of the laptop (as I now understand the limits of assistance should warranty be in dispute) and located the WiFi controller. It is a small card retained by one screw, inserted into a slot and has the standard two antenna wires connected. Re-seating the chip had no effect.

After looking up the part number on eBay, I found that this Intel chip was a hot selling item with more than 12 reviews. I ordered the chip (9560NGW R) for $15. I inserted into my laptop and instantly my WiFi returned.

Afterthought:

I believe that Dell's BIOS diagnostic tool is insufficient to test the WiFi controller, especially when it cannot power up and interact with the motherboard. Perhaps they could refine their diagnostic tool to expect the presence of the chip as opposed to only testing which chips it finds active? Furthermore, had I followed the technician's suggestion, I would have spent almost $230 for additional warranty coverage that I did not need. Only, to later discover it was in fact a hardware issue that Dell should have covered under warranty. In closing, I must say that this experience has turned me off to Dell products. Which is a shame because before this happened I believed that Dell was an industry leader in product quality and support.

 

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1 Reply
Clintlgm
3 Cadmium

Re: Dell Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1 WiFi card no longer working

I had the same issue, same results from Tech support and rather than send in my notebook, I purchased the same Wi-Fi card that you did and put it in. works for me too and I'm not without my notebook. I also did have LAN as I use a LAN to USB adapter. Personally I'd rather fix things myself if at all possible and you never know who they will send to fix or screwup further your notebook. Mine is a business notebook with business warranty 3 years with next day in house repair. Stil the $15 for the card and 15 minutes to install it was cheap for the price for me.

Inspiron 13 7000 Series 2-in-1 -7386
16GB RAM
Samxung 970 Evo 1TB SSD 2nd SSD 512 GB Hynix

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