1cp1
2 Bronze

Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

Hi, I've recently started having issues with my wireless connection dropping out every few minutes. It's not consistent with a time between drop outs (can be anything from 1 minute to 10 minutes), and will only stay dropped out for approximately 30 seconds, but it is extremely annoying. I do not have this issue with any other devices, only my Inspiron 3576. I currently have a Qualcomm QCA9377 adapter, and have tried all updates and solutions that I can find. I've now run out of ideas, and am considering replacing this adapter with a different model, after reading about so many issues with this particular one. What is a direct replacement adapter that I can use in this situation, that is not Qualcomm? Thanks in advance for your help!

5 Replies
Kflash08
3 Argentum

Re: Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

Could be your router? Did you try rebooting it? Have you tried connecting to another router? (friend's, relative's, neighbor's, public WiFi?)

I have the same WiFi/BT adapter in my Inspiron and it works fine. The only one I ever had problems with was a Broadcom BCM43142 that came in my old HP. Talk about problematic... WiFi would randomly slow down to a craw, couldn't connect to a BT speaker unless I was within 3 inches in front of it, BT range was extremely limited... Seemed like it was a problematic adapter for many, perhaps badly written drivers. Thank goodness I was able to stick something better and more reliable in it.

But to be able to do that, you need to find out if your computer's BIOS contains a whitelist of accepted WiFi/BT adapters. Some manufactures/models do, some don't. Putting one in that's not whitelisted will either cause the computer not to boot or simply not recognize the adapter. Once you figure that out, you'll need to install one with the right antenna configuration. If you see only 1 antenna cable going to the current WiFi/BT adapter, which I'm pretty sure that's the case for systems that originally shipped with the Qualcomm QCA9377, then you'll want to go with a 1x1 adapter. A 2x2 adapter requires 2 antennas, which means that 2 antenna cables need to be present in your laptop. Installing a 2x2 adapter in a system with only one antenna cable will result in the loss of functionality. (No Bluetooth or a missing dual band frequency).

1cp1
2 Bronze

Re: Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

Thanks for the reply @Kflash08. It's definitely not a problem with the router, as I don't have this issue with any other devices, only my Inspiron laptop. But yes I have tried rebooting, as well as connecting to other routers, and still have the same issue. I've tried finding a whitelist for WiFi/BT adapters without any success. My BIOS is Dell 1.10.0. Any suggestions where I can find a list of alternatives? From what I can tell this is a 1x1 adapter. Thanks!

kbard1
2 Bronze

Re: Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

I have the same error with my Inspiron 5570 laptop only 2.5 yrs old

I am having the same problem with the QCA9377 card, started occurring about October 2020 and progressively worsened, when I finally called tech support after trying the usual driver / update / uninstall / rollback stuff. 

The wifi card just drops and there is no signal of any kind available (not my network or any other network)

I am highly suspect of the wireless card.

The card just seems to stop working totally for the wifi (not bluetooth) because there it does not pickup anyone's wifi... (I usually see my neighbors signal when card is working). This happens intermittently, sometimes it gets so bad I have to shut my computer down for a few minutes and turn it back on, then I will get it working for a while, sometimes for several hours before it starts dropping.  

I have: updated, rolled back drivers multiple times. Performed all diagnostics test from website, and worked with Dell Tech Support.... Per technical support completed a fresh reinstall of Windows 10 this worked for a short time but then I started having. I have sent this laptop to Dell (I paid for the 1 yr extended warranty). This too was a waste of time because they put the computer on their standard diagnostics test... and guess what -- they could not get it to fail! Well no wonder (ugh) / I wrote specifically on the form and the text was documented extensively in the troubleshooting.... I am very disappointed in paying for the extended warranty. I have gotten phone support and they tell me it is a software problem... because they do not want or do not have the expertise to tackle this problem. 

I have been working on sophisticated medical equipment for 40 years... and hey this stuff happens, and you have to take further steps and start swapping parts - an elimination process.  In this case there are only 2 parts / 1.) wifi card (about $10) / 2.) the motherboard (about $30) but I am wondering if the Dell support can replace parts.... I dunno

BTW - my wifi card crashed twice while typing this up... very frustrating

If there is someone who can help I would greatly appreciate it.... 

0 Kudos
1cp1
2 Bronze

Re: Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

Hi @kbard1, I ended up purchasing a new Intel AC3165 card, and it's been great ever since. No drop outs or any other problems at all. It was very easy to install as well. So glad I did it.

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kbard1
2 Bronze

Re: Inspiron 3576 WLAN issue & replacement options

Thank you @1cp1 

I am going to see what Dell will do since I have paid for the extended warranty. Certainly getting a compatable wifi card would be the next priority ..... and if I am able to get the Dell support to send me a card I will ask for this one

Of course I did not have such a problem with the QCA 9377 for 2 years but when the problems started they got worse and worse.  

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