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Last reply by 08-06-2015 Solved
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Broadcom NetLink Ethernet Adapter issues with Windows 8.1

Hi there.

I recently upgraded my Inspiron 580s to Windows 8.1, and I am now experiencing some issues with my Broadcom NetLink Ethernet Adapter.  My connection will work for about two hours and then the connection will change to limited.  I try using the built-in Windows troubleshooter to fix the issue and it just stalls on resetting the adapter, which leaves it disabled.  I can reboot to restore connectivity, but then the process repeats.  I'll have my connection for a couple of hours and then it goes away again.  I'm basically at the point where I'm rebooting my computer every couple of hours.

Here is what I've done so far:

I started with the Microsoft support forum to see if anyone had any suggestions.  I've tried disabling the power options on the adapter, uninstalling and reinstalling the adapter, and I've downloaded the current driver from the Broadcom website.

Disabling the power options and reinstalling did nothing.

When I try to install the driver from Broadcom's website, Windows informs me that the driver currently installed is newer than the one currently in use.  The driver number installed is 15.6.1.2.  The driver number from Broadcom's site is 15.6.0.10.  I've been able to confirm that driver 15.6.1.2 and Windows 8.1 has issues based on my discussions with others on the Windows support forum.

I'm curious if anyone knows if Dell has provided a solution to this or if someone has found a workaround.  I'm open for any ideas as I continue to troubleshoot the issue.

Thanks.

Solution (1)

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5 Rhenium
2974

Hi Willenator,

Dell has not tested Windows 8 Operating system on this system model. Hence compatible drivers are not available. Please refer to the following link to know the system eligibility for upgrade:

http://dell.to/1a6L2h1

However you may try installing the Windows 7 driver in the compatibility mode.

http://dell.to/16nfwMF

Download the R250303.exe from the link above and double click on the file and extract it on the desktop in a folder. Look for setup file in the extracted folder. Right click ‘.exe’ file and click ‘Properties’. Click “install in compatibility mode’. Click on Application and select ‘Troubleshoot Compatibility’. Next, click on ‘Troubleshoot Program’. Click on Program worked in earlier versions of Windows. Click on ‘Windows 7’.Click on ‘Start the Program’. Do not hit ‘Next’ until the installation completes. Once the installation completes, click on ‘Next’.

Please let me know if this helps.

Thanks and Regards,
DELL-Sujatha K
Dell Social Media and Community Professional
#iwork4Dell

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Replies (22)
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Exactly the same here with same adapter on XPS desktop.

5 Rhenium
2975

Hi Willenator,

Dell has not tested Windows 8 Operating system on this system model. Hence compatible drivers are not available. Please refer to the following link to know the system eligibility for upgrade:

http://dell.to/1a6L2h1

However you may try installing the Windows 7 driver in the compatibility mode.

http://dell.to/16nfwMF

Download the R250303.exe from the link above and double click on the file and extract it on the desktop in a folder. Look for setup file in the extracted folder. Right click ‘.exe’ file and click ‘Properties’. Click “install in compatibility mode’. Click on Application and select ‘Troubleshoot Compatibility’. Next, click on ‘Troubleshoot Program’. Click on Program worked in earlier versions of Windows. Click on ‘Windows 7’.Click on ‘Start the Program’. Do not hit ‘Next’ until the installation completes. Once the installation completes, click on ‘Next’.

Please let me know if this helps.

Thanks and Regards,
DELL-Sujatha K
Dell Social Media and Community Professional
#iwork4Dell

5 Rhenium
2975

Hi MVI,

You may try the same steps mentioned above. Let me know if it helps.

Thanks and Regards,
DELL-Sujatha K
Dell Social Media and Community Professional
#iwork4Dell

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2975

Many users are having the same problem on the XPS8100 as reported on other forums. While Dell may not have tested the XPS8100 on Win 8 that does not mean that drivers ARE incompatible. I have been running each available version of Windows 8 since March 2012 with no problems until Win 8.1 has caused the intermittent disconnect failure. The Microsoft upgrade adviser programs for both Win 8 and Win 8.1 show that the XPS8100 and all of its hardware (including the Broadcom  adapter) are compatible. My experience with Win 8 would agree with that assessment, Win 8.1 not so much.

The present Broadcom driver installed on my system is 15.6.1.2 dated 1/29/2013. Windows reports that it is the correct driver when doing "Update Driver" or attempting to install a different driver. Its hard to believe that a 3-year older driver would be better. My work-around experiment is to connect to my wireless network using a USB adapter. So far that's working well but time will tell. I will also try a USB>Ethernet adapter later this week.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2975

Thanks for the response, Sujatha.

I'm giving your suggestion a try to see what happens.  It takes about two hours for the disconnect to happen on my system, so I'll do my normal stuff throughout the afternoon and post another response once I can see what happens.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2975

I resolved this issue by installing a new Intel Network Adaptor card. Cost about $30. Now my internet connection does not drop.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2975

My connection has been solid for over seven hours now, so this trick seems to have worked for me.  Thanks for the suggestion.  Hopefully an updated driver will be released down the road that will allow me to not have to use this workaround.  For now, I'm just happy to not be experiencing the problems anymore.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2975

I had the same system and problem as Willenator, and can attest that the Windows 7 driver fix is working fine for me as well. I've had no disconnects since last night.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
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Network is stable now for 48 hours.

Thanks for the hint!!!

Would any of the followers of this topic please be so kind to leave a message here when (if?) there is a fix of the driver for Win8.1?

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