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Windows 10: WiFi Network Not Found After Hibernation

February 29th, 2016 Leave a comment Go to comments

Windows 10 is definitely better than Windows 8 and 8.1 in terms of usability. I find myself using my labtop a lot more after upgrade from the factory installed 8.0. Compared with Windows 7, however, I don’t see much difference and that is why I haven’t taken advantage of the free upgrade from Microsoft on my desktop.

After the upgrade to Windows 10, I got into a big problem – everytime I put the laptop to sleep, it actually shut down. That made me wonder why recovering from sleep took so much time. Upon watching it closely, I figured out that the sleep mode didn’t actually work on my Lenovo U410. Later, I had to manually change control panel to replace sleep mode with hibernate mode. With that change, it recovers a lot faster and all the applications remain as before. The hibernate is not as fast as sleep mode but good enough for me.

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That change is not perfect though. Sooner I found another small yet annoying issue – the computer cannot find any Wifi at a coffee store. I knew the Wifi was there perfectly because my smart phone connected to it well. When I opened the task bar on Windows 10, the network popup list said “No Wi-Fi Networks Found.”

One obvious solution is to restart the computer, but that is the last thing I want to do given many works ongoing. So I first tried to bring it to airplane mode so that the WiFi is turned off and exit that mode, in hope that it would reset something. But it did not work.

With a few times of failure with the WiFi on and off, I decided to do something with the device manager. I figured if I disable and then enable the WiFi device adapter there, it would probably force the driver to reload itself. It turned out it worked. Here is how it’s done.

First open the Device Manager. You can simply type in the name in the search field on the task bar and get hold of it.

Second, from the left side pane find the WiFi adapter. The path is like this:

Network adapters
   Intel(R) Centrino(R) Wireless-N 2230

Third, right click on the device driver and select the Disable. When confirming, just answer yes.

Lastly, right click the adapter again, and select the “Enable” menu item. You can optionally close the device manager.

Now, go back to the Wireless network list and you will find the WiFi networks showing up there.

From the troubleshooting, I have no clear say on who to blame: Microsoft, Intel, or Lenovo. But the trick works well and saves me many restarts.

PS, the Windows 10 WiFi related GUI is not well designed. The buttons for available and airplane mode are a bit confusing. By looking at the button color, I had no clear clue whether it’s available or not available.

Got into another issue with the WiFi – the wireless was not stable and it failed almost every other pages. I was even thinking to buy one of these tiny USB WiFi adapters before I found this Youtube video which offers a nice fix. Basically, you want to right click on the Intel(R) Centrino(R) Wireless-N 2230 adapter for the properties menu item. In the Advanced tab of the dialog box, select the property “8.2.11g Channel Widdth for band 2.4” and change its value from 20 MHz Only to Auto. After saving the change, I have now a much stable Wireless connection.

  1. April 5th, 2016 at 16:44 | #1

    I totally agree with you that Windows 10 is definitely better than Windows 8. I tend to find Windows 10 to be more user friendly than Windows 8. I also noted that when I put my laptop to sleep, it shuts down. I also face the same challenge of the laptop not finding Wifi. I solve that problem by restarting the laptop. However, I am using a Toshiba Satellite Ultrathin. Thanks for sharing that, I am going to try and see how it goes.

  2. tsssys
    August 6th, 2017 at 09:12 | #2

    Thanks for the tip. The Broadcom adapter on my Asus laptop started this consistent behavior after a recent Windows 10 update. Disabling and re-enabling the adapter in Device Manager works perfectly to bring back the wireless network list.

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