Quick Checks to Improve or Fix Wi-Fi Connection Issues

Documentation

Troubleshooting

000005493

12/13/2019

What are you seeing?
Wi-Fi connection issues.

Why are you seeing it?
Wi-Fi performance and Wi-Fi connection issues may occur due to a number of reasons. Some examples of these include outdated or incorrect driver version, non-optimal or incorrect network configuration, wireless adapter settings, AP/router configuration, or interference issues.

How to fix it.
Follow the steps below to troubleshoot:

Click or the topic for details:

Driver

Is your driver up to date?

You don't need to update to the latest version unless you encounter issues. You can resolve many issues by updating an out-of-date driver.

To update the driver and software for your Intel® Wireless Adapter:

Note

Your computer manufacturer might have customized drivers and software to enable or alter features, or provide improved operation on your computer.
Contact the manufacturer for the latest updates and technical support information.
If you no longer get driver support from your computer manufacturer, you can download generic Intel drivers.

Wi-Fi Network

Is the Wi-Fi radio on?

If your computer doesn't see any Wi-Fi networks, verify if the Wi-Fi radio is on.
Select your operating system:

Windows® 10Select the Network iconUser-added image on the task tray at the bottom right of the screen. Click the Wi-Fi button to turn it on.
Windows 8.1*Select the Network icon on the task tray at the bottom right of the screen. Click the slider under Wi-Fi to turn it on.
User-added image
Windows 7*Simultaneously press the Windows and X keys. Or, right-click the power iconin the task tray on the bottom right of the screen to launch the Windows Mobility Center.
Select Turn wireless on if wireless is off.
User-added image
Is the Wi-Fi adapter enabled?

Go to Start > Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network Connections, and right-click the adapter. If Disable is displayed as a configuration option, that means the adapter is enabled.

User-added image

AP or Broadband Router

Is the wireless Access Point(AP) or Wi-Fi broadband router functioning?

Verify that your system can connect to your network and the Internet. You may use other Wi-Fi devices such as a smartphone or tablet to verify if the wireless AP or broadband router is functioning. Contact your access point vendor or Internet service provider for assistance.

Is the network adapter detected?

If you get an error message on start or at logon, see possible issues and regulatory requirements.

Interference

How do you check for sources of local interference?

Check for sources of interference, particularly if using IEEE* 802.11 Wi-Fi adapters working in the 2.4 GHz spectrum. Possible interference sources include:

  • Cordless phones that operate in the 5 GHz spectrum
  • Microwave ovens
  • Bluetooth® technology-enabled devices
How do you identify interference or contention from other Wi-Fi Networks?

Make sure the channel your access point or wireless router is using isn't overlapping or in use by another nearby access point.

  • Software tools such as MetaGeek inSSIDer* help you select the best channel for your access point or wireless router.
  • If using 2.4 GHz band, use only channels 1, 6, or 11.
  • If using the 5 GHz band, use channels 36, 40, 44, or 48.
How do you disable automatic channel selection?

Some access points or wireless routers try to automatically select the best channel to use. The auto-selection can happen at startup or on-the-fly during normal operation. If you are experiencing random disconnects from the network, try the following:

  • Disable the AUTO setting and manually select a channel.
  • Software tools such as MetaGeek inSSIDer* help you select the best channel for your access point or wireless router.
  • If using 2.4 GHz band, use only channels 1, 6 or 11.

Settings

How do you verify and adjust power management settings? How can those settings cause potential connection issues?

The power management or the Power Save Polling (PSP) setting lets you select a balance between power consumption and Wi-Fi adapter performance. See Setting Wireless Adapter Power Management to learn how to change the setting.
You may have connection issues with a Wi-Fi Access Point (AP) that doesn't support the PSP feature. See Power Save Polling Causes Connection Issues with Access Points for details.

Note Lowering the power management setting can cause the battery to discharge more rapidly when not connected to a power source.
How do you check roaming settings?

Verify that the adapter property setting for roaming aggressiveness isn't at the minimum or the maximum. Learn how to configure the adapter settings.

What are the recommended 802.11n settings?

Review the recommended settings for 802.11n connectivity. These include using WPA2-AES security and 5 GHz. If you are using 2.4 GHz, we recommend narrow channels.
 

Note We recommend using channel bonding in the 5 GHz band. Channel bonding is helpful due to the limited available non-overlapping channels in the 2.4 GHz band.
What are the recommended 802.11ac settings?

See recommended settings for 802.11ac connectivity

If you've tested all the troubleshooting suggestions above and still have the Wi-Fi Connection Issues, please contact your system manufacturer or click Contact Support below to find the support options for your region. Be ready to explain the steps you tried.

Related topics
Fix network connection issues in Windows 10
How to Access and Configure Advanced Wi-Fi Adapter Settings
Frequently Asked Questions about Intel® Wireless Adapters
Recommended Settings for 802.11ac Connectivity
Download the Latest Driver for Your Intel® Wireless Adapter
Support for Linux Users