Why Windows 8 Wireless Keep Disconnecting – Top Five Troubleshooting Technique

I’ve seen first hand with some Windows 8 devices that the wireless just keeps dropping and even after reconnected. If you just got a new Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 laptop or desktop and are experiencing the same problem, here are a few steps you can try to troubleshoot your wireless connectivity issues. Some of the methods presented here might not be Windows 8 specific as they can also be applied to Windows 7 and other older versions of Windows as well.

Method 1: Locate Wireless Network Sidebar Toggle Between Airplane Mode

One of the quick ways to fix this is to toggle between Airplane mode on the top of a list of Networks. This acts as a software switch that will turn on and off your wireless device on your laptop. It will also refresh a list of wireless networks near by.

Forget_This_Network-1

Method 2: Forget A Specific Wireless Network And Reset Connectivity Credential

If the first method doesn’t work for you, then you can try and use this method to reset the connection. First, right click on the network you wish to connect to, click Forget this network. This will remove all settings Windows 8 has on this network, and just make sure this works, toggle airplane mode again after forget this network. When this network reappear again enter the credential and connect to the network.

Method 3: Reorder Wireless Network

It might be the case that one of your preferred wireless network is not at the higher precedence as some other wireless networks. You can rearrange the order of your preferred wireless network, to always connect to it first before letting Windows to try and connect to other networks lower on the rank. This method works not only with Windows 8 but also Windows 7, Vista and XP as well.

First Go to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center

On the left click > Manage wireless network. This will open a list of wireless networks that you computer has ever connected to.

manage wireless network

Find the corresponding wireless network, you can right click > Move Up or Move Down to change the order of wireless network. Or you can just select the network and click Move up and  Move down from the top menu. The higher wireless network order the higher the precedence it will have. Windows will go through the list of networks here and as soon as it find the highest wireless network available to connect to it will always connect to that network first.

order wireless network

Method 4: Prevent Other Network From Connecting

If method 3 is a white list, this is more like a black list. By going through all the wireless networks that you don’t wish to connect to, you can change the default Connection setting to not “Connect automatically when this network is in range”. At the same step as in method 3, right click on the wireless network > Click Properties.

uncheck auto connect

This will open up the property panel of the wireless network. By default all the wireless network will have this option checked to allow auto connect. “Connect automatically when this network is in range” you can uncheck it to make sure the wireless network never connects automatically without your permission.

Method 5: Update Wireless Driver

As a matter of fact, you should keep all your device driver up to date. Many people might heard of the concept to keep their drive up to date but never manage to do it or don’t know how to do it. We have over a dozen articles on how to manage your device driver, the latest tool we’ve covered is an all-in-one device driver utility that scans and updates all device driver on your machine. Check our Driver Bootster at a more in-depth level. It’s a great tool that saves you the trouble to look up the drivers on your device, this is something Microsoft still lacks.

Method 6: Using the built-in troubleshoot feature

Or, you can just use the built-in troubleshoot feature that has been significantly improved in both Windows 8 and 8.1. Simply click the network icon down in the system tray, or through the network charm bar, and choose Troubleshoot Problems. Windows will then automatically run through a few steps trying to identify where the problem is and to fix it if it finds anything unusual.

Network adapter - troubleshoot problems

Network adapter – troubleshoot problems

Method 7: Restart your computer

Well, if none of them worked, it’s time to restart your computer, completely shut it down and boot it up again in a few seconds.

Conclusion

I can almost 100% guaranteed that one of the methods listed here will help you out when troubleshooting wireless network connectivity problems. If all the above failed to fix your wireless network issues, chances are it might not be your device’s problem, it could be poor signal, wireless interference etc. All in all, the last method is something you should always consider doing from time to time to keep your computer fresh and achieve the best performance it can.

Jonathan Hu

Programming by day, Web Development, Canucks & Movies for spare time!
Co-founder of Next of Windows and a cool geek 🙂

Last updated: 08/04/2014

Posted in: How to , Tips & Tricks
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Martin Shelton
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Must be doing something wrong! I have multiply Win 8 machines and none do this!

Kent Chen
Guest

Lucky you…haha…but it does start happening on my surface tablet with 8.1.

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