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Old 05-01-2009
streetlitkid streetlitkid is offline
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Exclamation Help with networking/connections and drivers

I have a dell inspiron 1501 notebook with Vista SP1 and a Dell Wireless 1505 802.11n WLAN mini-card. I have had the laptop for two years and did not have the current problem when I first purchased the laptop.

I have searched google and many other forums and have come across several others with the same problem but none that had a solution.

The problem began approximately three months after I bought the computer when I began having issues with my video card. The problem is in no way related to the video, but when I installed new drivers for the video the dell driver support website recommended I install three new drivers for my wifi card (screenshot attached). I shouldn't have, but I did. From that moment on I have had the current problem.

The network notification icon stopped working and began to display only a red X. When hovering the mouse over the icon it says "Connection status: unknown. No such interface supported" (screenshot attached). However, when I go to connect to a network, windows still displays all networks and allows me to connect to them (screenshot attached). I was a little annoyed and tried unsuccessfully to fix the problem. When I was not able to easily remedy the issue I gave up. Since the problem did not actually affect my ability to use the internet I simply removed the icon from the taskbar and forgot about it.

Recently I purchased an external hard drive which was intended to be shared over the network with the other members of my household. The hard drive is plugged into another computer and I need to be able to access it over the network from my laptop. However, when I went to my network and sharing center I was reminded of the problem that began when I first installed Dell's drivers. I am unable to turn on network discovery and get the same message: "No such interface supported" (screenshot attached).

I went to the control panel and remove programs. There I found three Broadcom programs, including Broadcom Control Suite, along with a Dell wireless internet controller. I removed all four of the programs, then returned to the network and sharing center. The problem was still there.

I then went to device manager. Under network adapters there are two that control my wifi card. They are: Broadcom 440x10/100 Integrated Controller and Dell Wireless 1505 Draft 802.11n WLAN Mini-Card (screenshot attached). I have attempted to uninstall both but when I do Vista immediately and automatically (and without an option to cancel) "found new hardware" and reinstalls it. I attempted numerous times with the same affect. I even changed Vista's settings so that it would not install new hardware or drivers without asking first, yet it did not keep it from installing it again.

I entered safe-mode and tried the same method, but again the drivers were installed again.

I was finally able to remove all of the drivers in safe mode without having them reinstall by choosing the option to install legacy hardware and selecting to manually install the new hardware. From there I selected one of the Intel wifi devices that I believe to have been the one there before I ever installed Dell's drivers. I was then able to successfully remove the others, but when I returned to windows it would attempt to reinstall them again. This time, however, it would say installation failed. The drivers would then show up in device manager with a red X over the dell one. I was then able to uninstall the Dell one without it reinstalling, but as soon as I uninstalled the Broadcom controller one it would install a new WLAN mini-card - this time, though, it was a Broadcom Mini-Card.

Still, the internet did not work and I eventually gave up and reinstalled the drivers from Dell.

I began frantically searching for a solution online. I found an answer as to what was causing it, although it didn't provide me personally with a solution.

The problem (as I'd previously suspected) is caused (according to the answer someone had given) by these Control Centers taking over the job of Vista's network controller. They seem to do the exact same job, but interfere with Vista's ability to operate the networks. Uninstalling the software does not fix the problem. Removing the hardware from device manager along with the drivers does not fix the problem.

Does anyone have any ideas about how to fix the problem? Any helpful advice or tips on how to handle it or get Vista back in control (something I never thought I'd be asking for)? Or can anyone tell me where I went wrong, what I did wrong, or how I messed up in removing everything (aside from initially installing Dell's drivers)?

If any part was unclear, let me know and I'll clarify. If there's anything else you need more information on, please let me know. And if you need more screenshots than the ones provided, tell me and I'll take more. I truly appreciate any consideration you give my problem and would be incredibly grateful to anyone who can provide a solution.

Thanks so much.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg connectionstatus.jpg (57.8 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg networks.jpg (48.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg devicemanager.jpg (93.7 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg drivers.jpg (89.2 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg networksharing2.jpg (81.7 KB, 0 views)
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