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Dell laptop: Your ethernet adapter has died

scrivenerjonesscrivenerjones Registered User regular
edited February 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
So I have this new Dell XPS M1530, with Windows 7 64-bit. Everything worked great until yesterday, when I innocently allowed Windows Update to update the drivers for the ethernet card (it's a Marvell Yukon 88E8040). Now it shows all signs of being dead--no lights when the cable is plugged in, Windows tells me "Network cable unplugged" even though it's not, and so on. And so that I wouldn't feel like an idiot when someone suggested, I tested the ethernet cable and the socket on the router on a different machine, and everything on that end checks out.

The weird part (imo) is that I ran the newfangled Windows Restore, picked a restore point that was well before the fateful update... and it's still dead. I also tried deleting the driver and installing a fresh one right from Marvell's web site, to no avail. So now I'm thinking maybe the card up and died? The machine is new enough that it makes sense, although I would have expected a bum card to have died back in mid-January when I bought it.

I know, down in my soul, that this is going to end with me on the phone with some hopeless Dell customer service rep. But if you have any other ideas for me before I take that step, I would be much appreciative.

Post edited by scrivenerjones on

Comments

  • EeveelutionEeveelution Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    So I have this new Dell XPS M1530, with Windows 7 64-bit. Everything worked great until yesterday, when I innocently allowed Windows Update to update the drivers for the ethernet card (it's a Marvell Yukon 88E8040). Now it shows all signs of being dead--no lights when the cable is plugged in, Windows tells me "Network cable unplugged" even though it's not, and so on. And so that I wouldn't feel like an idiot when someone suggested, I tested the ethernet cable and the socket on the router on a different machine, and everything on that end checks out.

    The weird part (imo) is that I ran the newfangled Windows Restore, picked a restore point that was well before the fateful update... and it's still dead. I also tried deleting the driver and installing a fresh one right from Marvell's web site, to no avail. So now I'm thinking maybe the card up and died? The machine is new enough that it makes sense, although I would have expected a bum card to have died back in mid-January when I bought it.

    I know, down in my soul, that this is going to end with me on the phone with some hopeless Dell customer service rep. But if you have any other ideas for me before I take that step, I would be much appreciative.


    It should still be under warranty, so it shouldn't be too bad for you. Best bet is to roll back the drivers, which you did try. Or if you can, try to update Windows 7 once more. Sometimes their fixes break something that then gets fixed again.

    PS3 Tag: cryptzicle Cryptzicle the DK
  • scrivenerjonesscrivenerjones Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Yeah that's kind of what I figured. The machine came with Vista, though, and I reformatted and installed a (legit) copy of 7, so I was worried they might freak out about that. But it's (theoretically) a pure hardware issue, so it shouldn't matter, right?

  • EeveelutionEeveelution Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Yeah that's kind of what I figured. The machine came with Vista, though, and I reformatted and installed a (legit) copy of 7, so I was worried they might freak out about that. But it's (theoretically) a pure hardware issue, so it shouldn't matter, right?

    As much as this would suck, have you considered trying to roll it back to vista?


    And it should be a hardware issue yes.

    PS3 Tag: cryptzicle Cryptzicle the DK
  • scrivenerjonesscrivenerjones Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    I hadn't considered that, but 1. I'd rather die; and 2. the card worked without a hitch for the first two weeks or so, so I dunno how that could be helpful.

  • Torque MonkeyTorque Monkey Registered User
    edited February 2010
    If the port has no activity lights, that means if nothing else it isn't getting power. Check your power options and set it to high performance for a quick test; otherwise, go in to advanced and make sure it isn't somehow set to disable to save battery life.

    Is the AC adapter currently plugged in? If not, give it a shot. Boot to safe mode just for the hell of it to check, try another ethernet cable and don't forget to check Device Manager to see if your card still shows up as a detected device. If all of these come up with the same results, it's probably shot.

    Gojira2.png
  • scrivenerjonesscrivenerjones Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Lookin' good from Device Manager's point of view:

    1266372321.png

    Cable was tested minutes ago. Guess I will try Safe Mode next before I get Dell on the horn.

  • Torque MonkeyTorque Monkey Registered User
    edited February 2010
    My bad, missed the part with the cable. If the computer hasn't disabled it because of a power saving feature, my money at this point would be that she's dead, jim.

    Gojira2.png
  • AsiinaAsiina Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Sorry that I can't give a better description, I'm not very computer savvy, but I had this same problem with my Dell laptop. It just stopped recognizing the cable one day. Everything was exactly like what you said (including it appearing to work fine in the Device Manager), and doing all of the things you said it didn't work either. At one point I had opened up the computer for something unrelated and after starting it back up it ran this really long, detailed scan that I don't really know the name of. It took at least 30 minutes and was before it actually booted into windows.

    After that, it the port just suddenly worked again. I hope someone can decipher what I've said into something useful. I just know that I had this exact problem and no calls to terrible Dell support or replacement parts were necessary.

  • scrivenerjonesscrivenerjones Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    The ol' mystery scan, eh? I will give it a shot!

  • AsiinaAsiina Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    I know, I'm the least helpful person ever.

    People who are not quite as unhelpful as me have informed me that what I am describing is chkdsk.

  • Torque MonkeyTorque Monkey Registered User
    edited February 2010
    chkdsk /f
    chkdsk /r
    sfc /scannow

    Those are the most likely one's I can think of, all ran through command prompt. If the required service for your wired port isn't running due to some sort of file corruption, that could technically disable it, and that may resolve it. Worth a shot.

    Gojira2.png
  • EeveelutionEeveelution Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    The ol' mystery scan, eh? I will give it a shot!

    The mystery scan would be a check disk scan.

    This basically goes through and checks the volumes (drives) for errors and can correct a lot of major problems.

    Always a blast running this and having "Windows has recovered from a serious error" Flash when you boot up.

    30 minutes isn't bad, I've done this on my old desk top to recover it and it took almost 5 hours.

    PS3 Tag: cryptzicle Cryptzicle the DK
  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited February 2010
    chkdsk /f
    chkdsk /r
    sfc /scannow

    Those are the most likely one's I can think of, all ran through command prompt. If the required service for your wired port isn't running due to some sort of file corruption, that could technically disable it, and that may resolve it. Worth a shot.

    chkdsk /r
    will automatically run chkdsk /f /r in its place, so the first one is redundant.

    But, yes, chkdsk is the scan that likes to appear when Windows has shut down unexpectedly.

  • AsiinaAsiina Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Scared the shit out of me the first time it ran since it was after opening up my laptop for the first time. I was so sure I broke something. But instead it fixed a longstanding problem!

    Worth a shot.

  • OverOver ...laser cats? Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    I have the same model of XPS, and while I'm on 32-Bit Vista instead of 7, I have this same problem occasionally.

    For me, it happens when I move from campus to home with a hibernate in between. To get it working again I typically have to restart my router and the laptop to get it working again. No amount of repairing or tinkering with the drivers/network options seems to work, and I have no idea why it happens other than my router doesn't always get along with everything.

    Just something else to try that's simple before you get into heavy scans and such.

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