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Vista better at detecting HW?

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  • Vista better at detecting HW?

    I ran into an "interesting" dilemma. A user had an XP laptop that powered off when he inserted a USB drive. The laptop wouldn't power on after that so I stuck the drive in another laptop but it had given up the ghost. I examined the old laptop and found a USB port was damaged with one of the contacts touching the frame. I bent it back and the laptop worked fine after that. I put in a new drive and installed XP but the network adapters weren't detected. I tried replacing the wifi card but that still didn't work. I thought maybe a PCMCIA NIC would work but no luck.

    I figured I'd just write the laptop off but someone needed a Vista test machine so I told them I have a spare laptop with no NICs but they said that was fine so I installed Vista on the laptop. Lo and behold, the network adapters showed up in Vista and functioned perfectly. This surprised me so I figured I give XP another chance but it still didn't detect them.

    Has anyone else run into this issue?

  • #2
    Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

    did you reinstall XP or switch back to the XP partition?
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    • #3
      Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

      I did a reinstall.

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      • #4
        Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

        Should this be moved to the XP forum?

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        • #5
          Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

          Good point, thread moved. Was it a reinstall over itself, or a format and reinstall?
          ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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          • #6
            Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

            I formatted the XP installation and installed Vista which detected the network adapters. I did another format of the Vista installation before installing XP again which still didn't detect the adapters.

            Does Vista use a more robust method to detect hardware?

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            • #7
              Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

              I am not sure if this is the same issue but recently or at least in the the last 6 months I have come across a number of Dell Inspiron laptops that seem to exhibit strange behaviour after SP3 has been installed. Basically even with a cable plugged in correctly, the network card states that the cable is unplugged and not inserted.

              First attempt was to reinstall drivers, then uninstall SP3, no joy.

              2nd Attempt, returned system to factory default and lo and behold network card now working.

              I have seen this with both Broadcom and Intel network card hardware. The common issue has been the manufacturer, Dell.

              I am not really answering your question but it is a mystery to me!

              Cheers,

              Jewen.

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              • #8
                Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

                Originally posted by aquadodo View Post
                I ran into an "interesting" dilemma. A user had an XP laptop that powered off when he inserted a USB drive. The laptop wouldn't power on after that so I stuck the drive in another laptop but it had given up the ghost. I examined the old laptop and found a USB port was damaged with one of the contacts touching the frame. I bent it back and the laptop worked fine after that. I put in a new drive and installed XP but the network adapters weren't detected. I tried replacing the wifi card but that still didn't work. I thought maybe a PCMCIA NIC would work but no luck.

                I figured I'd just write the laptop off but someone needed a Vista test machine so I told them I have a spare laptop with no NICs but they said that was fine so I installed Vista on the laptop. Lo and behold, the network adapters showed up in Vista and functioned perfectly. This surprised me so I figured I give XP another chance but it still didn't detect them.

                Has anyone else run into this issue?
                When you mean the network adapters weren't detected, do you mean that there was nothing in DeviceManager? Not even Ethernet Controller? Or that the drivers were not picked up? XP is not the greatest HW detector and as you said Vista is leaps and bounds ahead of XP. More often than not when rebuilding an XP machine from scratch i make it a rule of thumb to have the NIC drivers handy in a cd/flash drive.

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                • #9
                  Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

                  Jewen - It is an Inspiron so I'll try resetting to factory defaults. I also thought about a BIOS update but it already has the latest.

                  IceNine - Nothing was listed in Device Manager even after trying to scan for new HW. I tried installing the drivers anyways but no luck.

                  I actually ran into a similar issue but this time it was a CD drive that didn't work in XP but I installed Win 7 and the drive worked fine. I'm now curious as to how HW detection differs between the versions so does anyone have any good reads on the subject?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

                    Just thought I would clarify the issues that I have come across. In all cases the network card has been visible in Network connections however when a cable has been attached and plugged into a network, the icon remains in a not connected state.

                    I have only come across this with Dell manufactured systems. Mainly inspiron laptops but also one Dimension desktop. I can only assume that SP3 replaces or changes the way the network card communicates with the operating system.

                    I have seen something similar with USB wireless dongles not being able to authenticate properly on a network after SP3. Unfortunately I have not been able to find a fix.

                    Hopefully you will be sucessful in restoring the card back to working order.

                    Jewen.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

                      Interesting...
                      did you maybe try installing the latest chipset drivers? Eventhough i think this may be a strech, if the proper chipset drivers are installed the mainboard might play better with XP? that is indeed very odd. Reminds me of the old win95 days.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Vista better at detecting HW?

                        Jewen - Your situation is different from mine (at least you could see the network adapters) but thanks for the suggestion. I tried resetting the defaults but didn't have any luck.

                        IceNine - I'll give the chipset drivers a try. I'm open to anything but I don't have much more time to experiment because the end user is expecting their Vista system soon and I can't keep them waiting forever (as much as I'd like to )

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