Jan 23, 2012
I reformatted my HDD (needed to do that anyway) and re-installed Windows 7 and all drivers (Chipset 1st) from my Dell CD after messing up a recovery test.
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Everything seemed fine. But now, when I am surfing the Internet, I sometimes lose the connection. The icon in the Taskbar has a yellow exclamation point. (This does not happen in Slackware on the same machine, just in Windows 7.)
The first time this happened, I couldn't ping my router, so I checked all cables, cable modem, and router. But they were all fine and my other (really old desktop running Puppy Linux) was still connected fine and could surf to new web pages.
I did "ipconfig /release" and "ipconfig /renew" on the Dell in Windows 7 and the NIC got the correct IP address and gateway. Now I could ping the router, but I could not ping the Internet, which didn't make any sense, since the other computer was accessing the Internet just fine on the same router! (No IP address confilict exists, and gateway was correct on both machines.) I tried updating the driver, but no new drivers were found. This first time, the issue was resolved by rebooting Windows 7. I also unchecked the setting to turn off the NIC to save power. (I just checked the USB hubs per another post, and it's also unchecked.)
The second time this happened, "ipconfig /renew" failed! I set everything manually (including DNS servers), and on reboot, it still wasn't working. I did a complete shutdown of the computer and startup, now it works again.
So here I am looking for a new driver (64-bit, signed). Not only is there not a new driver...they don't even list the current driver! The only one listed is from March 2010, my driver is June 2011. Current driver is version 7.46.610.2011. Where is there a newer Realtek driver? And why are this things so buggy more than a year after 7 came out, especially if these are supposedly signed by Microsoft?