So, today I bought this machine (Croatian site but you should be able to analyze the specs). There were no CD's in the box. Fortunately, the Windows Update service (I installed Win 7 x64) was able to find drivers for all the components...

... except one - the WLAN controller.

So, this is my Device manager:

Device manager

and the Network connections:

Network connections

As you can see, the WLAN controller is labeled "Network controller" and there is a yellow triangle (meaning "no drivers available").

You can also see that I have a Bluetooth connection and a LAN connection, but a WLAN connection does not exist on that notebook.

Now, the first thing I did was go to the lenovo drivers page. Scroll down to the "Networking - Wireless" section and you will see that there are drivers available for Intel-branded WLAN controllers. Those drivers won't help me since my machine is based on an AMD solution (I actually did install them and they didn't solve the issue, so I uninstalled them).

So, where can I find the drivers for my WLAN controller?

Update: I found the driver here.

The above link is listed on this PCIdatabase page.


Start by going to PCIdatabase.com

Get the info from the properties page of the device in device manager

Find the offending item and right click

Click Properties

Click Details

Choose Hardware Ids

The VID (example VID_413c) is the vendor id, plug it in to pcidatabase.com to get the vendor.

The PID (exmaple PID_B007) is the product ID, do the same as above for the product.

Combine those, google, and have fun.

  • @francis Thanks. I'm trying that right now... – Šime Vidas May 25 '11 at 22:59
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    Also, just because it is based on an AMD chipset doesnt mean it isnt using an Intel card....Stranger things have happened...haha. – user76211 May 25 '11 at 22:59
  • @francis I think I found the device - it's this one – Šime Vidas May 25 '11 at 23:00
  • @francis The name of the chip appears to be RTL8188CE which is indeed a WLAN controller (according to my Google search). – Šime Vidas May 25 '11 at 23:03
  • Using that info, the first post is from a toshiba forum user having issues with the card. He mentions his model #, which you can then take to Toshiba's page, find the drivers for said card, and apply them to your laptop. forums.toshiba.com/t5/Networking-Wi-Fi/… – user76211 May 25 '11 at 23:05

You should have ThinkVantage System Update installed. Just run that. It will get you all the relevant driver and ThinkVantage updates for your specific ThinkPad model. If for some reason you do not have it, you can download it here.

There are times where the drivers from the component manufacturer has caused problems. The ones from System Update will be fine, and if any problem is found, they will be be updated again within a few days.

If you ever reinstalled Windows without using the recovery discs, just install System Update first, run it, and you're done.


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