Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4A Wireless Network Adapter crashes

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by ATIVQ, Jul 8, 2020.

  1. ATIVQ

    ATIVQ V⅁O⅄ Senior Member

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    The Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4A / Liteon NFA344A / Killer 1535 wireless network adapter has been plaguing some popular tablet PCs - Surface Go, Surface Laptop 3, Yoga 720 and 920, Acer, Asus, Dell, and other devices.

    After some fateful Windows update (for me it was Windows 10 2004) the Qualcomm WiFi adapter crashes when both Bluetooth and 2.4GHz WiFi (b/g/n) are active. Sometimes it takes down all of Windows with it, other times it cannot be re-enabled without a reboot. WiFi adapters shouldn't crash even if there's Bluetooth interference on their frequency! I'm waiting for the Intel 8265 replacement WiFi adapter to arrive in the mail and take me out of my misery.

    • Run regedit.exe
    • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\bthserv\Parameters (you can paste the address in the address bar at the top)
    • Create a DWORD value named ChannelAvoidanceRange
    • Set its value to 50 (hexadecimal) or 80 (decimal).
    Bluetooth and WiFi have to be enabled on boot, otherwise Bluetooth doesn't respect the registry value. Paired but not-connected devices trigger a search that goes over the full spectrum and crashes the WiFi, remove any unconnected devices from the Windows Bluetooth settings.

    In case of a crash, WiFi can be recovered by changing any setting in the Advanced tab in the WiFi device's properties in Device Manager.

    Installed the compatible replacement Intel 8265 M.2. Goodbye Atheros, hope I never see you again.

    After a couple of days with the Intel WiFi adapter, it's clear the quality-of-life improvement is huge. Never worry about the computer crashing, never worry about USB 3 or Thunderbolt devices disconnecting the WiFi or the WiFi interrupting a write operation on a USB 3 device... only now I realize how awful the Atheros adapter was.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2020
  2. thierryb

    thierryb Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Thanks. I had the same issue few days ago. I lost either bluetooth or wifi. But more often bluetooth. The last time it was harder to recover them. I have a Go, and I have not yet upgraded to 2004.
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