When using Windows 7 and Windows Vista, you might sometimes encounter issues when connecting you laptop to Wi-Fi enabled hotspots. This issue include poor performance as well as having the wireless network connection dropped altogether. You may experience random connectivity issues when you connect a Windows7 or Windows Vista-based mobile PC to certain Wi-Fi “hot spots.
These connectivity issues include the following:
- The wireless network connection is dropped.
- You experience poor performance.
These issues are mostly noticed when using the laptop on battery power. Microsoft confirms that this issue occurs if the Wi-Fi hot spot uses wireless APs or routers that do not support the 802.11 power save protocol.
This issue occurs because of the power saving features that are included in Windows Vista and Windows 7. The default power plan that Windows Vista and Windows 7 uses for a mobile PC is the Balanced power plan. The following is true for mobile PCs that are configured to use the Balanced power plan:
- When the mobile PC is plugged into a power source, the wireless network adapter is configured to use Maximum Performance mode. This turns off 802.11 power save mode.
- When the mobile PC is running on battery power, the wireless network adapter is configured to use Medium Power Save mode. This uses the 802.11 power save mode.
If you are facing this issue, you can check out the workaround for this issue as suggested by Microsoft (KB Article: 928152).
This involves changing the power plan when using Wi Fi and battery power.
More details available here.