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How to connect a L1350 notebook to wireless network

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I bought an MSI L1350 Netbook with a standard second-generation Intel N450 Atom processor for $230 last weekend which has an additional $30 rebate. The Ralink 802.11 b/g/n mini PCI-E adapter that comes with the netbook has some very buggy drivers that cause Wi-Fi to intermittently disconnect or fail to find any network. An even bigger problem is the fact that its drivers seem to cause Windows 7 to completely hang requiring a hard reboot.

I have found a solution that seems to have fixed the random Wi-Fi problems by updating to the latest Ralink drivers posted in March of 2010. The system hasn't hanged due to Wi-Fi drivers in two weeks now. These are signed drivers so they are legitimate and you will not get a certificate warning. If you happen to own this netbook or something with a similar network adapter, I would highly recommend updating the drivers. It's generally a good idea to update all your drivers anyways.

Another problem I've found is the Intel 3150 graphics driver blue screen of death when trying to launch Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder 3.1 (which is a very good free video capture and encoder software that allows you to broadcast high quality directly to sites like Ustream). This problem affects all netbooks with the N450 CPU. The only way to fix this was to update the Intel 3150 integrated graphics driver and you can obtain a copy of it here on Intel's site.

It sucks to have to get a consumer product that crashes so badly out of the box. It's even hard for me to handle and I can't imagine the frustration that normal users would have. This blog post should help you a lot if you managed to land here after googling these problems.

Posted on Oct 05, 2010

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