Fixing No Wifi in Windows 8 on a Macbook Pro in Boot Camp

This post is a bit outside of the normal realm of photo booths here at PBO I wanted to write down my experience. Today I installed Windows 8 Pro 64-bit RTM (legit I am an MSDN  subscriber) on my MacBook Pro (late 2011) that is running Snow Leopard. While I am a Windows developer and long time user, Apple does create the best Windows hardware I have found.

This post is not to walk you through the whole process of installing Windows on a Mac with boot camp. If you are looking for information about this I recommend you visit Apple's website.

What this post is about is the difficulty I had getting my screen to stop auto dimming and the wireless driver to install.

These are the steps I took to install the boot camp drivers for Windows and the fixes I found for my issues.

 

Installing Boot Camp Drivers for Windows 8

First I installed boot camp 3.0  drivers for Windows. To do this I had to jump a small hurdle and copy the boot camp files locally to my hard-drive. I copied these files to C:\BootCamp on my hard-drive.

Since I installed the 64-bit version of Windows 8 I needed to run the proper installer. Unfortunately this wasn't quite as simple as one would believe, I had to first locate the installer of all things. In my instance it was located at C:\BootCamp\Drivers\Apple and was named BootCamp64.msi. I've bolded the part of the path specific to where I copied the boot camp file., adjust as necessary for you setup.

Next I ran the installer in compatibility mode. I successfully used the "Previous version of Windows" option for this.

I then went through the upgrade chain to get to boot camp 3.3 and ensure I had Apple's latest drivers. You can get these again on Apple's website. Here is a direct link.

After doing this I found two major things that I could not move forward without resolving. My screen would dim and I had no wireless.

 

Resolving Dimming Screen in Windows 8

Disable adaptive brightnessFirst my screen would dim to about 50% seconds after booting into Windows. The brightness adjust was showing 100% though. This was alarming as it was very difficult to read the screen with it so dim. After some digging around I found that this was actually a Windows 8 setting you needed to disable called "Enable adaptive brightness". Apparently this is evil.

You can locate this setting under Control Panel\Hardware and Sound\Power Options\Edit Plan Settings. There click your power plan's Change Plan Settings link and then Change Advanced Power Settings on the next screen. In the dialog locate the "Display" option in the list box and expand it. The last item (though it could be elsewhere in yours I suppose) is Enable adaptive brightness. Expand it and turn it off for both of the options "on battery" and "plugged in".

You now have full control over your screen's brightness.

 

Resolving No Wireless Driver for Windows 8 in Boot Camp

Now for the more perplexing issue of the two, no wireless driver! This ended up costing me a few hours of searching the internet's answer machines (a.k.a. Google and Bing) before finally finding a solution that worked.

As I mentioned above I installed boot camp 3.0 from my Snow Leopard disc and then upgraded it to 3.3. After all this I still had no wireless and a generic "Network Controller" without a driver in Device Manager. I tried extracting the various drivers from the boot camp installation and various updates and installing them separately. None of these worked. Finally I stumbled across this thread and downloaded the first driver listed (I am providing a download below for this same file).

After the download completed I extracted the contents and proceeded to install it manual. If you have not done this in awhile all you need to do is the following.

  1. Go to Device Manager.
  2. Locate the device missing a driver.
  3. Double-click on it and then click the Update Driver button on the dialog.
  4. Select the Browse my computer for driver software option.
  5. Select the Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer option.
  6. Select Network adapters from the as, as we are installing the wireless adapter.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Click Have disk
  9. Navigate to the folder you extracted the driver downloaded (available below) and select the bcmwl6.inf file.
  10. Click OK and follow the rest of the prompts.

You should now have wireless access for your Windows 8 installation!

I hope that this is helpful to others experiencing these same issues that I did. Below you can find a link to the drivers that I used in my installation.

broadcom_v5.100.57.8

  • Nassim

    thank you

  • Rico Alexander

    You sir, are a life saver. Thanks so much.

    • I am glad that it was helpful. I know I was quite frustrated when I ran into it!

  • Michael

    did you extract the driver on windows or on the mac os. i am inexperienced with this stuff and just wanted to know. other that that you were a great help!

    • Glad that the information was helpful. I know last August when I first installed Windows 8 on bootcamp I was rather unhappy with the pain it was. I extracted them on Windows to a temp directory using 7-zip (www.7-zip.org).

  • Fedden

    Thank you this was this was really helpful!!!

    • You're welcome. It is terrible how much of a pain it is.

  • Tai K

    Your a life saver. This is some great information!!! Without you I would have lost it! Thanks again!

  • venu

    Thank you so much. It helped me in big way. Saved my time. Thought of going back to windows 7

  • Jacob

    I am having some issues with this, I have downloaded the driver, but when I go into step 9 I can't find it. I know where I saved it, it just isn't showing up. any hints?

    • Jacob

      Actually, I just tried again, and it looks like it is working. Thank you.

      • Glad to hear you got it. The Apple drivers sure don't make it easy.

  • arbind

    thanku very much.. i solved my wifi problem with this. but yet no sound, plz tell me any sollution for sound. m.arbind82@yahoo.in

  • arbind

    having no sound even drivers are up to date. on mac win8
    ..help me plz

  • Jakk

    err how about just buy a laptop with windows 8 already installed ? Cheaper and less of a hassle.

  • Thanks! Been trying to find this for the past couple days. Wifi works like a charm now!

  • luis75dpi

    Dude thanks very much !!!

  • chris

    Thanks Mike! You're post probably saved me 2 or more days of research and frustration. I did an clean install upgrade to both mountain lion and then windows 8 in boot camp (used to be on snow leopard and windows 7 with parallels) and things are working beautifully. I am so happy that I found your post and have the same macbook you have. The wireless network adapter driver you provided worked great and I can see my screen without straining too.

    Thank you so much for taking the time to clearly spell out the solutions to the problems. I can't believe how smooth AND fast my system is running now.

    • Glad that the post was helpful Chris. Thanks for leaving a comment!

  • Yomi

    Thanks and it was a success after about 3 trials. what about the other drivers such as the camera, Bluetooth and usb controller?

    • You're welcome. I did not experience issues with them that I recall.

  • Sahara

    Thank YOU so MUCH.... You are an ANGEL....XX

    • You're very welcome Sahara, glad it was helpful

  • Joseph

    Buddy you a Gentleman and a Scot! Thanks for your efforts in sharing, appreciated!

    • I am glad that this resource was helpful to you.

  • Chris

    My windows 8 goes into a fixing problem loop. Also there are two drivers so which one would be the one to select?

  • Nash

    I wonder how you managed that but truly sir thanks a million seriously this was really helpful cant seriously explain thanks once again 🙂

  • Jothi

    thanks it worked!
    note: using setup.exe gave error message so following your steps is the way to go.

  • A Man Who Is Curious

    Can someone make a video for the wifi part of this

  • Nu

    I can't tell you how much i appreciate your post! For person that doesn't know much about computer set up, your post is a life saver! Thanks so much!

  • Sarah

    "2. Locate the device missing a driver" am I the only idiot who has no idea what this means??

    • tande89

      would be the yellow '' ! '' @ device manager

  • Brian

    had the video brightness issue for some time now. Thanks for the information. It works as advertised.

  • Ravi Shankar

    i am having the same issue with an additional problem of sound. tried everything bt still its not working pls somebody help send me the link for the driver....

  • Leju

    worked like a charm! thanks!!

  • Tristan

    Thank you so much, worked perfectly.

  • Jai Weaver

    Thankyou so much!! I have been trying to connect my Wi-Fi for hours!! (Remember to re-boot your computer after you finish the steps)

  • Oliver

    I cant connect I can find the wifi but I put the password in and it dosnt work and I cant get lan

  • Joe Hoppe

    This successfully installs, but then I can't enable the device from the device manager. Has anyone had the same experience? 🙁

  • Cas12

    thanks a lot!!!!!!!!!

  • Danny

    Thanks dude - good work. very grateful 🙂

  • wallflower

    The link is dead. Can someone upload is somewhere for me?

  • Roberto

    Thank you so much

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