I'm quite well versed with issues pertaining wired and wireless networking but this issue has had me stumped for quite a while - almost a week. I tried creating an account on these parts but was denied access until today. Thankfully I've managed to create an account and hope that the issue could come to some manner or form of disclosure.
First off system's specs:
Intel E6750 @ stock w/stock(copper slugged) cooler
2x1GB Transcend DDR2 ram sticks
1x 160GB Seagate HDD
1x 640GB Samsung HDD
1x Asus DVD Writer
Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
400W cheap PSU
El cheapo Chinese Chassis
The system belongs to a friend of mine and while I was instructed to perform a reinstall of Windows 7 on the machine, I thought I'd try and update the rest of the internals by either
a| BIOS updates
b| latest software/drivers meant for the board
c| make the onboard LAN active even though the system is connected wirelessly via a USB dongle.
or all the above.
Upon scouring Intel's product support page, I managed to update BIOS from version 0216 to version 0572 while I was able to pool the latest drivers from the aforementioned support site with a few more off here and there. Realtek had the latest audio drivers so that is where I naturally sourced the latest drivers. An issue became apparent when I couldn't log on to the www in spite of having an ethernet wire hooked to the ethernet port. I could clearly see that the power status LED was well lit(green) though the second status LED was not showing any form of activity. Mind you the drivers used for the Intel ethernet adapter was Intel Pro v20.1. I figured that the drivers might be the issue here, proceeded to uninstall and then reinstall the drivers using a previous version v15.3 but the same issue presented itself. I went over to Device Manger and there I see a device under the Networking tab with a yellow exclamation mark flagging an issue. Upon right clicking and entering into properties, the first tab showed that the device cannot start with an "error code 10" displayed. If I disabled the NIC in Device Manger and tried to find a solution in Network adapter settings, I notice that the device pops up but is shown to be disabled. In excitement I enabled the device in Network Manager but upon a refresh the device disappears.
When disabled I can right click on the NIC and sift through it's properties albeit are inactive/greyed out. I've tried uninstalling the device drivers from both Device Manger and Control Panel while using device driver files found off a Microsoft WHQL driver pack v17.4(courtesy of Intel) and although the drivers for the culprit NIC is installed with 82566DC-2 being detected I'm unable to get any use out of it. With the NIC enabled and showing the yellow exclamation mark, I ran ipconfig/all in an elevated CMD and couldn't find the NIC. I double checked by connecting the Realtek USB wireless dongle and the dongle popped up without flinching. I also tried pinging 127.0.0.1 with the same results always and there is no data loss. I've also removed CMOS battery for 30+mins before replacing it yet no dice. Why is this behaving like that? I did clean out the ethernet port using a cotton swab and some isopropyl alcohol, cleaning it off of lint and dust.
I'm stumped at this issue and can't get the system to log onto the internet since my router just gave up the ghost. I've disabled the NIC in BIOS while removing traces of the drivers files on the OS. I will perform a clean install again if necessary although I've done it 3 times. Ruled out a corrupt installer and recreated the installer multiple times with an ISO I had back when Windows 7 was available from Digital River. If there is some form of disclosure to this madness then I'd be grateful for the time input to this thread. I don't mind leaving it disabled but I'd like to pass on the news to my friend due to reasons of trust.