The issue you are experiencing sound like a hardware problem with the Intel Centrino Advanced N-6230 card. However, let me ask you a couple of things...
- Can you actually see any networks (Under Intel Proset software) if you press the "Scan for networks" option?
If you cannot see any networks,
- Did you check that the hardware switch is on?
Is the hardware installed properly with the set of drivers provided by the computer manufacturer?
- Do you even see it listed on device manager?
Some computers might require to press a combination of keys to activate/disable the hardware radio (Combinations may vary), so since it's a 3-week old system, you may want to talk to Dell* for a warranty replacement if none of that works.
Anyhow, hope that helps a bit!
Took about three days of digging, searching, and tweaking, but I finally got the problem resolved. Turns out that under the Power Options settings there is one for the WiFi card. For some odd reason, by default it is set in power saver mode. For my card and laptop combo at least, that meant when I pulled the laptop of the AC power supply, the WiFi card would shut down.
Switched the setting to Maximum Performance and the laptop hasn't quit since. A true WTF moment! Why on earth would anyone set a laptop WiFi card to shut down when the laptop is running on batteries??
Anyway, a learning experience and one I won't forget. Appreciate your reply, Stitchz.