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Wi-Fi Issues with 1435/1535/1525 on Debian, Ubuntu, and Arch

Some users have noted Wi-Fi disconnects and latency on some distros of Linux after recent updates.

This issue likely affects Debian, Ubuntu, and Arch, and may also affect any other Debian-based distros such as Mint, Kali, etc.

As the ath10k Wi-Fi driver that is used by our Wi-Fi devices in these versions of Linux is a community-sourced driver, we have no direct impact on its stability, but since some users have indicated that they have found a fix for these issues, we wanted to share the fix with the rest of our users.

In summary, the fix is to install the updated firmware and firmware repo, following these steps:

  1. Download https://github.com/kvalo/ath10k-firmware/blob/master/QCA6174/hw3.0/board-2.bin and overwrite /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/board-2.bin with the downloaded file.
  2. Download https://github.com/kvalo/ath10k-firmware/blob/master/QCA6174/hw3.0/4.4.1/firmware-6.bin_WLAN.RM.4.4.1-00065-QCARMSWP-1and overwrite /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/firmware-6.bin.
  3. Restart

Following is a much more detailed, step-by-step guide on how to implement this fix:

  1. Open a Terminal window and navigate to the following location:
    cd /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/
  2. Backup your board-2.bin and firmware-6.bin files:
    sudo mv /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/board-2.bin /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/board-2.bin.bak
    sudo mv /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/firmware-6.bin /lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/firmware-6.bin.bak
  3. Download the two replacement versions and place them into the ‘/lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0/’ folder:
    Download: https://github.com/kvalo/ath10k-firmware/blob/master/QCA6174/hw3.0/board-2.bin
    Download: https://github.com/kvalo/ath10k-firmware/raw/master/QCA6174/hw3.0/4.4.1/firmware-6.bin_WLAN.RM.4.4.1-00065-QCARMSWP-1
  4. Rename your new ‘firmware-6…’ file to ‘firmware-6.bin’ with the following terminal command:
    sudo mv firmware-6.bin_WLAN.RM.4.4.1-00065-QCARMSWP-1 firmware-6.bin
  5. Enter ls -la into your terminal to verify the directory looks something like this:
    user@Ubuntu-XPS:/lib/firmware/ath10k/QCA6174/hw3.0$ ls -la
    total 3168
    drwxr-xr-x 2 root root 4096 Feb 6 15:29 .
    drwxr-xr-x 4 root root 4096 Jun 24 2016 ..
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 271412 Feb 6 15:30 board-2.bin
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 271412 Feb 6 15:28 board-2.bin.bak
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 337204 Nov 15 15:56 board-2.bin.wifi-qca6174
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 8124 May 12 2016 board.bin
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 8124 Dec 1 2016 board.bin.wifi-qca6174
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 733784 Dec 1 2016 firmware-4.bin
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 711408 Feb 6 15:30 firmware-6.bin
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 711408 Feb 6 15:28 firmware-6.bin.bak
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 79689 Dec 1 2016 notice_ath10k_firmware-4.txt
    -rw-r–r– 1 root root 82663 Nov 15 15:44 notice_ath10k_firmware-6.txt
  6. Restart your computer.

The 1535 1525 and 1435 use the community developed and supported ath10k driver. Killer Networking neither develops nor supports the ath10k driver. For further support, please refer either to the community support for your specific Linux distribution and version, or the driver itself.

Updated on February 19, 2019

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