Sometimes, after Windows 10 updates or upgrading the system from Windows 7 to Windows 10, the Ethernet adapter or the wireless adapter is missing from the device manager, and its connection icon disappears from the taskbar. Sometimes, after your computer reboot from the sleep mode, the same problem will happen. These conditions cause the Ethernet adapter or the WIFI adapter does not work.
Before you do all the things, maybe you need to check it from the device manager and make sure it is not hidden. Entering the device manager, and choose Show hidden devices from View menu.
After all the devices are unhidden, you can see if the network adapters showing or not. So how to fix the network adapter disappeared in device manager? There are several solutions you can try.
Solution 1: Check for Windows Updates
If you find the network adapter is wholly missing from device manager, update the Windows 10 version maybe helps. The Windows fresh updates include the security updates, Windows defender definition updates and driver updates. For the driver updates, it will automatically scan all the devices and install drivers for it. And here is the solution you need: how to check for updates for Windows 10.
Solution 2: Troubleshooting Network Issue
Using troubleshooting way to check network device error status and solve its error will be an easy way, because of all the things will be done automatically.
1. Typing troubleshoot in the search box and enter the troubleshooting window.
2. In Troubleshoot tab, find the Network Adapter option by drop-down the vertical scrollbar.
3. Click Run the troubleshooter to identify the network adapter problem.
4. After that, troubleshooting will diagnostics the network adapter missing problem and help to fix it automatically.
After using troubleshooting to fix the problem, the network adapter will appear in device manager again.
Solution 3: Network Adapter Power Settings
The power settings It may cause this problem. And there is another condition if your Ethernet adapter or wireless adapter shows intermittently such as sometimes it shows normal, but it was disappeared later and shows again. So try the next steps.
If you use the laptop, try to fully charge the battery and do the hard reboot for your computer to see if the network adapter is showing up in device manager. If not, hard reboot again until the network adapter (Ethernet adapter or WIFI adapter) showing.
Then right click the network adapter, choose Properties > Power Management.
In Power Management tab, uncheck the option: Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power.
So uncheck this option will make computer to run Ethernet devices and WIFI devices without considering the computer power save problem.
Solution 4: Update Network Adapter Drivers
Because of the disappearing network adapter, so if you know the Ethernet adapter name or wireless adapter name, you can try to download the driver package from the official site. After download it, you can install it manually to update it. Then reboot the computer to see if the problem solved or not.
If you do not know the wireless device type or Ethernet device type, you can use Driver Doctor to help you find, download and update the network driver to fix the network adapter missing issue.
Solution 5: Use External USB WIFI Adapter
Well, use an external USB wireless adapter will be a simple and brutal way. Although it requires another USB WIFI adapter or you need to buy one if you do not have one, but it is an effective solution. You can connect USB wireless receiver to the computer USB port to see if the wireless adapter shows in device manager or not.
So there are 5 ways you can do to solve the network adapter missing in device manager problem. Wish all ways can help you.