SOLUTION: Dell Laptops Hang on Reboot/Shutdown after Windows 8.1 update

I’ve recently encountered a pretty new issue involving some Dell laptops where the system will simply hang at a black screen, completely blank, when a shutdown or restart is initiated.  This behavior occurs following the installation of the free Windows 8.1 update.  There is no evidence present in the Event Log or anywhere else to indicate what might be to blame, and nothing on the internet that I could find references the issue.

In my case, I encountered the problem while setting up around 10 Dell Latitude E7240 (Latitude 12 7000 Series) notebook computers for my clients.  The solution, as it turns out, is pretty simple.

As usual, it’s a driver which is to blame for the problem.  I first stumbled across the solution while troubleshooting when I decided to disable the wireless adapters (Wi-Fi and Bluetooth) using the hardware wireless switch on the side of the computer before shutting down.  You’ll notice that while Airplane Mode is on, the system reboots/shuts down just fine.

It’s because of the Dell Wireless 1601 WiFi/BT driver that’s preinstalled; for whatever reason, the Bluetooth portion of it is incompatible with Windows 8.1.  Explicitly disabling Bluetooth also fixes the problem, confirming that this is the source of the issue.

To correct it once and for all, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Download this driver from Dell.
  2. Choose to Extract Without Installing and specify a location of your choice.
  3. Wait a few seconds for the confirmation dialog to appear, then click View Folder.
  4. Double-click the Install_CD subfolder to open it.
  5. Run setup.exe and follow the instructions.
  6. Reboot the computer.

The problem is solved!

I presume this most likely affects all Dell computers running the A01 version of the driver.  I hope this solution has helped you!

Donate to say "Thanks" if this post has helped save you time and money! 🙂

9 thoughts on “SOLUTION: Dell Laptops Hang on Reboot/Shutdown after Windows 8.1 update

  1. I did exactly as you said twice.
    It craps out in the middle and does a restart.
    The hanging on shutdown/restart persists.
    Only way I was able to cure it was to roll back to 8.0

  2. Hey cushlomockree,

    Is the problem resolved if the physical wireless switch on the machine is in the off position?

    What wireless card is installed in the unit?

  3. Had the same issue with alienware m17xr4 and killer 1202 wireless, computer wouldn’t hang at reboot in flight mode. To fix my pc I had to uninstall wireless network driver, use the killer driver cleaner, reboot and reinstall the same driver (was the latest one available already). Thanks for the tip off!

  4. I have a Dell Latitude 5530 and it had the problem of hanging already with windows 8 pro. I had tried to update without success 3 times in the hope this erro would be corrected. On my fourth try I succeeded to update to windows 8.1 pro just to find that the problem of hanging persist.
    Im now trying your advice. Its strange that Dell is not avare.

    Thanks for posting your advice.

  5. I don’t know what happened to my dell laptop i3 processor Windows 8.1 4GB RAM 500GB hard disk
    Suddenly while switching it on a black screen came with some instructions like
    F1 reboot
    F2 setup
    F3 PSA

    But m not able to fix and I don’t know how to fix it ……it is showing that hard disk is not installed…. M so worried…

    Plzzzz help me out

  6. Hi Neeraj,

    Unless the hard drive somehow came loose from its connection, it seems it has failed. Without professional data recovery the data will be lost. You can however probably get the machine running again with a new drive and a fresh installation of your Windows version.

    Hope this helps.


  7. Hey there 2 Global Nomads,

    I’m sure you guys have lots of great info on your site, and I’m certain you are experts in your field. However I wanted to reply here to say that I completely disagree with your post; it is my contention that your advice in most ways actually renders a machine *more* vulnerable, as updates — however popularly maligned and occasionally flawed — are the cornerstone of security. In fact, by running stock Windows 7 without updates, you are already committed to a foundation of software authored by Microsoft. Do you somehow believe that their software from 2009 was inherently more secure than their — ahem — SECURITY patches in subsequent years? I’m sorry, but the logic simply does not follow.

    As a computer security expert myself (at least in the realm of workstation security), I advise all of my clients to ALWAYS install the latest security patches, ESPECIALLY for Windows and other foundational popular software. Very few of my clients have any issues with security at all…


  8. Hello , I don’t know weather my issue is same or not but with the same update my pc hangs up as I shutdown and again I on my laptop . It’s hp laptop with windows 8.1 I am still not pretty sure is it the driver problem or my hardware problem bcoz I already roll back using recovery but I think this update is still there . I am really frustrated with this problem please visit help me guys . Please help guys

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