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Guide: Turn your Killer E2200 NIC into Qualcomm Atheros AR8161

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#1
Here is a small guide on how to get Windows to see your Killer E2200 NIC as a Qualcomm Atheros AR8161 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller....

the Killer E2200 NIC is actually more or less a Qualcomm Atheros AR8161 chip.

1. Download the Driver for the Qualcomm Atheros AR8161 on qca.qualcomm.com.

in the Download Sector this driver is called "WIN_AR816X_Windows WHQL Driver V2.1.0.21" under AR816X QCA817X Family Drivers.

DDL: AR813x_AR815x_AR816x_v2.1.0.21_WHQL.zip

Source Link: http://www.qca.qualcomm.com/resources/driverdownloads/

2. after downloading the zip file, unpack it somewhere.

3. Go into Device Manager. (Right click on Computer-->Properties then on the left side under "Control Panel Home" you see "Device Manager"



4. When "Device Manager" opens locale and expand "Network Adapters", you do that by clicking on the arrow head or double click on it.



5. When "Network Adapters" is expanded you show see your Killer E2200 NIC



6. Right click on the "Killer E2200 NIC" and choose "Update Driver Software..."



7. These Next steps are important so follow them carefully....

Choose "Browse my computer for driver software"



8. Now choose "Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer



if you just do it as you normally with with "Search for a driver software in this location:" you will get that "Windows was unable to install the driver" (And no this isn't because i already have the driver installed it's because Windows see's the card as a Killer E2200 NIC):



9. Click on the "Have Disk..." button:



and then hit the "Browse" button, and go into where you have unpacked the driver, then find the folder called "Common_Dri" as u can see in the picture below...



Choose the folder that matches your OS like for Windows 7 32bit u take "Win7_32", for Windows 7 64bit u take "Win7_64", for Windows 8/8.1 32bit u take "Win8_32", for Windows 8/8.1 64bit u take "Win8_64".

11. When u find the correct inf file, you either double click on it or mark it and hit "Open":



Then you click "OK" here.



12. Then you get this window with a selection of drivers since this is a multi driver you get more then one, but scroll down in the window until you find "Qualcomm Atheros AR8161 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller (NDIS 6.30)" mark it and hit "Next":



13. Then you will get this "Update Driver Warning" that the driver ain't verified to the hardware bla bla bla, and it can be unstable or stop working completely which it won't because it works fine...



14. Then let Windows install the driver and you will get the message "Windows has successfully updated your driver software":



hit "Close" and you will see your "Killer E2200 NIC" is now called "Qualcomm Atheros AR8161 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller (NDIS 6.30) as shown below:



I am using this driver with my MSI Z87I Gaming AC motherboard and it works like a clam, i never had any issues with my Windows 8.1 Professional 64bit.



I decided to add the links for the Killer™ Cleaner since Qualcomm's side appearently don't exist anymore.

Link:

KillerCleaner_32bit.exe: http://www100.zippyshare.com/v/HTTVTlh5/file.html
KillerCleaner_64bit.exe: http://www40.zippyshare.com/v/9BWUx3gl/file.html
 
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#2
What benefits/advantages have you seen from this?
 
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#3
What benefits/advantages have you seen from this?
This.

I have the same MSI board and Win 8.1 pro recognizes my network adapter without problems.
 
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#4
What benefits/advantages have you seen from this?
the Killer E2200 NIC is build to let gaming come first, the Qualcomm Athero AR8161 is a regular NIC.
 
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#5
There is a major thread over on MSI's support forums in regards to their laptops and motherboards that incorporate the Killer NIC and Killer WLAN. Not always but enough it got a response from MSI that the Killer NIC software suite and often just the generic driver itself will result in system instability with both Windows 8 (Most often) and Windows 7(on occasion).

There are numerous threads and within the past 2 months a few stickies have been added to their forums for this.

I found with my own motherboard, Gigabyte M5.Sniper, the Killer NIC suite and the generic driver resulted in system instability on both Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Doing the above fix about 3-4 months ago has fixed my issues with the network card being flaky. I have updated my BIOS a few times since but always left the network as the Atheros AR8161.

It is really hit or miss but if you are having stability issues or blue screens pointing to your network card(s) or network connectivity issues, it wouldn't hurt to try this.

No performance gains or losses noticed, just an overall stable system.
 
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#6
There is a major thread over on MSI's support forums in regards to their laptops and motherboards that incorporate the Killer NIC and Killer WLAN. Not always but enough it got a response from MSI that the Killer NIC software suite and often just the generic driver itself will result in system instability with both Windows 8 (Most often) and Windows 7(on occasion).

There are numerous threads and within the past 2 months a few stickies have been added to their forums for this.

I found with my own motherboard, Gigabyte M5.Sniper, the Killer NIC suite and the generic driver resulted in system instability on both Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Doing the above fix about 3-4 months ago has fixed my issues with the network card being flaky. I have updated my BIOS a few times since but always left the network as the Atheros AR8161.

It is really hit or miss but if you are having stability issues or blue screens pointing to your network card(s) or network connectivity issues, it wouldn't hurt to try this.

No performance gains or losses noticed, just an overall stable system.
So we can assume that Killer e2200 is a f*ck, and has no benefits against intel NIC in Gaming MOBO`s like Asus Rog Hero.
 
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#7
All the "Killer" series is just a pocketbook killer and offers no real world performance beyond epeen and marketing.
 
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#8
There is a major thread over on MSI's support forums in regards to their laptops and motherboards that incorporate the Killer NIC and Killer WLAN. Not always but enough it got a response from MSI that the Killer NIC software suite and often just the generic driver itself will result in system instability with both Windows 8 (Most often) and Windows 7(on occasion).

There are numerous threads and within the past 2 months a few stickies have been added to their forums for this.

I found with my own motherboard, Gigabyte M5.Sniper, the Killer NIC suite and the generic driver resulted in system instability on both Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Doing the above fix about 3-4 months ago has fixed my issues with the network card being flaky. I have updated my BIOS a few times since but always left the network as the Atheros AR8161.

It is really hit or miss but if you are having stability issues or blue screens pointing to your network card(s) or network connectivity issues, it wouldn't hurt to try this.

No performance gains or losses noticed, just an overall stable system.
So the "Killer" is actually referring to the system and not the NIC. Interesting.
 
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#9
i wonder if a system have qualcom atheros Ar8161 can turn that nic into killer e2200 nic via software. might wanna try
 
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#10
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#11
People have short memories? We already know that when it comes to wireless performance the improvements killer brings are notable. http://www.anandtech.com/show/4590/bigfoots-killern-1102-wireless-networking-vs-the-world
Turning it into an AR8161 won't just effect gaming it will drop performance across the board. I'd only do it if you had a serious compatibility issue.
Because a regular wireless adapter is SOOO bad at gaming performance. Nice two year old article.
 

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#12
I feel bad for anyone who needs this guide.
 
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#13
I feel bad for anyone who needs this guide.
I sort of agree. The only information that should have been needed is that a Killer E2200 uses an Athero AR8161 chip. Still nice of the OP to help out those that haven't spent as much time learning the nuances of driver installations. Impossible that some people may have better things to do than that.
 

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#14
Atheros nics whether for wan or wifi ive noticed would dump the driver or just plain stop working in several laptops. I cant recommendvthem to anyone.
 
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#15
Atheros nics whether for wan or wifi ive noticed would dump the driver or just plain stop working in several laptops. I cant recommendvthem to anyone.
Knock on wood, my desktop atheros had been chugging along for over a year now.
 

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#16
I sort of agree. The only information that should have been needed is that a Killer E2200 uses an Athero AR8161 chip. Still nice of the OP to help out those that haven't spent as much time learning the nuances of driver installations. Impossible that some people may have better things to do than that.
no, i mean i feel bad for people who have paid for a killer nic.
 
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#17
no, i mean i feel bad for people who have paid for a killer nic.
haha, i paid for my ITX board bcs i wanted my system to take up less space even i am normally a Asus guy i really like the MSI Z87I Gaming ITX board and it got one more sata port then the impact and got way cooler vrm dragon headsinks plus it's cheaper ^^
 
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#18
People have short memories? We already know that when it comes to wireless performance the improvements killer brings are notable. http://www.anandtech.com/show/4590/bigfoots-killern-1102-wireless-networking-vs-the-world
Turning it into an AR8161 won't just effect gaming it will drop performance across the board. I'd only do it if you had a serious compatibility issue.
That article is full of contradictions, and different drivers and other things happening on a network may have much larger effect than what the article shows. Networks are not static things other than the weakest link in the chain.

"Something else you don’t immediately get from the charts is the ease of setup: for Ethernet, you plug in the cable and you get your 100Mb or 1000Mb connection; there’s no fussing about or worries of Interference. Longer cables can increase latency slightly, and if you bounce through several switches you can end up with 3-5ms of latency, but throughput is still much faster than any 802.11n network."




So .7ms is a realistic figure when 3-5ms is quoted as being faster later in the article?

No one, and I mean no one, will notice a few ms of jitter on a network, or due to a driver. The improvements seen in the transfers shown here are due to improvements from Atheros in multiple file/stream handling and hardware support, which nets you a few seconds faster transfer over wireless for small odd files and in other rarely used scenarios.

It should also be noted that they (Killer) supplied the hardware used for the test, and as such the performance characteristics such as QOS, and MTU may have been tampered with to improve their numbers.

While I do not doubt that in certain small use situations the hardware support makes it better, I am not willing to buy in that the performance almost any user gets is worth the premium paid, especially when the "secret sauce" causes issues with the OS.
 
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#19
Anyway lowering Latency by NIC causes Cpu load
 

HammerON

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#20
Thread cleansed of nonsense. Keep on the topic at hand please.
 
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#21
Created account to say it worked great. Using Win 8.1. Guide worked perfectly. Was getting very sick of dealing with this NIC.
 
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#22
It doesn't make sense to do that after paying more for killer LAN w/ its traffic control utility.

Intel has its own advantage on download speed. when it comes to gaming, stream & multi-task in gaming, it seems killer LAN is more stable especially for MMO.

in the end, choosing either intel or killer LAN always depends on your demand. There is a video showing their comparison. you must note the editor use an add-on card instead of onboard intel LAN. I assume the add-on card is better..

 
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#23
Often times using the actual chipset rather then the OEM's drivers results in increased stability and less bloat.
 
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#25
Created an account to say thanks for the suggestion to use Qualcomm Athero AR8161 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller drivers on the Killer E2200.

I just got a new MSI GT70 laptop yesterday which has the Killer E2200. First thing I did was to upgrade to Windows to 8.1 Professional. Then I began downloading games through Steam/Origin.

As I downloaded my RAM would soon reach 8GB out of 8GB in use... and the laptop would come to a near complete standstill. My cursor would skip around the screen, but could not get anything to function.

I soon found out the Killer E2200 is notorious memory leaker. Uninstalled, reinstalled, upgraded the drivers... No luck. Still leaking my memory every time I do to download.

So far using the Qualcomm Athero AR8161 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller driver has resolved my issue.