Windows 11 KB5033375 December 2023 update disrupts Wi-Fi connectivity in college campuses

The Windows 11 KB5033375 update, released in December 2023, intended to address security issues, has caused problems for some users, according to reports investigated by Windows Latest. The update appears to be affecting Wi-Fi connections, particularly for individuals working with multiple wireless access points, such as those within universities.

One user reported a significant decrease in Wi-Fi quality following the installation of the update, resulting in inconsistent ping requests and connection issues. Moreover, the problem seems to have originated with an earlier optional update and carried over to the current mandatory update, KB5033375. It’s worth noting that the issue is associated with two December updates – the mandatory security update, KB5033375, and the optional update, KB5032288.

There’s a belief that the problem is specifically related to Qualcomm’s older wireless adapters, commonly found in public universities.

Universities have acknowledged the issue, with some recommending the uninstallation of the Windows 11 update in order to restore normal Wi-Fi access for students. One reader working as a system administrator at a university has suggested a potential compatibility issue between the Qualcomm QCA61x4a wireless adapter and the recent Windows update. However, the problem also appears to be connected to PEAP settings in Windows triggered by recent updates.

Reports from various universities and educational institutions highlight the widespread nature of the Wi-Fi issue caused by the KB5033375 update. If the problem persists, users may opt to switch to EAP-TLS from PEAP or disable 802.11r on the affected SSID as a potential workaround.

Microsoft has yet to officially acknowledge or address the reported Wi-Fi issues. Despite these problems, the December 2023 update offers notable improvements, such as enhanced Copilot features, and improved user experiences. However, the Wi-Fi issue remains a significant concern for affected users.

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