Numerous Mac users have experienced an issue where their Airport WiFi icon displays “WiFi: No Hardware Installed” after installing the OS X Lion 10.7.3 or 10.7.4 update. This is extremely frustrating because as Mac users, we pay a premium for the “luxury” of owning a computer where Apple tightly controls the hardware / software environment in order to provide a computer operating experience of the utmost stability. Little blog to Apple; “you didn’t exactly get this one right!” Fortunately, there is a way to fix this issue.
First of all, a big thanks goes out to delifruit from InsanelyMac.com for providing the fix for the “WiFi: No Hardware Installed” error message in OS X Lion. Additionally, we would also like to thank MACMANUS.NL for posting an article that details the steps that are necessary to resolve this problem.
WiFi: No Hardware Installed Fix For OS X Lion
Background: Numerous Mac users who are running OS X Lion have experienced an issue where their Airport WiFi adapter no longer works after installing either OS X 10.7.3 or OS X 10.7.4. In my case, the Airport WiFi adapter in my 13 inch, early 2008 black MacBook had failed back in 2010. I had performed all sorts of trouble shooting techniques for fixing MacBook wireless problems, and had ultimately determined that the wireless issues that I was experiencing with my MacBook were as a result of hardware failure. I ended up purchasing a used replacement AirPort adapter for my MacBook that worked very well until I upgraded to OS X Lion 10.7.4. Shame on me for trying to save some money by operating outside of Apple’s “ecosystem.” BUT, there are still many users who’ve purchased their Mac directly from Apple only to have their Airport stop working after installing OS X 10.7.3 or OS X 10.7.4. Here are the steps that worked for me to resolve this problem;
1. Click here to visit MACMANUS.NL and download a modified kernel extension (Kext) that will ultimately make your Apple WiFi work after again if it broke after you upgraded to OS X 10.7.3 or OS X 10.7.4. You’ll see a link to a file called edited-atheros-kext-for-lion3-zip.doc. You can download this file to your (WiFi disabled) Mac by either hardwiring to your router, or via USB memory stick.
2. Download Kext Utility here. Again, you’ll need to be wired in if your Mac’s wireless is not working, or download the file from another computer to a USB memory stick.
3. After you’ve downloaded Kext Utility, you must click on Kext_Utility.app.v2.5.1.zip to extract the contents of the zip file to your Mac. Copy Kext Utility to your Applications folder.
4. Rename the file “edited-atheros-kext-for-lion3-zip.doc” to “edited-atheros-kext-for-lion3.zip.”
5. Double click edited-atheros-kext-for-lion3.zip to extract the contents of the zip file to your Mac.
6. Run Kext Utility from you Applications directory and drag and drop the IO80211Family.kext folder which is contained within the “edited Atheros kext for Lion*3” folder (generated by step 5) onto the Kext Utility app.
7. Wait patiently for Kext Utility to “do it’s thing” and enter your OS X username and password when prompted.
8. Reboot your Mac, your WiFi connection should now be fixed.
Again, this is what worked to fix the “WiFi: no hardware installed” error message on my personal MacBook after I had upgraded to OS X Lion 10.7.3. Your mileage may vary, please be sure to share your experiences with other users.