The Dell Latitude E7270 & E7250 laptops my company uses have various wifi-related issues under 32-bit Windows 7. They won't connect to certain wifi hotspots (especially iPhone personal hotspot), auto switching sometimes won't work, etc. I've found on the web that others often experience issues with getting iPhone personal hotspot to work with laptops running Windows 7. Unfortunately, none of the solutions I found on the web worked for me. After lots of painful trial and error, I found success with the solution below.
1) Install the very latest BIOS update from your laptop maker's support website (e.g. http://www.dell.com/support/).
2) Install the very latest full wifi driver (hopefully the one with the full Intel wifi app) from your laptop maker's support website (e.g. http://www.dell.com/support/).
3) Do NOT use the integrated Windows wifi to manage wifi connections. Instead, use Intel's wifi tool in the system tray--it's a white/green wifi-style icon. Use the "profiles" feature to set wifi hotspot priority order.
In some cases, I've still had issues--esp. with iPhone personal hotspot (aka tethering).
On the iPhone:
1) Turn OFF personal hotspot.
2) Go to Settings, General, About.
3) Change the iPhone name to something very simple without spaces or non-letter characters. For example, use bobiphone instead of Bob's iPhone.
4) Turn ON personal hotspot.
On the Laptop:
- Open the Intel wifi app (green/white icon in the system tray).
- Click Profiles and delete any old connection profiles to the troublesome wifi device (e.g. iPhone).
- Add a new profile and move it to the top of the list using the arrows.
Here are the settings for an iPhone Personal Hotspot connection:
- The profile name and SSID should match what appears on the iPhone's personal hotspot screen. The SSID should now be a simple name without non-letter characters or spaces.
- Operating mode is Network (Infrastructure).
- Check the "connect even if the network is not broadcasting its name" box. NEXT.
- Choose personal security and WPA2 - Personal (AES-CCMP).
- Enter the wifi password as shown on the iphone.
- It will take a while, but eventually connect. It will probably say "no internet access."
- Click the DETAILS button next to the wifi connection info.
- Click REPAIR.
After the repair completes, I've found that the connection works. Hopefully, a popup will appear asking to choose the network type. Choose "public." This is a very good sign the connection will finally work.