I have run into some different problems with a different Qualcomm Atheros wireless chip. I get the feeling that Qualcomm Atheros doesn’t do too great of a job with its firmware.
My Qualcomm Atheros QCA9377 in my Dell Inspiron (i5) kind of stalls the connection after a random, though usually long, period of time. The WiFi network is formally connected to, but no packets pass through, requiring me to disconnect from and reconnect to my network; that’s with the latest firmware. With a the API level 5 firmware (just move the level 6 firmware outside of its directory and it will load the older one on the next reboot or next removal and reinsertion of the
ath10k_pci module), manually pinging some IP address, like say
ping 126.96.36.199, actually manages to brute-force the connection back into functioning, but it’s not a much better experience than just disconnecting and reconnecting, so…
No, manipulating the power management settings does not do a thing. No, changing the kernel does not do a thing. Yes, the Dell PDF states that the Inspiron should have Intel WiFi, but this is a unit which was bought from a Bosnian retailer, so…
Realtek isn’t all rainbows and sunshine either, but:
The chip in my mother’s laptop that’s from 2014 worked without a flaw on Linux, at least on a LiveUSB, since the first time that I’ve tried using it with a LiveUSB, which is admittedly three years later, but this QCA chip didn’t exactly come out in March, so there was definitely enough time to get the support ironed out in the firmware.
The chip in my previous laptop didn’t really work at first, but I found a workaround online pretty quickly. It meant sacrificing Bluetooth performance for WiFi performance, but such is life. The chip was properly supported by kernel version 4.16 at least (I discovered UKUU at around when 4.17 came out and saw reports on Manjaro forums that 4.16 was the magic version, so take that as you will). Compared to how long it took for me to discover that I needed to set
iommu=soft to get the HP Pavilion booting, not to mention never having proper resume support due to the IOMMU, the workaround was a decent experience.
I haven’t had experience with your particular chip, so I can’t say anything conclusive about it, but if it’s anything like mine, well, I’ve already said what there was to say about that. Here’s hoping that a kernel update is the final piece of the puzzle you need to complete your laptop.
Have a nice day!
Edit: I didn’t realize that this tread was almost a month old. Sorry!