Windows 8 and Intel Gigabit incompatibility?

Hey all, first time poster, long time reader of this site with some questions regarding my newly built PC. Here are the specs:
MSI Z77A-GD55 mobo with Intel 82579V Gigabit Network Controller onboard.
i5-2500k 3.3 GHz
GeForce GTX 650 TI
Internet is provided through the university I attend (note: I've never had this issue in 4+ years of using school internet, so I'm ruling that out for now)

I built my machine a week ago and installed Windows 7 Ultimate (32 bit) that I had previously owned. All of the drivers installed fine from the provided CDs. I didn't realize my OS was 32 bit until I went to check my System menu in Windows and saw it was only using 4 GB out of my 16GB installed RAM. I bought Windows 8 Pro and performed a clean install of the 64-bit version, and thought everything was peachy because it was utilizing all of my RAM, etc.

After a few days, I noticed that while gaming online, the connection would hang and I would be disconnected. I alt-tabbed to see if my internet was still working, and that web pages were loading, and they were. I could immediately reconnect to the game after that. This connection hanging always occurs within 1-3 minutes of starting a game. I've tested this in Heroes of Newerth and CS:GO, to rule out that it's not just a specific game.

Windows 8 wouldn't allow me to install the Intel Network drivers from the provided MSI CD; Windows gave me a Runtime Error. I downloaded the drivers from Intel's website and they installed properly. However, I'm still having these issues.

Another interesting issue is that very occasionally, when I turn on my computer, it won't recognize that I have an Ethernet connection. Restarting my computer remedies that problem.

Is Windows 8 causing this issue?
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