Can't Connect To The Internet

| November 19, 2009

If you can’t connect to the Internet, there can be several reasons. Techniques for discovering the source of this problem can be broken down into a few distinct parts: Internet was working but now it is not, Internet never worked, removed viruses and now I can’t connect to the Internet, and finally, I reinstalled Windows and now I can’t connect to the Internet. Just because you cannot reach the Internet doesn’t necessarily mean there is a problem with your PC. There are other networking devices that can fail or simply lose their settings.

Can't Connect To The InternetThe Internet Was Working But Now It Isn’t

This is probably the most frequent scenario. One day you are surfing the web without a care in the world and the next day you cannot connect to the Internet. If you try different web pages and cannot connect to any of them, you likely probably just need to shut down the computer, unplug the router, then unplug the modem. Let everything sit for a few minutes, them slowly plug them back in reverse order, giving the modem and router a chance to cycle-up before powering on the PC. This is called Power-Cycling and will often fix whatever networking issues you are having.

Internet Never Worked

If you are setting the network up for the first time, you need to make sure your cable modem and router both have green lights with flashing activity. If you have a router, try plugging your PC directly into the modem with an Ethernet cable. By doing this, you eliminate router configuration as a possibility. If you can connect at this point, plug back into the router and make sure of the following: Make sure the router is getting an IP address from the ISP. Make sure you have Clone your PC’s Mac address checked and make sure the router is acting as a DHCP server so it can issue your computer a proper internal IP address.

Removed a Virus And Can No Longer Connect To The Internet

Frequently, you will remove a virus and and then realize you can’t connect to the Internet. This happens because viruses will attach themselves to vital computer system files that, when removed, break your network. You can try programs like WinSockXP Fix to repair it, but chances are you will need to do a repair install using a Windows Install Disk. When you boot to the disk, you will eventually get the option to perform a repair.  With the disk in the drive, go to a command line and type sfc /scannow. This will scan your system files and replace them with good ones from the install disk. If all this fails, you might be forced to do a system recovery or clean install of the Operating System.

Reinstalled Windows And Now Can’t Connect To The Internet

This usually means you do not have a driver installed for your networking adapter. If you perform a system recovery from a major brand name from dell, HP or Acer, you will probably not experience this. But if you use an upgrade disk and do a clean install of the latest version of Windows, you will then need to obtain the necessary drivers for your particular model. You will need to do this from another computer if you didn’t get the drivers in advance. Manufacturers of your PC, motherboard or network adapter will have drivers available for download.

If you still can’t connect to the Internet, be sure to join our free computer repair forum of read our other Internet tutorials.

Category: Internet

Dave

About the Author ()

Dave has been providing free computer repair and tech support advice online since 2002. Join us on our forums and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for weekly tips and other helpful computer articles. Connect with me on: Google+

Comments (11)

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  1. Stephen Williams says:

    Hi… I changed harddrives on a old system an Elonex since doing this it fails to recognise the Ethernet Controller, Multimedia Audio Controller and VGA Controller. I have tried to uninstall each one but to no avail. Can you help me in this matter as the computer belongs to my In-laws…Just my luck.

    Steve

    • Dave Dave says:

      Seems like a driver issue. If you go into the Device Manager you probably see a lot of unknown devices. You will need to figure out what these are and go to the manufacturer’s website and get the drivers. Sounds like a custom built PC, so it will be tricky figuring out what is what.

  2. Stephen Williams says:

    Its a all in one computer system the actual motherboard is behind the screen…tried putting the drivers on manually but hard to find out the right driver to install.

    Thxs for helping

  3. PC Repair says:

    Computers not connecting to the internet is one of the most common complaints we get from users who bring their PCs for repairs. Although most can easily be resolved by scanning and running antivirus to remove any virus.

    That said, I have found WinSockXP Fix to be very helpful in getting the system running again.

    Nice post BTW :)

  4. Shane Mangold says:

    My PC was infected with some kind of trojan spyware combination called antivirus live and so far the only solutions i can find to solve the problem require the internet. But i cant connect to the real internet, just another page suggesting i buy this garbage.

    • Dave Dave says:

      Reboot, tap F8 immediately until you get the boot menu. Click Safe mode WITH NETWORKING and go to the malwarebytes.org website and download their free malware removal program. Update and run a full scan. Remove anything it finds. Once you get back into Windows, get any new Microsoft Updates.

  5. My wireless net work is not working.
    I cannot add any new program to my lap top.

  6. James says:

    My PC laptop isn’t allowing me to access the internet. But when I connect to my wireless network, the computer shows that I’m connected (status & signal in the bottom righht hand corner) but the internet won’t come up. The same thing happens when I connect the laptop to the router, it still does not allow the internet to pull up. What should I do?

    • Open Internet Explorer, then go to Tools, Internet Options, Connections. Make sure there is no proxy server set. If so, uncheck it. Also, try right-clicking the icon and select Repair (for WIndows XP).

  7. tina says:

    can someone help me to get connection on the net i have tried but it wont and we have try so can some one help thank u

  8. Shawn Struble says:

    I moved my home pc from my home to my business. I connected the ethernet cable into the modem and into the back of my pc. I tried to get on the net, but nothing happened. I went to the network page and read that the bytes were sending and receiving. I called my ISP and they did a ping, and everything was fine on their end, they were able to get on my net from their end. I don’t think its the modem, or the ethernet cable, but something with my computer.