Can’t Connect to the Internet? Find Out Why

With improvements in technology, we’ve come to depend on the internet to complete daily tasks such as bill paying, obtaining news and not to mention performing at work. If your PC can’t connect to the internet. It can feel like the end of the world for some. However, for most casual PC users, its an irritation. Most people have found themselves puzzled over a sudden interruption in connectivity. This article hopes to give you a few reasons why you cant connect to the internet and quick solutions to get you back online.

It’s important to establish why you can’t connect to the internet. Checking to see if your computer or device has an internet connection is your first step. This can be done by looking at the connection icon located in your Windows task bar. With a wireless connection, this is usually indicated by a series of bars. If you are using a data line or phone line, you will see a computer screen with the phone cord icon. Both these are located in the task bar. If there is no connection, check your network settings.

Here is how to open your Network Settings in Windows

  1. To check the network settings, simply right click the icon.
  2. Click Open Network Settings and Sharing Center.

If you see that an X symbol between your network and the internet, it’s safe to say that you aren’t connected to the internet. Using Windows’ troubleshooting application can provide possible reasons why there isn’t access to the internet. The application will provide you with vital information on what steps need to be taken to get back online. Here are the common reasons why you can’t connect to the internet and quick solutions:

ISP Problems

The lack of connectivity may not be your PC’s fault. The problem may lie with your internet service provider (ISP). You should call your ISP’s customer service to find out why the service is down.

Hardware Problems

This is easily one of the most common reasons for no internet access. If you are using a modem or router, make sure they are plugged in correctly. Double check the data line. Is it firmly secured into the all entry points? If your internet displays a warning that indicates there is no dial tone or cable service on the line, check for warning lights on hardware or modem. Switching the modem or device off briefly could remedy the problem. Also, check other devices that are connected to the internet. If those devices, such as your TV or a video game console still have internet service, the problem can be limited to the device in question.

Software Problems.

Sometimes your computer can’t connect to the internet due to software problems. This usually occurs due to your software device drivers. Software drivers are like an intermediary that provides a way for Windows to properly communicate with your hardware. Check to see that there is a problem with your modem’s driver. To check your drivers, you will need to open up your device manager.

  1. Click Start and then choose Control Panel.
  2. Choose System and Maintenance, then click Device Manager.


Simply type Device Manager in your Windows Search Bar

Once you are in the device manager, check your modem’s driver. If there is an warning sign, you may need to update the driver. You can do this by right clicking the driver and choosing to update the driver software. If you need specific help for updating drivers, check out the link below.

Sometimes you try to load your homepage using a browser and it doesn’t load. This may not be a problem on your end. Make sure you check other pages to see if that particular websites server is down.

All in all, your problem is not the end of world. Hopefully, with a few steps you will be back online without too much hassle.

By Gaelim Holland

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38 thoughts on “Can’t Connect to the Internet? Find Out Why

  1. “Check your cable”
    This seems to be a universal answer when i call Support with internet problems. Funny thing is, most of the time that’s actually the problem, i guess they’re not asking it so often for nothing, lol.
    Joshua’s recent post ..Plumbing Design TrainingMy Profile

  2. “Have a look on your temp, %tmep% files.”

    Sometime the network may be hanged by Temporary file. You have to remove the temp file to resolve the issue. You can delete these file also to get a high speed.

    One other thing, you can also run disk cleanup for resolving slow network connection problems.

  3. Sometimes laptops connected wirelessly will switch over to an open access point if the signal for the main access point gets too weak. This kills the net connection if you’ve got DHCP disabled like I do on my systems. Making sure Windows is set to only connect to approved access points solves this.
    Mandeep’s recent post ..DIY Homemade HDTV AntennaMy Profile

  4. That’s a nice article, I’m sure that every day Internet users will find it useful. Of course, the problems is more complicated when a router or a switch is involved – these could be interesting post subjects.

  5. Thanks man! I only knew Software Problems. sometimes it does feel like the end of world :) especially when you all of your friends on the net and you can’t ask them… I think I’ll be fine with your help!
    katie’s recent post ..שליחת SMSMy Profile

  6. I always encounter problem with my modem and router connected (wireless) for each of my laptops. Both reflects Excellent and strencght in connections, however when i click on internet explorer I cant get it on. Any ideas why?
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  7. There some instance that the connection will work but spiky. I just do the simple things, dial the phone to the internet technician. This post is very informative and helps a lot.
    Vernon’s recent post ..Dekaron ReviewMy Profile

  8. Hi, Gaelim,
    thanks for the extra tips!It is very annoying when my internet breaks down, and lately I actually have to call the customer support since everything else I try doesn’t seem to be helpful enough. I am thinking in switching to another provider, but that would be time consuming and I need to have net every day…so I am stuck with this issue for now.
    I will try out your tips, I appreciate it.
    Kristina L.’s recent post ..eBooks Coupon CodeMy Profile

  9. >>>It can feel like the end of the world for some

    I can honestly say that I completely relate to this!

    I’ve worked long enough as the standard go-to “tech guy” in the office to know that most people NEED TO LEARN these tips, and in fact in many cases need to simply try turning the power on and off for 30 seconds and reconnecting everything + reboot!

  10. Hey Gaelim, thanks for this basic troubleshooting steps. I’ve bookmarked this page coz this can come in handy whenever my ISP won’t be able to explain why my internet connection is interrupted.
    Millie Marwick’s recent post angry birds plushMy Profile

  11. Definitely feels like the end of the world when you can’t connect. When I last moved, Verizon gave me issues with moving my service over, I was without internet for 2 months. Almost went crazy. I constantly spent my time in the library for internet because everything I do needs internet.

    The comment about the mom unplugging the connection reminds me of dial-up. Lost connection every time someone had to make a call.
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  12. Hi Gaelim,

    Thank you for this article. In my home I have connection problems frequently when I use my normal PC that has a wired connection to my router.

    At the same time my kids, who use a wireless connected laptop, have no connection problems. I looks like that my router handles wireless traffic with priority….

    Resetting my router (power off and power on) gives a solution for a few hours.
    Have you heard of this before, and is there anything I can do?

    Thank you
    Albert H.’s recent post ..How to Protect Kids from Hearing ProblemsMy Profile

      • I use a low end Win7 PC. I was suspecting my PC too, but the strange thing is that powering off/on my router restores the internet connection. Sometimes it works for hours, sometimes for days. Now I am suspecting my router (Linksys 3-4 years old).

        When there are several wireless connections (laptop, Wii, Blackberry using Wifi) there are more problems with my wired PC.

        Very strange for me too. I hope that somebody on this website had the same experience (and a solution)
        Albert H.’s recent post ..Good Eye Protection To Work BetterMy Profile

  13. It’s cliche for a reason, unplugging and plugging back in your router and modem will solve the vast majority of connectivity issues right off the bat.

  14. hello,
    thank you for sharing this post which is really helpful. people who have online jobs will be very frustrated when there is frequent internet interruption. having a basic knowledge and skill on how to fix the internet connection is truly a great weapon so that productivity will not be decreased.

  15. SOmetimes routers can cause the problem.

    Certain routers store connection settings in memory and that memory becomes corrupt. Rebooting a router allows for the router to clear all of it’s volatile memory and reset itself.

  16. This is a really great post and i am also share this with my friends on facebook or twitter because this will be useful for all of us.thanks for sharing the informative pos about how we can reconnect our internet connection.
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  17. Nice writeup, whenever I’m unable to connect to the internet, I always find that it’s due to my router crashing, which seems to be a rather common occurrence, well not too common, maybe once every 6 months. The annoying thing about it, is that it’s difficult to tell when the issue is due to the router failing.

    I think that’s one important thing that you failed to mention.
    Rodger’s recent post ..Top Registry CleanerMy Profile

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