Lost access to the internet after it had been working earlier? Not able to go online on wired and wireless devices?
Read this article to Internet connectivity troubleshooting problems.
New router is not connecting to the internet
Performing these steps forces the broadband modem to flush any information it is holding onto from your previous router. Try browsing the Internet. If you still can’t, go through the router setup instructions again, now that you have reset the broadband modem.
Router setup software is not detecting the router
Quick Solution: This is actually a common problem with newer routers on the market that have automated setup. Sometimes the setup process just doesn’t work. Here’s how you can bypass the setup and go right into the router’s management interface to set up your wireless network. Connect an Ethernet cable from your computer to one of the LAN ports of the router (you can also keep the router connected to the broadband modem). Go into your computer’s network settings. In Windows 7 and 8, they are located in Control Panel | Network and Internet | Network and Sharing Center | Change Adapter Settings.
Right-click Local Area Connection and select Properties. Double-click Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IP v4). In the TCP/IP v4 windows that opens, click the radio button, and select “Use the following IP address.” Under “IP address” you type an address that matches the default IP address of your router, a string of numbers broken up by periods. You’ll find this in the router’s documentation. For instance, if the default IP of the router is “192.168.1.1” you should type in “192.168.1.2”. Making the last number different prevent an IP address conflict with the router but places your computer and the router on the same network. Under “Subnet mask,” type in “255.255.255.0”. This is the subnet mask for your typical home network. For “Gateway” type in the default IP of the router. In this example it would be the “192.168.1.1” address.
You now have your computer on the same network as the router. You can now open a browser and enter the router’s IP address. Just type the router number into your address bar, like this: “http://192.168.1.1”. You will be prompted to enter a username and password. This information is also available with your router’s documentation. Once you are in the management interface, you can manually setup your wireless connection: the SSID, pass phrase, and security.
If you can’t browse to the router’s interface, you may have made a typo. Recheck your network settings under “TCP/IP v4” properties once more.
The Wireless Network’s name/SSID doesn’t show up
Quick Solution: Force your computer or device to connect to the router even if it’s not broadcasting. From Windows, go into Control Panel | Network and Internet | Network and Sharing | Manage Wireless Networks.
If you see your wireless network listed, right-click on its icon and click Properties. Check the option “Connect even if the network is not broadcasting its name (SSID).”
If you don’t see your wireless network listed, click “Add” then select “Manually connect to a wireless network” and put your wireless information in.
The Wi-Fi Signal Drops, When I Move to Another Room in the House
Quick Solution: There are several things that could cause a wireless signal to drop. The big culprit is interference. Cordless phones and any device using the 2.4GHz band could be the cause. Even things you wouldn’t imagine can cause interference, including mirrors and glass.
Once you’ve checked for physical interference, test something: Do all your devices and computers lose signal at the same location, or just one in particular? If all, chances are the problem lies with the router. Consider an external antenna for the router (if the router supports the addition). Also check for router-firmware updates. You may have to consider investing in a wireless extender.
If one specific machine is dropping the signal, update the firmware for that machine’s wireless client adapter, or upgrade to a new adapter.
Forgot Password of the router
Quick Solution: You have to reset the router back to its factory default settings, and ou’ll lose all your configuration settings. On the back of most routers, there’s a recessed Reset button. Using a paper clip, hold this button down until the LEDs blink. Once you’ve reset the router back to factory settings, you can use the default username and password again.
Many current routers allow you to save the configuration settings so you don’t have to reconfigure after performing a factory reset. Check to see if your router has that capability. If it does, save the settings now.
The router shuts itself off
Quick Solution: This is usually caused by overheating. Many of us leave our routers running 24/7. As it ages, the router can become less efficient at cooling. Check to ensure the cooling vents on the router are not obstructed. Unplug the router for a bit. Use a can of compressed air to clear out as much dust as you can from the vents.
Newer routers have energy efficient settings that let you specify when they should shut the wireless radio off or power down, such as after 30 minutes of being idle. If your router doesn’t have this feature, best practice is to turn it off when it’s not being used, to extend its life.
My Network Is Just So… Slow!
Quick Solution: If you are still having issues, here are a couple of other troubleshooting tips. Pay attention to what is slow in your network. Is it internally slow—transferring files among computers, for example—or is it browsing the Internet that’s slow? Is streaming from one device to another painfully slow? Look into updating firmware on all affected devices. If the problem device is a slow laptop or notebook, consider adding a more powerful USB wireless adapter.
If Internet access is slow, check to make sure you are getting near the bandwidth promised by your ISP. Use multiple speed test tools such as speedtest.net, speakeasy.net, and AT&T’s speedtest to get different results for comparison. Keep track of bandwidth at different times of the day and night as well as weekdays and weekends. Contact your ISP for further troubleshooting if you are not seeing the bandwidth promised by the ISP.
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