How to Resolve Limited or No Connectivity Errors in Windows

Troubleshoot limited internet access errors in Windows

What to Know

  • Reboot computer, modem, router > reset Windows TCP/IP stack > check network adapter > update driver > run Network Troubleshooter.
  • If problems continue, check router configurations and functionality.

This article explains how to walk through troubleshooting steps to correct connectivity issue errors in Windows 10, Windows 8, and Windows 7 that you may encounter when trying to set up or make network connections on a Windows computer. The error may look like one of these messages:

  • Limited or no connectivity: The connection has limited or no connectivity. You might be unable to access the Internet or some network resources.
  • The connection is limited.

How to Troubleshoot and Resolve "Limited or No Connectivity" Errors

This error might result from any of several different technical glitches or configuration problems on the computer or on the path between the computer and the rest of the network. Try these steps to solve the problem:

An illustration listing the troubleshooting steps for Windows connectivity issues.
Lifewire
  1. First, start with this How to Fix Common Internet Connection Problems guide. If you don't have luck there, come back to this page and start with Step 2.

  2. Restart your computer. This is a prevalent step for nearly any computer problem, and since the network issue may be tied up in your computer software, you should start with a reboot. You may have already tried this step, in which case you can move down to the next one.

  3. Reboot your router or modem. If restarting your router doesn't work at all, or is only a temporary solution, continue with Step 4.

    We're saying to reboot, not reset. Rebooting is just powering it down, and then turning it back on while resetting the router means to restore all of its settings to default - a step that's a bit more destructive than what we're after right now.

  4. Check the Ethernet cable if connecting to your network using one. Your cable may have failed. First, unplug the cable and then reattach it. Then, if you need to, temporarily replace your network cable with a new or different one to see if the problem has to do with the cable.

  5. Run this command in an elevated Command Prompt to reset the Windows TCP/IP stack to its original state, a step that often fixes lots of network-related issues:

    netsh int ip reset C:\logreset.txt
    

    Here are some other netsh commands you can try if resetting the network adapter didn't fix the network error. Also, in an elevated Command Prompt, enter the first command, then the second, then the third, in that order, pressing Enter after each of them.

    netsh int tcp set heuristics disablednetsh int tcp set global autotuninglevel=disablednetsh int tcp set global rss=enabled
    

    Then, run this command to verify that the settings were disabled:

    netsh int tcp show global
    

    Finish with a reboot.

  6. Check the sleep settings. If on Wi-Fi, when you see this error, the network adapter may be going to sleep to conserve power.

  7. Find your local IP address if your network is using DHCP

    If the IP address is set to a static IP address, you need to change the adapter's settings to obtain an address from the DHCP server automatically. Ensure that DHCP ends up enabled and that there isn't a specific IP address recorded for the adapter. If the local IP address your computer is using starts with 169.254, it means it's invalid and isn't obtaining a useful address from the router. Try running the commands ipconfig /release and then ipconfig /renew in a Command Prompt.

  8. Try updating the device driver for the network card. An outdated card or corrupted driver might be the problem.

  9. If Windows prompts you to try to fix the connection itself, then agree to that and run the Network Troubleshooter or Network Repair utility (they're called different names depending on your version of Windows).

  10. If you're connected over Wi-Fi, and the router uses wireless security, your WPA or another security key may not be set properly. Login to your router, check the wireless security configuration on your computer's network and update it if necessary.

  11. If there's still no connection, unplug your router and connect the computer directly to your modem. If this configuration works, and you no longer see the error, your router might be malfunctioning.

  12. Contact the router manufacturer for additional support. However, if the error remains and the network still appears to be down, contact your internet service provider for support—the problem may lie with them.

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