Basic troubleshooting network issues for newbies

Do you have a Problem with your Broadband Connection? Here is my guide on Troubleshooting network issues

 

Overview

These days it is pretty easy to fix most common network problems yourself, you might run in to network issues for a number of reasons, here are some common problems:

  • A network Cable that is not plugged in properly
  • A Network card that is not enabled in Windows
  • Corrupted or incompatible drivers or missing updates
  • Not resetting your computer or modem
  • Misconfiguration of Network Settings

 

Today I’d Like to give you a walkthrough and share some of my Tips that Professional Network Engineers use to troubleshoot Network Problems, on Windows based systems.

Common Computer or Laptop Problems

Make sure that your computer and everything that is attached to it is plugged in and Switched on

This is one of the biggest problems I see when I troubleshoot network Problems.  One day a relative of mine called me to say that he could not connect to the internet. I said “make sure that everything is plugged in.” He was convinced that it was, I said “Just check again.” He realised that a network cable came out of the router, he forgot to plug the cable back in after he had vacuumed the carpet.   Even though this is a simple thing, It is one of the first things a technician will ask you over the phone.

 

Other steps to take

  1. Check the phone line the runs from your phone jack to the port on your modem.
  2. Make sure that there’s no ADSL filter between the Phone jack and the modem.
  3. Check your network cable that runs from the Internet connection to the modem and to the Network adapter on your computer.. Ensure that your modem is plugged in and power is on
  4. To avoid dropouts, make sure that telephones are connected to the same line as the ADSL modem.

Try the built-in Windows Network Trouble-shooter. 

If the first scenario didn’t work you will find how effective the built-in trouble-shooter is, most times windows will work out the problem and fix it for you.

Click on start button, Click control panel, Select Network and Internet, Select Network and Sharing Centre, under change your networking settings click Troubleshoot Problems

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Select the Troubleshooting Option you want to diagnose

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Restart your Router or Modems

Sometimes the network configurations that you received from your Service Provider might be incorrect or need to be updated, or there may be a problem between your router and Service provider. By restarting your modem this will reset the connection.

 

Check your network Drivers

Sometimes if your network drivers are out-dated or corrupted these can prevent network connections or cause intermittent disconnections. By downloading and installing the latest network adapter drivers, usually can resolve these types of problems.

In windows you can find and install a driver by using windows update, install software from the manufacturer, or by downloading and installing the latest driver yourself

Tips to Check for Network Connection Problems

95% of Problems are cable related, they can break without any warning. Here are some of my tips to check for cable related problems.

1. Check the lights on Your Modem

Check your lights to ensure that you have a smooth connection; Most modems have indicator lights labelled “Internet” or “broadband”. Check that these are flashing, if not, that means there is a problem with connection between you and your service provider.

 

2. Check that You are using The Correct Network Adapter

Most of the time if you like using cable and then Wi-Fi you might disable one of these connections, verify this by checking the network ports on the computer, if they are flashing it usually indicates it’s connected, if it is not it could be that the network adapter is disabled, if you have run the network trouble-shooter usually the trouble-shooter would identify that there is a problem with your network adapter

 

3. Update your Router or Modems firmware

Your router or modem might need a firmware upgrade, especially if you have trouble connecting to a WI-FI security protocol such as WEP or WPA. Firmware is software that is embedded in your routers hardware device and controls how the device interacts with your operating system, you can download firmware from your manufacturer’s website. You should do this as your last resort, consult with your manufacturer before updating.

Well I hope this has helped you fix some of the most common network problems. These are just the Basic Fundamentals, if you need more help you can consult your Service Provider and they will be able to assist further.

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Anthony Rousek

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Technology Enthusiast, blogger and Microsoft Certified Professional

Anthony Rousek
Technology Enthusiast, blogger and Microsoft Certified Professional