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Common network problems and solutions

If your network connection is misconfigured or has a technical failure, you will see some error messages displayed on the screen. These messages tell the user basic information about the problem being encountered.

The following list of common connection-related errors should be helpful in troubleshooting network problems.

1. A Network Cable Is Unplugged

The message “A Network Cable Is Unplugged” appears on the Windows desktop. A few other cases also cause this error, and each will require its own solution, including damaged cables or problems with device drivers.

If you connect to a wired network, you will lose access to the network. If connected to a wireless network, your network will still work properly, but this error message will become a nuisance as it will appear over and over again until the problem is resolved.

2. IP Address Conflict (Address Already in Use)

If a computer set up with a static IP address is being used by some other device on the network, that computer (and possibly other devices) will not be able to use the network.

Examples are two or more devices using the IP address 192.168.1.115.

In some cases, this problem can even occur with DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) addresses.

You can read more articles about fixing IP address conflicts on Windows computers.

3.The Network Path Cannot Be Found

Updating the TCP/IP configuration can resolve the “The Network Path Cannot Be Found” error when you try to access another device on the network.

You’ll get this error from using the wrong network name if the share doesn’t exist, the time is different on two different devices, or when you don’t have access.

4. Duplicate Name Exists on the Network

After starting a Windows computer that is connected to the local network, you may get this error. When the “Duplicate Name Exists on the Network” error occurs, your computer will not be able to access the network.

You may need to change the computer name to resolve this problem.

5. Limited or No Connectivity

When trying to open a web page or network resource in Windows, you may receive a “Limited or No Connectivity” error message.

Resetting the TCP/IP stack is a common solution to this problem.

6. Connected with Limited Access

A technical glitch in Windows can cause the “Connected with Limited Access” error message to appear when making certain types of wireless connections. That’s why Microsoft released a fix in an update service pack for Windows Vista systems.

However, you may still find this error in other versions of Windows. This error can also occur on the home network for other reasons. You will have to reset the router or connection and then disconnect from the wireless connection.

7. Unable to Join Network Failure (error -3)

The “Unable to Join Network Failure” error appears on an Apple iPhone or iPod touch when unable to connect to WiFi.

You can troubleshoot the same way you would for a PC that can’t connect to a hotspot.

8. “Unable to Establish the VPN Connection” (error 800)

When using the VPN client in Windows, you may get an “800” error when trying to connect to the VPN server. This generic message can indicate client-side or server-side problems.

The client may be running a firewall and blocking the VPN or losing connection to the local network, thus disconnecting the VPN. Another possible cause is that the VPN name or address was entered incorrectly.

Reference:

  • How to fix a dropping Internet connection.
  • 3-step instructions for resolving computer network problems are shown by yellow exclamation marks.
  • Tips to fix intermittent network connection errors on your computer.

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