I recently purchased a Dimensions desktop with McAfee security software pre-installed. I have been attempting to set up an internet connection this evening.
I have a cable modem internet access account with a local company, and have been using it with an old desktop for two years now. After resetting the modem, I hooked it up to my new Dell desktop. An internet connection was established; when I view my network connections, I can see a status of "active". However, all attempts to view a web page result in a "page not found".
The opinion of my cable modem internet access company is that it is a Dell issue, not a connection issue. They believe this because of a test we did over the phone. We reset the modem, and connected using my old desktop. A connection was established, I was able to view a web page, and "all packets of data were successfully received". We then immediately reset the modem and hooked it up to the new desktop. A connection was established, but no web pages were retrievable. Also, "50% of all packets failed, and were not received", according to the cable modem guys. They were able to ping my desktop, and I was able to ping "yahoo.com". But no internet access. It was also suggested that I disable McAfee (which I purchased with the desktop). That did not help.
Later, while on the phone with Dell technical support, I was advised to uninstall McAfee completely. This was after I was on hold, and heard a recorded voice while waiting basically saying the same thing..............."if you have a connection, but no internet access, McAfee may be your problem". Uninstalling McAfee did not work, and now I am concerned about getting it back! I was not sent a CD, so how do I get back what I paid for and was instructed to remove? I seem to be going backwards.
I also rebooted my new desktop using the Dell Dimension Resource CD, and execute an Express Test. All tests were executed successfully.
At any rate, please advise on what I should do to get web access. I can provide more information if need be. Thank you.
After uninstalling McAfee, did you reset your broadband modem again (turn the modem and the computer off, turn the modem on, wait about 5 minutes, then turn the computer on). Lots of problems with McAfee have been reported on these forums.
Thanks for your reply. I did as you suggested (turned off modem, turned off computer, waited 1 minute, reset modem, waited 5 minutes, turned on computer), but I still have my problem.
Interestingly, I tried to load hotmail.com instead of cnn.com, and got a slightly different result. Instead of a "could not find web page" error, the page partially loaded. But only partially........and only after an excruciating amount of time (2-3 minutes). I attempted cnn.com after that, and it failed to load.
I will search this forum for all McAfee issues. But I'm puzzled what McAfee issue I could have now that I have uninstalled McAfee? I was actually thinking that "it's definitely not McAfee now", and was more concerned about getting that already-paid-for software back at some point when this problem is solved.
At any rate, I would appreciate any other suggestions you have. I'm simply at a loss to understand how I can have a connection, but can not see cnn.com.
As for the reinstallation of McAfee, Dell always provides a CD for the reinstallation of any software that is preinstalled on your comptuter. It could be on the Application - Already Installed on Your Computer CD, or it could be on a separate McAfee CD. In any case, don't worry about reinstalling McAfee until you get the internet connectivity issue resolved.
Did you install any software for your cable modem connection. Normally no software is necessary and a cable modem connection should work out of the box.
Do a search on your computer for a file named hosts. Note that it has no extension and is not the file hosts.sam. You have to make sure that your search includes hidden and system files. Once you find the file, open it with Notepad, copy the contents of the hosts file and paste them into a message here.
Some other useful information can be obtained by going to Start > Run and typing cmd follwed by Enter. This brings you to a command prompt. Type the comman ipconfig /all (note the space between the g and the /). Post the results of this command.
Here are the results of the two tests you asked me to do:
# Copyright (c) 1993-1999 Microsoft Corp.
# This is a sample HOSTS file used by Microsoft TCP/IP for Windows.
# This file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. Each
# entry should be kept on an individual line. The IP address should
# be placed in the first column followed by the corresponding host name.
# The IP address and the host name should be separated by at least one
# Additionally, comments (such as these) may be inserted on individual
# lines or following the machine name denoted by a '#' symbol.
# For example:
# 22.214.171.124 rhino.acme.com # source server
# 126.96.36.199 x.acme.com # x client host
start -> run -> cmd -> ipconfig /all
Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1.2600]
(C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.
C:\Documents and Settings\Marc>ipconfig /all
Windows IP Configuration
Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : FRTX141
Primary Dns Suffix . . . . . . . :
Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Hybrid
IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Broadcom 440x 10/100 Integrated Controller
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-0D-56-5B-0D-A8
Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration IP Address. . . : 169.254.24.169
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.0.0
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . :
C:\Documents and Settings\Marc>
The hosts file that you posted is the sample hosts file with the name hosts.sam. What I need to see is the hosts file which is just named hosts (it has no period in it and does not have three letters after the extension name). In order to find the proper file, open a Windows Explorer window, the click on Tools > Folder Options. On the View menu, make sure it is set to show hidden files and folders, and remove the check marks in the boxes in front of "Hide file extensions for known file types" and "Hide protected operating system files". Do the search again - the file you are looking for is named hosts.
The output from the ipconfig /all command indicates that your network card is not getting an IP address from your cable modem. The IP address it has - 169.254.24.169 is the Autoconfiguration address which is what Windows gives it when it cannot find a DHCP server from which to get a valid IP address. You will never get an internet connection with an Autoconfiguration IP address. Did you do this test with the calble modem powered on and connected to your computer? If not, try it again with the everything powered on and connected.
Check to see if the link lights on both the cable modem and your network card are lit when both are powered on and connected by a cable. If they are not lit, try a different cable if you have one available. The link lights must be lit in order for the network card to connect with the cable modem. If the link lights are lit, go to the command prompt again and issue the command ipconfig /realease /renew (agin note the spaces in this command string). Does it now get a vaild IP address (something other than 169.254.24.169)?
I actually did search for a file (including system & hidden files) named "hosts" without a .SAM extension. I found two files named "hosts", one with a file type of "file", and one with a file type of "SAM". I chose the former. After taking a closer look though, they are in fact both identical. So........I was actually unable to find a "hosts" file other than the SAM. I've tried search in different ways; if it is there, it is hiding real well. I'm a bit stumped here.
I'm on shaky ground a bit in this department, but I think this might be important. When I was initially setting up my desktop, I was sent to a screen which requested the following information for my internet connection:
IP Address / Subnet Mask / Gateway DNS / etc., etc.
The screen also suggested I contact my cable modem internet access company if I did not know this information. So I did. When I called for this information, I was informed by my company that "all cable modem internet access is obtained NOT by providing this information, but rather by automatically obtaining an IP address upon connection", or something to that extent. They said that there should be a box to check in order to automatically obtain an IP address upon connection, and there in fact was. I checked it, and moved on. It sort of sounds like that's not the correct thing to do from your posting earlier. I'm unsure, though, if this has anything to do with the problem.
I have been testing with the cable modem powered on, and connected to my computer. The link lights all appear to be working; I confirmed this with my cable modem internet access company when we tested both my old & new desktops. I have four link lights: POWER, CABLE, PC, DATA. In the case of both computers (both my old one which works fine, and my new one which establishes a connection but does not display a web page), the POWER, CABLE, & PC lights are solid green, and the DATA light is blinking green.
You asked me to see if the link lights on my "network card" are lit. If that is a light somewhere OTHER than my cable modem, then I'm unsure where it is. I'm very unfamiliar with network cards, and the lights associated with them.
I attempted to connect again to my new desktop, in order run those commands you suggested. I was able to get results when I issued commands of both "ipconfig /release" & "ipconfig /renew", but not "ipconfig /release /renew" (that resulted in an error, which I included below............again, I'm on unfamiliar ground). Here are my results:
start -> run -> cmd -> ipconfig /release
C:\Documents and Settings\Marc>ipconfig /release
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 0.0.0.0
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 0.0.0.0
start -> run -> cmd -> ipconfig /renew
C:\Documents and Settings\Marc>ipconfig /renew
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . : austin.rr.com
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 188.8.131.52
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.252.0
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 184.108.40.206
start -> run -> cmd -> ipconfig /release /renew
C:\Documents and Settings\Marc>ipconfig /release /renew
The operation failed as no adapter is in the state permissible for
The renew command does seem to "get a valid IP address other than 169.254.24.169", although I'm unsure if that's what it really means. I immediately testing my web access just to see, and was still unable to access cnn.com.
If you have any idea why I'm unable to find the right "hosts" file, let me know. The only "hosts" I can find when searching the C: drive and including system & hidden folders (I went through your steps to make sure) is the SAM "hosts" file, apparently.
Thanks for your continued help! This is much less frustrating than my phone experience. I'll be awaiting any new suggestions.
The hosts file does not appear to be the issue, so let's not worry about that for now.
Looking through all of the messages in this thread so far, it looks like we never established how you are connecting to the cable modem. It is an ethernet connection, right? Not a USB connection?
If it is an ethernet connection the link light should be right next to where you plug the ethernet cable into the computer. If you state which model computer you have, I could probably point you to a document on the Dell web site that would show you where the link light is.
We do appear to be making some progress. The output from you ipconfig commands show that after you issued the release command and then followed it with the renew command, you did get a valid IP address for your ISP. The connection should have been working at that point. However, when you issued the command ipconfig /release /renew, you did not get an IP address. This suggests that there is something fishy with your network card. It worked for a minute, but then it didn't work. This could be caused by a bad network card, a faulty network cable, or a loose connection between the card/modem/network card.
If you can find the link light, see if wiggling the cable results in it turning on and off.
I am using an ethernet connection, not a USB connection. I was able to find the network link light, right next to where I plug the cable in. I also noticed that my user's manual defines and pinpoints both a "link activity light", and a "network integrity light". As soon as I plug in the cable, the link activity light goes solid green and the network integrity light is orange and blinking. The connection is securely fastened, and wiggling does not stop the solid green & blinking orange.
Just to be on the safe side, I booted up the new desktop again, and then went to start -> run -> cmd. I did an ipconfig /release, which released the 169....... autoconfig IP address. Then I did an ipconfig /renew, which created a new IP address (something other than the 169...... autoconfig IP address). I then immediately opened up IE to make sure that I was unable to pull up a web page, and I was not successful pulling up a web page.
It's interesting that you seem to be zeroing in on the network card. The guy I talked to at the cable modem internet access company believes that is the culprit as well. In addition to connecting to my old desktop successfully (while having trouble with my new desktop), he also had me flip the cable (modem end into the computer, and vice versa) and try again............with the same result. I have no idea how expert he was, but he seemed pretty confident that the network card was faulty somehow. Anyway, just passing that along.
To check the network card, go to the command prompt again and type: ping 127.0.0.1 This is the loopback test, it should not time out. If it does, then it suggests a problem with the network card. Do it several times, however, since it seems like you are getting intermittent connectivity.
A cheap troubleshooting step for the network card is to puchase and install a cheapo card. You can usually find these at places like CompUSA, Office Depot, Office Max, or BestBuy for less than $10 (I once got one for free after rebate). If the PCI network card works, then you know the network card is the problem. You still haven't said which model computer you have, but if it is one of the newer ones, the network card is integrated on the motherboard, and you would have to call Dell Tech Support and demand a replacement motherboard.
If the network card on your old computer is a PCI card, you could also try installing that in your new system as a troubelshooting step.
You really should try pinging your Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 220.127.116.11 to make sure the NIC card and ethernet cable is truely working and ok. "Start -> Run -> command"....this will open a DOS shell window for your - white on black.......just issue the command "ping ip_address" where Ip_address is the default-gateway (router) IP address. You should get a "Reply in X ms" if all is well
Post the results to help the diagnosis be completed.then try a "ping www.dell.com" and a "tracert www.dell.com" to see if basic Ip connectivity and DNS (Domain Name Server) are working correctly.
I did ping 127.0.0.1 numerous times, and each time appeared to be successful (4 packets sent, 4 packets received, 0 failed).
My Dell is a Dimension 2400.
I will give you cheapo network card test a run; thanks for the suggestion.
Please - you really should try pinging your Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 18.104.22.168 to make sure the NIC card and ethernet cable is truely working and ok.
The 127.0.0.1 is an internal loopback address in the IP stack of your PC - you need to TX packets out of your NIC card to truly test it. "Start -> Run -> command"....this will open a DOS shell window for your - white on black.......just issue the command "ping ip_address" where Ip_address is the default-gateway (router) IP address. You should get a "Reply in X ms" if all is well
The real problem here is that sometimes he sometimes gets an IP address and is able to ping, but other times he cannot get an IP address. When it can't get an IP address, it obviously will not be able to ping anywhere on the network. Since the connection seems to be intermittant, that is why I have suggested either a bad network card or a bad cable.
Know what you're saying - but don't see enough evidence to prove NIC is faulty - once he tries an Off subnet ping - will know more.......he has managed to recieve a compelete cycle of DHCP Discover(TX broadast from PC NIC), DHCP OFFER(Unicast from Modem) and DHCP ACK(Broadcast from PC NIC).......which makes me not think his NIC is not faulty......otherwise info would have remained incorrect.
The initial lack of IP address could have been due to cable mode not powered up or ethernet not plugged in in which case Windows would have defaulted to RFC1918 AutoIP addressing.....blame Windows.....it doesn't have the greatest IP stack.
Have not seen him try a ping to the default g/w - without that info he could be throwing away a perfectly good NIC,,,,,,,
So lets get pinging default g/w's and URL's such as www.dell.com to gather the info