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[SOLVED] Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

854 Views 18 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  SA Spurs1
Hey Guys,

First I'd like to say that I'm a huge fan of this website. It's helped me so many times that I couldn't count them right now. This is, unfortunately, the first post I've had to make where I couldn't find the solution already discussed.

A little background. I recently did a clean Windows XP Professional install on my family's Dell Dimension 8300 desktop computer. The installation of the operating system went well, however, when completed, the network was acting funny.

We have a Linksys WRT54G Wireless Router that we use in the house to keep our laptops connected, however, we hardwire our desktop (problem computer) to the router since it doesn't have wireless capabilities. Now, since the install, the networking card works flawlessly when plugging the cable from the wall directly into the computer. However, since we require a wireless connection for the rest of the laptops in the house, we need to be able to plug the cable from the wall to the router, then from the router to the computer. Essentially giving wired internet to the desktop and wireless internet to the laptops. However, the desktop reads "Limited to No Connectivity" when going through the router.

I ran diagnostic tools and found that it seems that the computer is unable to communicate with the DHCP server running on the router. No other computers, when connected via wire, has a problem so I've narrowed it down to some type of setting on the desktop that is preventing the computer from receiving an IP from the DHCP server on the router.

I am getting a 169.254.x.x IP address with a subnet mask of I'm running Windows XP Professional SP3. I've already tried resetting the TCP/IP Stack as well as the WINSOCK Catalog; neither worked to fix the problem.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Set the address statically and then see if you can communicate with the router. It could be a firewall configuration issue so check your settings.
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Thank you for your response!

Unfortunately, I have tried this avenue as well to no avail. :sigh:

Any other suggestions?

I'm uploading the network diagnostic tests that I ran on the computer. You'll notice the DHCP IP address is invalid and the IP is the Microsoft assigned 169.X.X.X.

Thanks for y'all's help!


Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

The cable that you are using could be bad or the wrong type
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Thank you lorjack, unfortunately, we've replaced the cable which has also not helped. The cable works when plugged into all three other laptops directly. Also, this cable was being used prior to the reinstallation of Windows without problem.

I'm thinking it has something to do with the inability for the computer to communicate with the router at all. Once again, I've eliminated the router and cable as sources of the problem.

Any other suggestions?
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Did you try setting up both the LAN side of the Linksys Router and your desktop PC as static IP (with the router as the gateway in the PC connection properties?)

If this works then there is a problem in the "automatic" DHCP configuration on your PC.
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

I'm surprised setting an IP address statically didn't work. Try reinstalling the drivers for the NIC. Also, if you haven't already change the port on the router that it is plugged into.

A question, where does the cable in the wall go?
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Yeah -- I set up a static IP address with the computer. I used the TCP/IP Settings and entered the following settings:

IP address: (Yes, I know that 192.168.2.x is usually but we have that changed in the router for security)

Subnet mask:

Default gateway:

Preferred DNS server: 205.152.37.xx (xx = numbers, just censored)
Alternate DNS server: 205.152.144.xx (xx = numbers, just censored)

The plus is that the networking icon no longer says "Limited or No Connectivity" however the status page shows 754 packets sent and 0 received.... :rolleyes:

What are some reasons that even a static IP wouldn't allow for the card to receive packets?!

This is especially frustrating because if the cable coming from the street (ethernet DSL cable) is plugged directly into the computer, it works without a problem. In essence, this is making us choose between internet on the desktop or internet on the laptops! :mad:

Any help would be appreciated!

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Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Check your Services are Started on all PCs:
  • COM+ Event System (for WZC issues)
  • Computer Browser
  • DHCP Client
  • DNS Client
  • Network Connections
  • Network Location Awareness
  • Remote Procedure Call (RPC)
  • Server
  • TCP/IP Netbios helper
  • Wireless Zero Configuration (XP wireless configurations)
  • WLAN AutoConfig (Vista wireless configurations)
  • Workstation

Note: You can check the services in Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Services.

All of these services should be started, and their startup type should be automatic (or perhaps manual).

If a service is not running, open it's properties and check the dependencies. Check each of the dependencies and see which one is preventing the service from running. Checking the event log is also a good idea here, there may be clues to what is failing.
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Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

@johnwill: Thank you for your suggestions. I went through and checked all of the services and all of them are started and set to automatic with one exception; Computer Browser. When I started it, it ended shortly after and said that that usually happened when the service isn't needed. I checked all of the dependencies and all seem to be functioning correctly. Unfortunately, no connection yet...

I have an Intel(R) PRO/100 VE Networking Card installed and went to the Intel website and found that the driver seems to be outdated, but Windows Update never found the latest so I didn't realize it was until visiting the website. I'm downloading the updated driver right now and hopefully it will fix it! I'll let you guys know.
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

:sigh: Still a no go...
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

Do you have another router to see if it can communicate with it? Is this NIC on board or an expansion card? Try a different card.
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

I do not have another router but we did think it was the router at first and did try it with the new router to no avail... The NIC is on board but the more I mess with it, the more apt I am to just go buy a new one and try it out.

This problem is frustrating because I've isolated every component of the system and tested it and they all passed. When you put all the components together though, it gives me the errors and won't allow for any packets to be received. AHHHHHHH!

Any other suggestions? I think I'm going to try a new card tonight if I don't get somewhere soon...
Re: Please Help: LAN Connection Problems

I FIGURED IT OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I had to lower the LAN speed from 100mb/full duplex to 10mb/half. Below are instructions for people who are having the same issue. Also, thank you everyone who submitted solutions!

To lower the LAN card speed for Windows XP:
1. Go to Start click on Run and type devmgmt.msc and press Enter.
2. The Device Manager window should open. Expand the Network Adapters category.
3. Right-click on your Ethernet Network Adapter driver and select Properties.
4. Select Advanced tab.
5. Look for Link Speed/Duplex mode Property. Select it.
6. Set the Value (to the right) to 10Mbps/Half Duplex.
7. Click OK.
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Running half-duplex at 10mbit will make file sharing REALLY slow!
You're right. I was able to move it up to full duplex using 10mbs. For some reason, my WRT54G won't work at the 100mbs. So I'm running 10mbs/Full Duplex which is fine with me because our connection is 2m down.
I'd suspect the cable if 10mbit runs but 100mbit doesn't run.
If you try all the ports will any of the ports run a 100mbit. If not I would suggest you upgrade the firmware on the router. One other thing if you did a reload of the OS you needed to run Desktop System Software, and Chipset drivers first before loading any other drivers.
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