Windows Won’t Connect to the Internet – Corrupt Winsock Fix

There are many different causes that can prevent a Windows XP computer from connecting to the Internet. Some are easily identifiable however some are not. In this article I will be covering how to fix corrupt Winsock registry keys in Windows XP, Vista and 7. If you are getting an IP of the type 169.254.x.x, there is a good chance that you have a corrupt Winsock. If some of you are wondering why I am including Windows XP in this article in the year 2011, I will tell you that even though Windows XP is an old and outdated operating system, many business are still clinging to it due to the bad publicity generated by Windows Vista.

How to tell if your Winsock is corrupt?

Click on Start -> Run -> Type “cmd” and press enter -> at the C:\ prompt type “ipconfig“.

If you get an IP starting with 169.254 you are not obtaining an IP from the router or dsl modem, IPs of the type 169.254.x.x are ips automatically assigned by windows when something is wrong with the network connection. Take a look at the following picture:

As you can see, my IP is 169.254.211.67 and my gateway is not present. This symptom is typical when winsock corruption exists.   I must say however that winsock corruption is not the only cause that results in a 169.254.x.x IP, but if you have already gone through every possible cause and solution, and nothing seems to work, there is a good probability that indeed this is the cause of the problem.

Fix For Windows XP

Windows XP frequently has issues with Winsock making it impossible for the ethernet card to obtain an IP from the network.  Fortunately there is a small program that has been going around the web for some time. It can be found in a wide variety of pages even though its creator’s page does not exist anymore. The name of the program is WinsockXPfix.

Download the program and run it. I would recommend you click on the “ReG-Backup” to do a backup of the registry in case something goes wrong. However, I must say that in all the years I have been using this program I’ve never had anything bad happen, but it is always better to be safe than sorry. After doing the backup click on the button named “Fix”, Windows XP fix will take a few seconds to reset all the winsock registry keys and  will ask you to restart. When you do, your problems will most probably be gone!

Fix For Windows 7 and Vista

WinsockXPfix unfortunately only works in Windows XP. However, there is a native solution for Winsock corruption in Windows 7 and Vista.

To reset Winsock registry keys implement the following Steps:

  1. Click on “Start“.
  2. Type Cmd in the search field at the bottom of the menu.
  3. Click Ctrl-Shift-Enter to open the Command Prompt with administrator rights and acknowledge the elevation request.
  4. Type “netsh winsock reset” at the Command Prompt and press enter.
  5. Resetting Winsock will take a few seconds, when it is finished, restart your computer.

Other Causes

If the method in this article did not work for you, read my article: My Computer Won’t Connect to the Internet – All Possible Causes

3 comments:

  1. Chris, 13. September 2011, 22:35

    Like I mentioned, the IP address IS correct and not 169……
    I did use another computer on this same connection and I actually took the computer home and connected it up to my own router where I don’t need to enter anything to log on as it is pre-programmed automatic. I noticed what the IP was on my computer and then viewed it on his and found it to be exactly the same.
    Sporadically at times I am able to connect then it won’t just when I think I have the problem licked.

    It seems like most things of this nature, I wound up actually figuring this out myself. Please share this with anyone else who has a similar problem. What I surmised by noticing the behavior of what was going on was that there must be some sort of software that is somehow blocking the connection. The only thing that was running was Webroot but at first I had doubted that this software would be the culprit, so for the longest time I was just spinning my wheels and getting nowhere. Then I decided, heck with it and I un-installed it and what do you know, the connection works fine again.

    Don’t know what the deal was with that as I typically don’t use Webroot but there you have it. Based upon this I suppose I will avoid using this program on my own computer.

     
  2. Pablo Garcia, 1. September 2011, 21:05

    Hi Chris:
    If you go go to the command prompt and the IP is something like 169.x.x.x is likely that you need the Winsock fix. Either that or there is something wrong with the network card. or the connections. Have you tried testing the connection with another computer?

     
  3. Chris, 28. August 2011, 1:27

    I have a friend that has a Dell Dimension 8550. At first it had issues with not being able to use the USB ports and the device manager would not work at all. So I did some research and found that I needed to restore all of the Windows XP OS files back to their originals using the official installation disk. That cleared up the issues and it all seemed to work for a time.

    However, now it can’t connect to the internet using a LAN. It reads the IP address correctly, and even attempts to go online, but can’t. I re I tried using all of the diagnostic tools that XP offers but get no where. -installed drivers from the Dell site and after that it worked, but after I rebooted, it stopped working. I tried reinstalling drives again but now nothing. After reading this article I am going to try winsock xp fix as suggested. If that doesn’t work, what else can I do? I have never seen this problem of all the years I have been working with computers.

    I am beginning to think that the hardware itself has an issue of some sort. I am stumped by this.

     

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