Troubleshooting Issues with Wired Networks

An indepth look into issues that affect wired ethernet networks in homes and offices.

We take a look into the common issues that affect your existing network, causing errors that may prevent the normalized funationality of your home and office networks. We also provide a few solutions to there issues.

Episode #1-23 released on March 6, 2011

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Last week we looked into how to diagnose wireless networks, and although wireless is amazing, wired networks are traditionally faster, more secure, and by far more reliable. For these reasons I still use wired networks for any permeantly position computer in my home and office. Let me remind you that it is also easier to diagnose issues with wired networks.

So, how does one diagnose problems with a wired network. There are several tools we can use on both Windows and Linux computers, in fact, the same tool, just rewritten. My favourite test is the Ping test. First, you need to know the IP of your router. Its in your manual. You can also use the ipconfig command in the Windows Terminal, aka Dos. Your router's ip address will be the same as the default gateway's ip address. Usually its either or, but it can be a variation of those, too. In windows, select run from the start menu, and type in CMD, then hit enter. In linux, open up a terminal window. We are going to ping the router to see if we can see it. The command is "ping (enter router ip here)", then hit enter. If you get a 100% return success, then you should have no issues. If you have returns, but some fails, then you have a small problem. If nothing succeeds, then you have a major issue on your hands.

So, if you have issues with this test, you will have to check several things. One, make sure your router is powered and working. If you have more than one computer, and the ping test works without issues on other computers, examine the cables for problems. If you have pets, kids, mobile funiture near cables, check that the cables aren't worn or damaged. Anything that is comprimised should be replaced, or repaired by a computer technician in a computer store. They have testers to verify the work is done correctly.

If your router is defective or not working, try doing a hard reset before buying a new one. A hard reset can be achieved by unpluging all the cables, and depressing the reset switch continously in excess of 30 seconds. Please be aware that if your router had a wireless connection, it will be reset, as well. Now, you may have to reset your modem as well, simply hit the reset switch on the modem for a second for it to reassign the IP address, DHCP information, and etc... At this point, if the router has its power lights on, and none of the lan lights, check the cables to see if they are plugged in properly, you may also check every computer to see if they are plugged in correctly, as well.

If the router is dead, just replace it. Wired routers are dirt cheap these days, you may want to get yourself a wireless 802.11N enabled router with a gigabit connection, if you need to upgrade, as well.

Remember, when verifying network connections. Check computer via ping, check cables, check cable connections and lights for confirmation, check router, reset router and reset modem. That's it. That is why we technicians consider diagnosing wired networks, so easy. If you do all that, and it still doesn't work, then the problem is driver or hardware related in the computer with the network issue. Replace the network card, if possible, or send it back to manufacteur for repair, if the problem is hardware. If driver related, delete drivers in the computer, restart, reinstall, and that should work.

Also, a note, the driver offered by Windows update for the Realtek gigabit network driver, from experience causes more problems, than good. Use the driver offered from the manufacteurs web-site, or the driver disk.

If you determine that your router, eternet card, or motherboard is at fault, contact tech support at the manufacteur, demand an RMA number, send the hardware back, insured. They will send you back you stuff repair or replaced.

Host : Steve Smith | Music : Steve Smith | Editor : Steve Smith | Producer : Zed Axis Productions

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