How to Troubleshoot Network Connection Issues


It's extremely frustrating when unsuccessfully connecting to your network. However, through the process of elimination you may be able to diagnose and fix commonplace Internet connectivity issues.

  • Determine whether the problem has to do with the network connection. For example, are you trying to access a webpage and your browser keeps prompting you with a "Page cannot be displayed" error? Use a major search engine to find an alternate link to your original destination. If that works, then there is most likely a problem with the website and not with the network connection.

  • Check your computer's physical connection to the network. This will require you to check your data jack or Ethernet cable. Verify which port your Ethernet cable is connected to. In many cases, network connection issues can be resolved by checking to see if the correct cables are being used, or if they are plugged in the right places. In addition, you should test your router to make sure that it is working properly.

  • Find the network connections setting within your operating system if it's not a physical connection issue. In Windows 7, right-click the "Internet Access" icon (appears as several vertical bars) in the task bar and select "Troubleshoot problems." The Windows Network Diagnostics dialog appears. When prompted what type of networking problem you're experiencing, click on "I'm trying to reach a specific website or folder on a network." Then enter the address or path you are trying to connect to.

    In Mac OS X, go to "System Preferences" and click on "Network." Select the built-In Ethernet option, and click on "Configure."

  • Examine your firewall to confirm that it doesn't prevent you from connecting to the network. In many cases, your settings may be too high. You can also disable any background applications that may be running and preventing you from accessing the network. In a worst-case scenario, you may have a virus other malware that prevents you from properly accessing your network.

  • Contact your department's or campus technical support (IT) staff if your issues still have not been resolved. There may be something else that is wrong that needs to be addressed. Hopefully they will be able to troubleshoot your network connection issue.


  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/ Images
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