If your Windows 10 desktop or laptop suddenly lost the network connection and showed limited connectivity, here are the simple steps to fix it.
In this case, the Wi-Fi or Wired network can go offline and not be able to connect to the local network. It will impact the Internet and other network activities.
The below steps show how to fix the limited Wi-Fi connectivity issue in Windows 10, which also applies to the wired network.
If the Windows 10 network shows limited connectivity, the network adapter would not have an IP from the DHCP. If only one particular PC faces this issue at your work/home network, then apparently nothing is wrong with the network setup or DHCP server.
The particular Windows 10 laptop or desktop has some issues with the network adapter. When I encountered the same issue in my organization, the following steps helped me to solve it.
This problem is not specifically for the Wireless network adapter; it can also happen to your LAN wired network adapter. It’s an issue with the IP stack (IPv4 or IPv6 – based on which protocol you are using). Even though few solutions are suggested online, let me start with the possible (which worked for me straight away) solution, then other methods.
Updating or re-installing the WiFi adapter driver could solve some of the issues. But the limited connectivity issue in Windows 10/8.1 could be connected to IP address/DHCP. In this case, the network adapter will not get an IP address; hence it will be getting an APIPA address range, something like 169.245.x.x, which means you are in trouble.
The Solution for Limited Connectivity Wi-Fi on Windows 10
As described earlier, this is due to the IP address/IP stack problem, which can be resolved by resetting the TCP/IP stack to its default value. TCP/IP is a protocol used in most computers (including Mac, Linux, and Windows) and other network devices to communicate in LAN or WAN.
Use the NetShell utility (netsh.exe) command to perform the task.
1) Open the command prompt as Administrator. Search ‘cmd’ and right-click on cmd, then select ‘Run as administrator’ as below.
2) Type the following commands –
netsh winsock reset catalog (Reset WINSOCK entries to installation defaults)
netsh int ipv4 reset reset.log (Reset IPv4 TCP/IP stack to installation defaults)
3) Reboot the computer.
One of the above reset commands removes all persistent static route entries from the Windows 10/11 computer. I faced this issue and had to add those static routes again by the ‘route add’ command.
This will mostly solve the problem of a limited Wi-Fi connectivity issue in Windows 10 or 8.1.
4) If you still face the problem and your laptop can’t connect to the Internet and other local network resources, continue the below steps.
The following few more netsh commands may fix the problem. Ensure you enter the below commands in the command prompt, which was opened as Administrator.
netsh int tcp set heuristics disabled
netsh int tcp set global autotuninglevel=disabled
netsh int tcp set global rss=enabled
I’m sure one of the above commands will fix the issue and make your Windows 10 network faster.
5) If your wired network is fine, but you are having trouble in the wireless network only, change the power options to wake up the WiFi Adapter.
Right-click on the WiFi adapter and select Properties.
Click on ‘Configure’.
In the ‘Power Management’ tab, uncheck the below option.
This will prevent Windows 10 from turning off the WiFi adapter during sleep or hibernation. Because when the laptop resumes sleep, the WiFi adapter may not wake up and work properly. Avoiding this built-in feature may help with proper wireless network connectivity in Windows 10.
6) As discussed here, having a 3rd party antivirus and personal firewall software such as BitDefender can also disturb the network connectivity in Windows 10/8.1.
Suppose none of the above solutions works, and you have a dedicated Antivirus software with a firewall enabled. In this case, you can uninstall it or find a way to allow Internet connectivity and IP requests in the firewall settings. It might help.
The below video explains how to reset Wi-Fi settings to default in Windows 10.
The latest Windows (with updates) and drivers, especially for Wi-Fi and LAN adapters, may not create limited WiFi connectivity or Windows 10 not getting IP address issues.