Computer drops out of Internet

By Marvin ยท 27 replies
Oct 6, 2006
  1. I don't know why but my computer keeps dropping out of the Internet, sometimes it lasts for hour sometimes for only minutes. It simply losses the connection. The only symptom I get is the blue box edges and toolbar flash to a cream colour for a second then go back to blue.

    I can't simply use the DSL connection to reconnect it doesn't respond so I have to reboot.
  2. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    Please provide some more details..
    How are you set up? router, wireless, modem, usb etc?
    Do you run a network with more than 1 PC?
    what is your provider? have you checked to see if they have some problem in their network?

    Do you have Norton I.Sec or any firewall installed?
  3. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    Setup - DSL modem (Zoom PPP)
    Not networked there is only my one computer, though configured to have more when needed (when my son is here with his laptop)
    Provider is BT Internet, no problems that I know of.
    No firewall.
  4. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Thats disturbing to know.

    Have you called your ISP to see if there is a known issue on their side? Its a possibility that there is something wrong with your modem or your ethernet port.

    How long has this issue been going on?
  5. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Have you scanned your system for spyware/viruses/ad-aware? I say this because you do not have a firewall. This could also be the reason why you are having problems
  6. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    My son says I'm fine and he's an IT security expert. I really don't know for sure

    The problem has been going on for several weeks now, I wont be able to get it to my son until late November and he can't work out what the problem is remotely. It started after a re-install of Windows XP. I think some of that installation was corrupt

    My computer is scanned regularly for spyware/viruses/ad-aware, I do not use Micro$oft Internet Explorer only Firefox.
  7. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Unistall and re-install firefox, just to eliminate a bad install.

    Go to device manager and check your ethernet card and router. Make sure there the drivers are loaded correctly. If they are not their will be a yellow Exclamation mark next to the device. Unistall any of these and reinstall.

    You can also check any conflicting hardware by using this command in the command prompt

  8. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Try this too. Its called power cycling

    Turn off your modem, unplug the power cable for 30 seconds, do the same thing to your router.

    Then turn them back on and let them cycle through for a minute before trying to use them.Then see if that works.
  9. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    I am also in the IT field, professionally.

    Good luck to your son
  10. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    Okay ...
    1) Uninstalled and reinstalled Firefox with fresh download from website .... a few minutes later got booted from Internet.

    2) Device manager says everything is okay and up to date

    3) Ran WINMSD - result
    There is no modem or router to turn off, the hardware is internal. The Zoom PCI ADSL Wan Adapter device is okay as is the ULi PCI Fast Ethernet Controller though I have changed the Power Management option on this so it does not now get turned off to save power. I don't know what effect that might have.

    My son ....well, bless him, he's very trying :)
  11. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Do you have another system to test the net on? It could be the port you are using is faulty.

    Check your cable for any kind of damage. How long is the cable? If its a really long cable the signal starts to lose strength, I believe it should be 6-8 ft at the most.
  12. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    I don't have another system.

    I will have to get down and take the (phone?) cable off to check it out ....
  13. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    I thought you said you have DSL. Any kind of DSL has a modem and a cat 5 cable.

    The phone line can run from the phone jack through a filter then the modem, then modem to cat 5 cable to the PC.
  14. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    The phone line goes from the jack straight into the back of the computer, there is nothing in between the two points
  15. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    Aside from knowing and observing the difference in size, your average person isn't going to notice the difference between RJ-45 and RJ-11 connectors. He's probably none the wiser and that's okay. :) It also appears Marvin has an internal ADSL modem, not an external one. So there may be no RJ-45 involved. It's probably RJ-11... Regular phone cable straight to the wall.

    ... For CAT-5 to a modem? 8ft is about 2.5% of the official maximum cable length. You might get some packet loss by the time you hit 300ft, but 8ft of cable isn't going to make your modem drop. Phoneline is similar and though I don't know officially, but I bet about the same applies.

    Marvin, what is this you are describing? Can you explain it more? It sounds like some sort of utility. Do you know what purpose it serves and the name of the application?

    Does rebooting solve the issue? Have you tried updating firmware or drivers for your PCI ADSL modem?

    When you become disconnected, does Windows notify you that a cable has been unplugged? Perhaps it tells you that you have limited or not Internet connectivity? Perhaps Windows tells you nothing?

    What programs do you use that access the Internet. Any P2P / Filesharing programs?

    What happens if you Start > Run > cmd.exe and type in: ipconfig /all when your connection drops? Copy and paste the output if you can. Try typing ipconfig /release and then ipconfig /renew to fix the problem. Did that correct your Internet problems?
  16. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    This is a dial up setup then.

    If you receive a phone call during while surfing you will be disconnected from the net.

    I do not use dial up, I HATE DIAL UP. I am not sure about the setup anymore. I last used dial up in 1997
  17. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    He has an internal ADSL modem, which he would indeed plug directly in via a phone cable.
  18. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    its an internal ADSL modem like rick is saying ie: like an internal dailup modem but for DSL connections, so DSL rules still apply (not disconnected when the phone rings etc), bypassing any need for the usual ethernet system (apart from the actual PC's ethernet for other purposes)

    smore.. please.. edit next time.. my scroll wheel is slowly disintegrating :giddy::D hehe

    So, marvin.. please tell us more about this blue icon if you can.. or post a screenshot (press "Print Screen" on the keyboard, next to F12 button, then paste it onto MS Paint and save etc)..

    After you try updating the firmware/drivers for the modem and the rest of the guy's suggestions, and problem still persits, you can try start rulling out your household phones etc..
    unplug all the phones/answering machines etc so you have the modem directly connected to the wall, without the filter, and see if its more stable now. If it is, then plug in things one by one untill you find it.

    Also, i'm curious what antivirus/internet security suite do you use?
  19. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    This is what happens when the computer drops off the internet. It looks like the "system" has a spasm for a second. I've no idea what causes it.

    No because it keeps happening day in day out. Yes the firmware and drivers have been updated for the PCI ADSL modem and checked from the Internet that the supplied drivers are the most up to date.

    No, no and yes. I do have a Local Area Connection setup but it is currently disconnected, it only gets used when my son connects his laptop (there is a little icon in the task bar telling me that .... it's always there and was before this problem started.

    Microsoft IE (very rarely used), Outlook Express, Mozilla Firefox and utorrent a p2p filesharing utility though only rarely. Oh and Skype but only recently

    ipconfig /all

    Windows IP configuration

    Host Name .... : Zaphod
    Primary Dns suffix .... :
    Node Type .... : Unknown
    IP Routing Enabled .... : No
    WINS proxy enabled .... : No

    Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection 2:

    Media State .... : Media disconnected
    Description .... : ULi PCI Fast Ethernet Controller
    Physical Address .... : 00-13-8F-A2-C4-38

    PPP adapter Zoom PPP DSL:

    Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
    Description .... : WAN (PPP/SLIP) Interface
    Physical Address .... : 00-53-45-00-00-00
    Dhcp Enabled .... : No
    IP Address .... :
    Subnet Mask .... :
    Default Gateway .... :

    ipconfig /release
    Windows IP Configuration

    No operation can be performed on Local Area Connection 2 while it has its media disconnected.

    ipconfig /renew
    Windows IP Configuration

    No operation can be performed on Local Area Connection 2 while it has its media disconnected.

    No it's not, honest. I can still use the phone when I'm online :)

    Get to the rest of the questions in a bit ....
  20. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    (1) Don't see how I can screen capture an event that lasts a brief moment. What blue icon are you on about? The "flash" from blue to white happens on the window edges of whatever is open and tool bar at the bottom of the screen.

    (2) We have one house telephone, it is on a seperarate line to the computer ... harks back to those halcyon days when I had two phone lines because I am online so much.

    (3) You know what curiosity did? But just for you I have Avast! and the firewall that comes with Windows XP Pro (?)
  21. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    When the internet "drops out" there is a short time interval before this "flash over" effect happens.

    The attached image shows that the tool bar at the bottom of the screen has change from blue to cream. The desktop icons on the RHS have altered positions slightly also.
  22. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    hehe.. yes.. curiosity killed the cat correct? although i am human (with the balance of a cat :D) Avast is ok.. windows firewall doesnt do much unfortunatley.. however free firewalls that are pretty decent are Kerio Personal and Zone Alarm Free, but more on that later..

    i see what you mean by cream bar.. that is strange, and one i haven't seen before.. i can only hypothesise that its got to do with something about a windows service gone wierd or a program that doesn't sit right with the rest of your PC.. rick?

    this part says that nothings going nowhere fast... possibly due to the adsl card not getting any addresses asigned to it or some network bug.. you can try disableing windows firewall to see if it helps?
  23. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    Okay, I've disabled the intenet firewall .... not very happy about doing that ....
  24. Marvin

    Marvin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 52

    That didn't help ....

    Installed Zone Alarm Pro on 15 day free trial .... not been booted since .... (famous last words)
  25. smore9648

    smore9648 TS Rookie Posts: 697

    Try this one.

    go to

    Choose Help&Support

    Choose this option
    Use Tools to view your computer information and diagnose problems

    Then choose network diagnostics

    then scan.

    Read anything that fails
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