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Server not found on only 1 of 2 machines


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#1 Cynthia Moore

Cynthia Moore

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 05:10 PM

I have two almost identical machines, one desktop and one laptop, both bought and installed at the same time, both running XP Pro and Office 2007, both connected to the same Comcast router and cable Internet.

 

This afternoon, the desktop could not connect to the network. Outlook cannot retrieve email and none of the browsers (Firefox, Explorer, or Chrome) can access google.com or amazon.com. The laptop is not having any problems at all.

 

I have rebooted the cable router and the computer 2-3 times. I have checked all of the cat5 cables. The cat5 connection on the back of the computer shows a flickering light as always. If I unplug the cat5 cable from the router, I get an error message on the computer saying that the local area network cable is unplugged. When I plug it back in, it says the local area net is connected at 100.0 MPS, just as on the laptop, which is connected to the same router.

 

I ran the Explorer diagnostics. It reports a number of errors that I do not understand and it recommends that I contact my ISP. But I find that hard to believe since the laptop is working just fine.

 

I'd be happy to upload the Explorer diagnostic report if there is a safe place to do that. I don't know if it has any personal information or any information that a hacker could make use of.

 

Thanks

 

 


Running Win 10 & Office 365.


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#2 Cynthia Moore

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 05:51 PM

While waiting on hold for Comcast, I tried swapping the cat5 cable to another modem port. No difference. Then I got a different cat5 cable and first connected it to the laptop. It worked just fine. Then I connected that same cat5 cable from the same modem port to the desktop. No joy. So it looks to me like the failure is in the connector (port) on the back of the desktop.

 

Now what? I do have WiFi. Can I get a USB WiFi receiver for that old computer? Any other solution? Call Dell?


Running Win 10 & Office 365.


#3 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 07:39 PM

I can think of three possibilities -

 

1  Download the latest LAN drivers you can find for this machine and install them. Go to the computer manufacturer's web-site and see what you can find for XP.

 

2  Virtually any plug-in USB wifi dongle should work for you so long as it supports the 'b', 'g' and 'n' variants.

 

3  You can get USB to ethernet adapters. You could use one of these to replace your existing ethernet socket, this link will show you what I mean even though it is a link to Amazon UK. You should be able to find similar adapters locally.

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ethernet-Network-Adapter-Converter-Connection/dp/B003Q85EEA

 

Chris Cosgrove



#4 Cynthia Moore

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 07:52 PM

Thanks, Chris.

 

I have ordered the Panda Wireless PAU06 300Mbps N USB Adapter. It's supposed to be here tomorrow. If they had their drone delivery service, I'd already have it! :-)

 

http://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JDVRCI0?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=od_aui_detailpages00

 

I should probably order one of the USB to Ethernet adapters as a backup in case the WiFi has problems.

 

Thanks so much.


Running Win 10 & Office 365.


#5 Cynthia Moore

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 10:46 AM

Now I am really confused. I have a local area network, which I think is handled by the Comcast cable modem/router. I thought that the Ethernet port on the desktop was bad, but I was just able to access a shared disk (folder) on that computer from the laptop. That access is via that Ethernet port. So it seems that the port is not bad.

 

So what, exactly, is the problem?

 

The desktop cannot access the Internet using the exact same cat5 cable that the laptop is able to use. But the laptop can access the shared folder over that same cable.


Running Win 10 & Office 365.


#6 Cynthia Moore

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 12:23 PM

As it turns out, the problem had nothing to do with hardware. Something changed the TCP/IP properties to use a static DNS server address. I changed it to obtain the address dynamically and everything is now working perfectly.


Running Win 10 & Office 365.


#7 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 05:38 PM

These settings do not normally change of their own accord. I would be inclined to run an AV and an anti-malware scan on every computer in your network, if only for your own peace of mind.

 

I have seen other topics of yours on this network, in fact I have replied to some of them, and I know that others have pointed out the potential perils of using an unsupported OS on-line. It is, as always, your decision but perhaps it is time to once again consider the pros and cons of a more up to date OS.

 

But glad you have found out what was causing the problem !

 

Chris Cosgrove






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