How to resolve Common Networking Issues in Windows 7

Windows 7 includes many advancements to networking that simplify communication, access to information and resources whether in the home or workplace. Of course, networking can become a complex and daunting task depending how you approach it. Even the most simple projects can develop into frustrations. The Windows Team realized this and focused on incorporating tools that focused on making it easy to setup a home network.

Network IconHomeGroup, an exclusive feature to Windows 7, is one of the many new networking capabilities that makes it easy to network and share documents, pictures, videos and resources such as a printer with other Windows 7 PC’s with only a password.

In this article, we take a look at some of the ways we can fix common issues associated with networking, whether it’s connecting two computers or connecting to the Internet.

Tip 1: Fixing common networking connectivity issues.

This article references Windows Vista but also applies to Windows 7 also. To reset the TCP/IP stack go to this article and either click on “Fix it for me” or follow the instructions to fix it yourself.

How to Disable the IP Helper service:

1. Hold the Windows key and type R, enter “services.msc” (without the quotes) and press Enter

2. Scroll down to the IP Helper service, right click on it and select Properties

3. In the drop down box that says “Automatic” or “Manual”, set it to Disabled and then click on “Apply”

4. Then click on “Stop” to stop the service from running in the current session

5. Click OK to exit the dialog

How to Disable IPv6:

Try uninstalling IPv6 on all interfaces, removing any IPv6 virtual adapters, and resetting the TCP/IP stack. To remove IPv6, go into the properties for each network adapter and either uncheck the box next to the protocol “Internet Protocol version 6 (TCP/IPv6), that will disable it, or select it and click uninstall, which will remove it off the computer. Then go into device manager and remove any 4to6 adapters, WUN miniport adapters, or tunnel adapters.

NOTE: You should do this for each network connection.

How to Disable the DHCP Broadcast Flag:

Important: This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base – How to back up and restore the registry in Windows.

The Problem – Windows cannot obtain an IP address from certain routers or from certain non-Microsoft DHCP servers (background)

To resolve this issue, disable the DHCP BROADCAST flag. To do this, follow these steps:

Before making any changes, remember to backup your registry first. You do this by clicking File in the Registry Editor and click Export.

  1. Click Start, type regedit” in the Start Search box and then click regedit” in the Programs list.If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
  2. Locate and then click the following registry subkey:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesTcpipParametersInterfaces{GUID}”
  3. In this registry path, click the (GUID) subkey that corresponds to the network adapter that is connected to the network.
  4. 4. On the Edit menu, point to New, and then click DWORD (32-bit) Value.
  5. In the New Value #1 box, type DhcpConnEnableBcastFlagToggle” and then press ENTER.
  6. Right-click DhcpConnEnableBcastFlagToggle” and then click Modify.
  7. In the Value data box, type 1 and then click OK.
  8. Close Registry Editor.

By setting this registry key to 1, Windows will first try to obtain an IP address by using the BROADCAST flag in DHCP Discover packets. If that fails, it will try to obtain an IP address without using the BROADCAST flag in DHCP Discover packets.


Tip 2: Check your wireless settings.

Follow the steps mentioned below to check if your computer has a wireless network adapter.

  • Open Device Manager by clicking the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Security and then, under System, clicking Device Manager.‌

If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

  • Double-click Network adapters.
  • Look for a network adapter that includes “wireless” in the name.

If it is not set then follow the instructions for setting up a wireless network connection.


Tip 3: Another way to handle network connection issues is to release and renew your IP address.

You could also try ipconfig/release and renew command from the command prompt.

Follow the steps mentioned below.

  1. Click on start button.
  2. Type cmd in the start search box and press enter.
  3. Right click on the cmd” and run as administrator.
  4. Type the commands ipconfig /release” and ipconfig /renew” without the quotes.

Tip 4: Troubleshoot HomeGroup issues.

If you are unable to access a HomeGroup, try the following:

  • Check your Windows Firewall to make sure that HomeGroup and Network discovery are not blocked.
  • Make sure you enter the case sensitive password correctly.
  • Are both PC’s properly networked? Ethernet cable connected properly, are you connected to your wireless access point? You can check by clicking the Network icon in the Notification Area.
  • Ensure that your Network Location is set to ‘Home Network’. In Network and Sharing Center, under View your active Networks > click the link to your Network type (usually defaulted to as unidentified). When the ‘Set Network Location’ window appears, select ‘Home Network’ from the available options. After selecting this option, the Homegroup wizard should appear prompting you to join an available HomeGroup and requesting the type of information and resources you will be able to share and access.
  • If you encounter a problem with your HomeGroup Password, try changing it on the computer you setup HomeGroup on and try joining again.
  • If none of the above works, try running the HomeGroup Troubleshooter, In Network and Sharing Center under ‘Change your network settings’, click ‘Fix a network problem’ under ‘Network’, click HomeGroup troubleshooter and follow the wizard that appears. To learn more about Troubleshooters, click here

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