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Chris L.
Chris L., Support Specialist
Category: Networking
Satisfied Customers: 5666
Experience:  Certified Networking expert with over 10 years experience.
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For no apparent reason internet access has stopped on my windows

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For no apparent reason internet access has stopped on my windows 7 Home premium. Wifi is only accessible with 'limited access' which actually results in no access so I tried plugging the ethernet cable in direct with the same result. All the diagnostics will say is there is a possible error with the Wireless Network Adapter. All other devices on the router are working fine. Access to the router seems OK, I can see the network and it says signal strength excellent. Any ideas? Thanks
Hello my name is ***** ***** certified computer professional with over 10 years experience. I will be happy to help you.

You most likely do have a network adapter issue, these can range from simple to horrible time consuming problems to fix.

First let me know exactly when the last time it worked was, doesn't need to be the exact time but the date would be helpful.

Also let me know if the make and model of computer.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Chris

Its an HP s5304uk Pentium R dual Core CPU E5300 @ 2.6 Ghz installed memory 3 gig

The last successful auto software updates were on the 12/9/2014

Whilst looking I got a message 'The program can't start because sqmapi.dll is missing from your computer' A clue?

Thanks for the information. When you receive a message that you have little or no connectivity it means that the computer is connected to the router but not the internet.

Don't be offended but I am going to mention some very simple things first which I assume you already tried but just in case you did not please do them.

1. Reboot the computer, open wireless connections, choose your wireless, see if it connects.
-- The point there is to just make sure the proper services started and you are not by accident connecting to the wrong network.

2. Try it is safe mode. Reboot the computer and as soon as it starts to boot keep tapping the F8 key on the keyboard. When you get to a screen with some options choose safe mode with networking. See if you can get online then. If you can it means you have a software issue so continue no further and reply to me for further instructions.

3. If you had no luck in safe mode do a system restore back to when the computer was working.
-- Open System Restore by clicking the Start button and browse to All Programs - Accessories - System Tools - System Restore

Follow the steps in the wizard to choose a restore point that is before when the problem started. If you only see one restore point make sure you choose to show more restore points on the bottom left of the box and choose the oldest one which is before the issue.

4. If it is still not working or system restore is not an option re-install the network card driver.
--You can get the drivers at the following page. You will need to download them on a working computer and transfer them over with a flash drive or external hard drive.

Just go to this link:

Choose your operating system at the top.

Next the available drivers will be shown below. Click on Original Drivers.

Download the one that says Original Realtek Networking Controller Driver

Transfer it to the computer and install.

Hopefully one of the above should resolve this. Please take a moment please rate my service by clicking on one of the smiley faces below. You can always return to this page to talk with me any time if you need more help.


Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Chris

I've rebooted and checked the network access. No joy.

Rebooted again but unable to force it into Safe mode.. F8 doesn't make any difference and have tried other options like esc, etc

Restored from earliest saved point available. Reported that it was successful but there is an error message saying that there is a file missing. Doesn't state which one.

Transferred the downloaded original realtek driver.

Now Internet access has stopped completely (can't access the router)

Click start and in the search box that opens above run type devmgmt.msc and press enter.

This will open device manager.

Locate your wireless card and also your wired card.

Right click both and choose uninstall.

After you have done that restart the computer and let me know the results.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Chris

Sorry for the delay had other stuff I had to do… I have located the wireless and wired cards and have uninstalled as per your instructions. I restarted and got 'Device driver was not successfully installed' with an error panel saying a file wasn't found. USB WLAN. Reatek… controller is ready to use.

Ok, did this machine ever have built in wireless or USB wireless?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No built in wireless...I have a USB wireless adapter

Does it work with the USB adapter?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No because I can;t see any networks… (I could earlier today) and the cpu is plugged directly into the modem via an ethernet cable.. I originally thought it was the USB adapter but I have tried two with the same results.

It's clear the internal network cards are not working so I want you to try to use the USB. When you plug that in does it install? Do you have the CD that came with it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes i have the cd am reinstalling drivers now...

Ok give that a go and let me know how you make out.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The network is now visible with 5 bar signs; Clicked connect and it connects to the router fine. However the connection to the internet is 'Limited Access'

This is how is was to begin with.

Very strange.

Do the following.

Basically I want to reset the network to make sure everything is being detected.

1. Unplug the power to the modem

2. Unplug the power to the router (if you have a modem/router combo, skip this)

3. Wait about 30 seconds and plug the modem back in (do not plug the router back in yet)

4. Give the modem a chance to fully boot up(around 1 minute) and plug the router back allowing it a minute or so to boot.

5. Restart your computer and try connecting to the wireless and getting online.

If it still doesnt work do the following on the laptop.

Manually set up the connection.

  1. Open Network and Sharing Center by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Control Panel. In the search box, type network, and then click Network and Sharing Center.

  2. Click Set up a new connection or network.

  3. Click Set up a new network, and then click Next.

Follow the steps

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

There's a panel asking me to Choose the wireless router or access point I want to configure but no devices are listed… It says it might take 90 secs but been sitting there for at least a couple of minutes

You chose set up new connection correct?

Also did you reset your network like I asked, unplug everything and plug it back in?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes and yes

You dont happen to be running any kind of firewalls are you?

Also did we try safe mode with networking? I though you had tried that?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes AVG I have disabled it now and will try again

I couldn't get it to go into safe mode… F8 didn't do it..

F8 always does it but it is tricky.

You need to keep tapping F8 before windows loads and safe mode with networking.

The point would be that if you could get online in safemode with networking we would know you have something blocking your internet connection.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

ok i'll give it another go..

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Got in with safe mode with networking

Network access still 'limited access'

Please click on Start, Run, and type cmd and click OK.

Once in command prompt type each of these commands.

netsh winsock reset , and press Enter

ipconfig /release , and press Enter

ipconfig /flushdns , and press Enter

netsh int ip reset netshlog.txt , and press Enter

After you have have done all of the commands restart your computer to see if the problem is resolved.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

When I enter ipconfig /release , and press Enter I get a message The Operation Failed as no adapter is in the state permissible for this operation

Ok, these problems are nightmares to fix. I am sure if I had the machine in my hands I could fix it eventually but for now I will have to opt out. This means that I will open the question up so other experts can review and see if they have further ideas.

Since we know it worked once we are likely looking at some network card driver issue OR an update an the router or something caused some incompatibility.

Sorry I tried the best i could with the time I had.

Pleae do not reply at this time otherwise it will lock the question back to me and I want others to see it. They will be able to review everything we tried already and you will receive an email when someone has an idea for you so no need to wait around.

Chris L., Support Specialist
Category: Networking
Satisfied Customers: 5666
Experience: Certified Networking expert with over 10 years experience.
Chris L. and other Networking Specialists are ready to help you

Hello! I am IT Miro.

Just to confirm, do you still see the "limited access" message when connecting using your USB wireless network adapter?

Also, does the same message appear when connecting using the Ethernet cable (wired connection)? Disable the wireless network connection and check.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Miro

Thanks for this… yes I still get limited access with the wi fi adapter… with an ethernet cable plugged in I can't even see the network. Given Chris and I spent probably more than 3 hours on this with no success I think I'll take it to a local repair shop - it should be easier if they can run diagnostics etc… thanks for your help anyway

Hi again!

If you are willing to spend about 30 minutes on this before taking it to a local repair shop, let me know since I have some quick suggestion for you to try.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks just seen your message I gave up and did a factory restore. Network works fine now but I have to reload a bunch of stuff thanks for your help but I'm done now

IT Miro