Broadband Connection Problems

We need to identify the problem be process of elimination.  Below please finda number of questions to ask yourself and things to investigate in order to find the cause of the problem.  Some are simple, some are not.

1) Check the following settings in IE, which stop it trying to use a phone line to connect, and force it to ask for settings from the router.   In IE, choose Tools>Internet Options>Connections.  Make sure "Never Dial a Connection" is chosen.  Then choose "LAN settings".  Check "automatically detect settings".

2) Will another browser work?  If you have Firefox or Opera installed, will they display a web page?  If another browser will work, the fault lies with IE.

3) Is the computer connected to the internet at all?  We can test this by pinging a known website.

Start>Run.  Type "cmd".  Press enter.  A command line interface window will open.  Type "ping".

It will tell you that it is sending packets to and waiting for a reply.  If it gets a reply, the computer is connected to the internet and IE is at fault.

4) Is there a green light on the router to indicate a DSL connection?  Is the Router switched on?  

This may seem obvious, but it catches lots of people out when the router is usually left on.

5) Does your router assign your computer an IP address?  I.e., are they talking and playing nice together?  Many routers will have DHCP (Dynamic Host Control Protocol) built into them, which means that when a new computer connects to the network, the computer is automatically assigned an IP address.  The computer will have to be set to want one, however.  

You can find out your IP address by going Start>Run.  Type "cmd".  Press enter.  A command line interface window will open.  Type "ipconfig/all".  The addressing information for the computer is then displayed.

To make sure that your computer is happy to accept an address, go to "My Network Places">Properties.  Then "Local Area Connection">Properties>TCP-IP properties.  Once the router has a DHCP function, make sure your TCP-IP settings have "Obtain an address automatically" checked.  Otherwise, you will have to set an IP address manually.  You can do that on this TCP-IP settings window.

6) If the computer not is connected to the internet, can it connect to the router?

Usually, the router will have an IP address, which will allow you connect to a browser based nterface.  This address will be in the installation instructions for the router, but will usually be,, or

If you type the router's address into the address bar of your browser, it should display an interface for administering the router.   The instructions that came with the router will tell you how to a) check that the DSL access settings are correct and b) how to check that the line is working.

7) Is it a new line?  Has it ever worked in the past?  Has the service been switched on yet?