6 Ways to Fix Network Adapter Not Working in Windows
Aug 11, 2023
Can't connect to the internet on your Windows PC? Here are some tips to fix your network adapter that can help.
A network adapter is a vital component on your Windows PC that allows you to connect to the internet using both wired and wireless connections. If it stops working for any reason, it can disrupt your ability to use the internet or connect to other devices on your network.
If you are experiencing the same issue, don't worry. This guide contains some useful troubleshooting tips that should get the network adapter working on your Windows 10 or 11 PC.
Device Manager on Windows makes it easy to view, manage, and update various hardware devices connected to your system. You can use it to examine the status of your network adapter and check if it is encountering any particular errors.
Here's how you can go about checking the status of your network adapter on Windows.
If you see an error under Device status, write it down and then look for solutions to fix that particular error first.
Is the network adapter entry missing from the Device Manager? If so, you can ask Windows to scan your system's hardware again. To do so, click the Action menu in the Device Manager window and select Scan for hardware changes.
Wait for the Device Manager window to detect the network adapter, and then check its status using the steps mentioned above.
Your Windows computer comes equipped with a variety of troubleshooters designed to automatically identify and resolve issues. In this case, you can run the Network Adapter troubleshooter to scan your system for any irregularities and fix them.
To run the network adapter troubleshooter, use these steps:
Wait for the troubleshooter to scan your PC and fix any problems. After that, check if the network adapter works fine.
This may seem too simple, but disabling and re-enabling the network adapter can help. If it’s just a temporary glitch that’s causing the network adapter to malfunction, this should do the trick.
To disable and re-enable the network adapter on Windows, use these steps:
The Device Manager window will refresh and your network adapter should start working after that.
The network adapter driver installed on your computer facilitates communication between Windows and your network hardware. If this driver is outdated or malfunctioning, Windows may have difficulty establishing network connections. You can try updating the network adapter driver to see if that gets things moving again.
Follow these steps to update the network adapter driver on Windows.
Windows will now check if any updates are available for your drivers and download them.
If the problem persists even after updating the network adapter driver, it is likely that the driver is corrupted. In that case, you will need to uninstall the driver from your PC.
If you need help with that, check out how to uninstall drivers in Windows. After removing the driver, restart your PC, and Windows will automatically reinstall the missing driver during boot.
Winsock (short for Windows Sockets) is a programming interface that allows your apps and programs to communicate with network protocols and services. If there’s an issue with this program, you could experience various network-related problems, including the one discussed here.
You can try resetting the Winsock data on your PC to see if that restores normalcy. To do so, use these steps:
Restart your PC after running the above command to complete the reset process. After that, the network adapter should work as before on your Windows computer.
If you are here, it’s safe to assume that none of the above tips have helped. In that case, you can try some generic fixes to see if they work.
Without a clear indication of what’s wrong, troubleshooting your network adapter can be tricky. However, following the solutions listed above should make the process a little easier.
Once the network adapter starts working again, consider making some minor tweaks to improve your PC’s internet connection speed.
Pankil is a freelance tech writer from India who has been writing about Windows since 2021. As a long-time Windows user, he has extensive knowledge of the ins and outs of the operating system and specializes in creating how-tos and troubleshooting guides. With a focus on practical advice and real-world solutions, Pankil aims to make technology accessible and user-friendly for everyone.Start iconWin + XDevice ManagerNetwork adaptersPropertiesGeneralDevice statusDevice statusActionScan for hardware changesWin + ISystemTroubleshootOther troubleshootersRunNetwork AdapterWin + Sdevice managerNetwork adaptersDisable deviceYesEnable deviceWin + Rdevmgmt.mscEnterNetwork adaptersUpdate driverSearch automatically for driversSearch for updated drivers on Windows UpdateWin + SWindows PowerShellRun as administratorYesEnterInstall Windows Updates:Turn Off VPN:Reset Network Settings:Perform a System Restore: