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DHCP Server unreachable/wireless connection out

Discussion in 'Networking' started by slanoue, Nov 18, 2005.

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  1. slanoue

    slanoue Thread Starter

    Oct 25, 2004
    I have had a network for almost two years with no problems, and for some reason my laptop has not been able to get online for about a week. It did this once before last year sometime, and I phoned Bellsouth; they said to shut down all the computers and then restart them, and that fixed the problem. It did not help this time.
    I have tried everything I can think of.

    My laptop is a Sony Viao with Windows 2000. I am using a Linksys router and wireless card with my Bellsouth Westell DSL modem. Someone else set up the network for me, but I don't have contact with that person any more to help me. I will probably phone Bellsouth again, but thought I'd try this, too. I tried Linksys' live chat but they kept getting disconnected.

    When I type in ipconfig /release it says it's already released. When I type in ipconfig /renew it hangs a long time and then tells me that the DHCP server is unreachable.

    I have three computers. One is this Dell I am currently typing on, with XP, and it is connected directly (wired) and works fine. Sometimes the connection goes out and I have to unplug the modem and plug it in again and then it works fine. That has always been true, though.

    I have another Dell, an old one with Windows 98, and it is wireless. We don't use that one very much because it's slow, but it has a wireless connection and sometimes it can't get online, either. It has troubles but sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. That's been for about the last month; it worked fine before that, just slow.

    The third one is the SONY Viao mentioned above and it has worked fine up until now. The linksys window says "you are connected to the access point but the internet cannot be found". Clicking on connect does not help. Rebooting does not help. Shutting off my other programs does not help.

    I do not have any firewalls and there is no security enabled on this wireless connection at all beyond antivirus and antispyware protection (because we live in an area where the houses are not close to each other, we have big lawns, etc. so I am not worried about anyone using my connection). I have not installed anything new, it just stopped working.

    When I look for the IP address, it says the IP address is
    I found a website that says that is not a valid IP address
    "If you see an IP address that begins with 169.254, you have the auto-configuration address, which is invalid."
    But that site did not give a fix that I can use because it is for their customers and says to phone them.

    How do I give it a valid IP address? I assume this will fix the problem.

    Thanks for any help!

    Suzanne Lanoue
  2. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Mar 23, 2005
    First Name:
    Pull out your Linksys manual, or find it online, to get the precise instructions for my suggestion:

    1. Login to the router via a wired computer.
    2. Save the router's settings.
    3. Make note of all the settings (WAN or Internet, LAN and Wireless) in case #2 doesn't work properly.
    4. Reset the router to factory conditions (hold the reset for 10 seconds or so).
    5. Restore the saved settings, or do them manually from your #3 notes.
    6. Cross your fingers and hope this simple "refresh" cures the problem.
  3. slanoue

    slanoue Thread Starter

    Oct 25, 2004
    Thanks, I found the answer elsewhere online last night...I just reset it to a static IP. I used the router settings for my PC and just changed the IP address to one number higher.
    I appreciate the help, though.
  4. Couriant

    Couriant Trusted Advisor

    Mar 26, 2002
    First Name:
    Just an FYI, the 169.254.x.x is a valid address, just that you won't be able to access the internet with it. Say for example your network suddenly cannot get an IP address from your designated DHCP server. Windows will give you an Automatic Private IP Address (APIPA). This IP address will allow your network to continue to be able to talk to each other, however any internet access would be disabled until the DHCP server is running normally.

    I hope they didn't confused you by saying the 169.254.x.x is an invalid address.
  5. jmwills


    Sep 28, 2005
    Did you consider the Network card may be bad?
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