Why is the Internet continuously connecting and disconnecting

Updated: 01/24/2018 by Computer Hope

If you are experiencing issues with the Internet on your computer, where it is connecting and disconnecting again and again, it could be due to several possible reasons. Below are some of the most common ways to try and fix the issue.

Tip: If you have another computer, smartphone, or tablet that can connect to the same Internet connection, use it to test if you have a connection issue or a computer issue. If all devices on your network have the same problem with the Internet it is likely an issue with the cable or DSL modem, network router, or ISP. If only one computer is disconnecting and reconnecting, it's likely a problem with the computer. Check for hardware failures in the computer or issues with the operating system, as these types of issues can result in Internet connection problems.

Cable or DSL Modem

Cable modemIf the cable modem is having trouble maintaining a steady connection, power cycling it might resolve the issue. First, it's recommended that you power off the computer.

Next, turn off the cable modem by disconnecting the power cord from the back of the modem. Leave it unplugged for at least ten seconds, then plug it back into the modem. It takes a few minutes for the cable modem to run through all its self-checks and reconnect to the Internet. Look for the Internet connectivity indicator light on the front of the modem. When it is illuminated, plug in your router and turn on your computer.

Note: If you did not unplug your router before unplugging the modem, other devices connected to the router may disconnect from the network. The restarting of the modem can result in a wireless router connection being reset as well.

Test the Internet connection on your computer and see if it is stable.

Wired/Wireless Router

Access pointSimilar to the steps above for resetting the cable modem, if you have not reset your router yet, turn off your computer and unplug the power cord from the router. Wait at least 10 seconds, then plug the power cord back into the router. Wait for the indicator lights on the front of the router to stop blinking. (Blinking lights indicate the router is completing self-checks and working to establish an Internet connection.) Then, turn on your computer.

Test the Internet connection on your computer and see if it is stable.

Internet Service Provider (ISP)

Your ISP may be a good resource to check with if your computer is still experiencing an unstable Internet connection. The ISP's technical support can run system checks and line checks to determine if there are any issues between them and your computer that might be causing the issue. They may also have other suggestions for fixing the connection.

If you're Internet is still not stable, before following any of the other steps below, we suggest contacting your ISP to make sure the problem is not on their end. If other devices on your network are working fine, continue with the steps below.

Network Card

It's possible the network card in your computer is experiencing issues with keeping a stable Internet connection. There are two things you can try to fix this.

Note: We only suggest the steps below if your network has other devices that are working with no problems.suggestions.

Reseat the network card

If you have a desktop computer, feel comfortable opening the computer, and your network card is a removable, turn off the computer and unplug the power cord, and remove the network card. Once out insert the network card back into the PCI slot, making sure it is firmly seated into the slot. Close the computer case, plug the power cord in, and turn it on.

Test the Internet connection on your computer and see if it is stable.

Reinstall network card drivers

If the Internet connection is still unstable, another fix to try is deleting the network card from your computer's Device Manager and letting Windows reinstall the card and its drivers. Reinstalling the network adapter can sometimes fix any device driver issues (corruption) and stabilize the network card's Internet connectivity.

After Windows has been rebooted and the device has been reinstalled, test the Internet connection on your computer and see if it is stable.

It is also recommended that you check the network card manufacturer's website and see if there are updated device drivers. If there are, download and install the updated drivers. After installing the updated drivers, restart the computer and test the Internet connection again to see if it is now stable.

Corrupt Windows system files

If system files in the Windows operating system become corrupted, it can sometimes cause Internet connectivity issues. If the connectivity issues start recently, you can try restoring Windows back to a previous point before the issue started to occur. Restoring to a previous point will replace the corrupt files with good, non-corrupt files. If corrupt files are the cause of the Internet connectivity issue, restoring should fix the issue.

Internet connection still unstable

If the Internet connection is still unstable after trying all the suggestions above, you may have a defective Cable/DSL modem, wired/wireless router, or network card. You may want to try getting a new modem, router, or network card to see if any of those devices are the cause of the problem and a new one resolves it.

Other potential causes

While the above reasons are the most common causes for an Internet connection to continuously connect and disconnect, there are a couple other possible causes for this issue. One possible cause is a virus or spyware infection. If the infection is severe enough, the Internet connection can be affected, causing it to be unstable or not work at all. You need to remove the virus or spyware from the computer in this case to stabilize the Internet connection.

Another possible cause of an unstable Internet connection is an antivirus program installed on the computer. Some antivirus programs have built-in security that can interfere with an Internet connection. Check the security configuration settings for the antivirus program to see what settings are enabled. Try disabling each setting to see if any of them cause the Internet connection to stabilize. If there is a setting causing an unstable connection, check with the antivirus program manufacturer to determine if those settings are absolutely necessary to keep your computer protected. If they are not necessary, leave those settings disabled so that your Internet connection remains stable.

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