WiFi Connected But No Internet (Causes & Easy Fixes)

WiFi Connected But No Internet

When it comes to issues regarding internet connectivity, one of two things may happen to you: you may have a connection but you cannot access the internet or your computer indicates that you do not have internet connectivity at all.

If you are using a wireless connection, then you may see a ‘WiFi connected but no internet connection’ error message pop up on your devices.

This indicates that you have a connection to your network, but it cannot access the internet.

This issue may happen only on one device connected to your network or on all devices connected to the same network.

Finding the underlying issue will enable you to come up with the right solution.

Some of the causes of the “connected without Internet issue” are faulty routers, outdated drivers or firmware, internet outages, faulty WiFi adapters, or a wrongly configured DNS server. 

Luckily, there are a few simple ways you can solve this issue, such as using the Window Network Troubleshooter, disabling the VPN or restarting your router.

Continue reading to find out how you can solve the problem of being connected to WiFi but no internet access.

Meaning of ‘WiFi Connected but No Internet’ Error Message

If your device is showing the error message ‘WiFi connected but no internet’, it means that it can establish a connection to your local network, normally to your modem or router.

However, it cannot communicate with other systems on the internet such as servers or websites.

Causes of ‘WiFi Connected but No Internet’ Error Message

On your Windows computer, the ‘WiFi connected but no internet’ error is characterized by a tiny warning triangle that is yellow with a black exclamation mark while on iPhone and Android devices, it is characterized by a black exclamation mark.

Then, it is followed by any of the error messages below:

  • No internet connection.
  • WiFi has no internet access.
  • Connected, no internet access.
  • WiFi connected but no internet.

When any of the above messages appear on your device, it means that it is connected to your local network but access to the internet is blocked by something.

Some of the common reasons for internet connectivity problems are:

  • The WiFi adapter on your computer is faulty.
  • The service is down on your provider’s end.
  • Incorrect IP address.
  • Security software is stopping access.
  • The wireless drivers are outdated.
  • DNS servers have the wrong configuration.
  • Corrupted DNS cache.
  • Faulty router. Your computer has an outdated wireless mode.

Do You Have No Internet Access to The Entire Network or Only On One Device?

WiFi Connection

To solve the problem of ‘WiFi connected but no internet’, you need to find out whether this error is affecting the whole network or one device.

This will let you know which steps to take to resolve the issue.

A. One computer has a WiFi connection but no internet

If your computer is the only device that does not have an internet connection, even if it is connected to WiFi, there is likely a problem with your IP address, the settings are misconfigured, the WiFi adapter or the drivers are faulty, or your DNS has issues.

Try using another mobile device or computer to connect to the same WiFi network. If you can browse the internet or open websites on other devices, then be sure that the problem is isolated to only your computer.

B. All devices have a WiFi Connection but no internet

If all the devices connected to your network show the ‘WiFi connected but no internet’ error, it means that the issue lies with your modem or router.

Alternatively, the service from your internet provider may be down.

Try connecting your devices to another WiFi network if you have one. If your devices get access to the internet on this network, then it shows that your network is the problem and not any of your devices.

Solutions For ‘Connected Without Internet Error’ On One Device

WiFi Connected But No Internet Connection Fixes

The methods below are the solutions to resolving the ‘WiFi connected but no internet device’ error on a single device:

1. Using Window Network Troubleshooter

The first thing that you need to do when you see this error is use the built-in Windows Network Troubleshooter.

It has become a great tool for fixing your network connection problems and this may resolve the issue right away. The steps to run a network troubleshooter are:

  • On the search bar of your computer, type ‘settings’.
  • Then tap on the ‘network & internet’ option.
  • In the menu on the left-hand side, tap on the ‘status’ option.
  • Select the ‘network troubleshooter’ option.
  • Finally, ‘run it’ to resolve the issue.

If this does not work, try the next step.

2. Disable VPN

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are the best tools for improving your internet security. Additionally, a VPN helps you when using services with regional differences by allowing you to appear browsing from another country.

For example, streaming services with different content libraries depending on your country.

VPN provides an additional step when connecting to the internet and if the VPN provider has an outage or technical issue, you will not have access to the internet even if you are connected to WiFi.

Therefore, if you are using VPN, you should disable it using the following steps:

  • Type ‘Settings’ on the search bar of your Windows and open it.
  • Tap on the ‘Network & Settings’ option.
  • Choose ‘VPN’ on the menu.
  • Tap on the VPN connection that you are using and click the ‘Disconnect’ button.
  • Now check if you have internet access.

If the above steps do not solve the issue, do not re-enable the VPN just yet as you want to find the real cause first. Proceed to the next step and keep the VPN disabled.

3. Disable Proxy

The purpose of proxy servers is to act as gateways between the internet and your device, meaning that all the network traffic must pass through the proxy server.

Therefore, if the proxy fails you will experience some connection problems ranging from slow to no internet at all.

To disable the proxy on your Windows, follow the steps below:

  • Type ‘Settings’ on the search bar.
  • Select ‘Network & Internet’ on the new window that opens.
  • On the menu, click on ‘Proxy’.
  • Scroll down to the ‘Manual proxy setup’ section and ensure that the ‘Use a proxy serve’ toggle is off.

4. Check Time Synchronization

It may be simple to open a website in your browser but for this to happen a long chain of actions needs to be completed by other systems on the internet and your computer.

To help keep the order of processes there is a timestamp for every communication event between the internet and your computer.

If the internal time in your computer is not the same as the internet time, that will cause lots of problems which will leave you with no internet.

Follow the steps below to set your time to automatic on Windows:

  • Right-click on the clock which is at the bottom right of the task bar.
  • Choose ‘Adjust date/time’ from the menu that opens.
  • Make sure that the ‘Set the time zone automatically’ and ‘Set the time automatically’ are ON.
  • Tap on the ‘Sync now’.
  • Check if now have access to the internet.

Below are the steps for setting the date and time automatically on an Android smartphone:

  • Open the ‘Settings’ app.
  • Choose the ‘System’ option.
  • Then tap on ‘Date & Time’ on the screen.
  • Ensure that the ‘Automatic time zone’ and ‘Automatic date & time’ options are ON.

5. Disable Fast Startup

Your connection may be interfered with if you are using the Fast Startup feature to power on and shut down the computer quickly.

Do the following to disable this feature:

  • Press the ‘Windows Key + R’ to open the ‘Run dialogue box’. Alternatively, you can type ‘run’ on the search bar and open the result.
  • Type ‘powercfg.cpl’ and press okay. This will open the ‘power options’ menu.
  • Select the ‘Choose what power buttons do’ option on the left-hand side.
  • Click on ‘Change settings currently unavailable’ which is under the ‘define’ section.
  • You will see an option for a fast startup under the ‘shutdown settings’.
  • Uncheck the fast startup option then click save.
  • Finally restart your computer and check whether you have access to the internet.

If you do not have access, continue to the next step.

6. Flush the Domain Name System (DNS) Cache

If your DNS gets corrupted by technical glitches or malicious code, there can be a mismatch in your IP address. This will stop you from having internet access even if you are connected to WiFi.

Do the following to flush the DNS:

  • Type ‘command prompt’ in the search bar of your computer and right-click.
  • Run the ‘Command Prompt app as an administrator’.
  • Now type the following and press Enter after each command:
  1. Ipconfig/flushdns
  2. Ipconfig/release
  3. Ipconfig/renew
  • When this is completed, close the ‘Command Prompt window’ and check whether you have a connection.

Continue to the next step if there is no internet connection.

7. Update Your Network Adapter Driver

If you update your computer regularly but the hardware drivers are not updated, there will be a communication error between the two because the network adapter driver is outdated.

You should note that this step will direct Windows to update your WiFi network adapter, therefore, it will require an active internet connection to find the latest version and download it.

Use an Ethernet cable to connect your computer to the modem or router to ensure that you are connected to the internet before proceeding.

Below are the steps to update your WiFi driver:

  • Type ‘device manager’ into the search bar and open the result.
  • In the list that appears, find ‘Network adapters’ and expand the section.
  • In the expanded list, find your WiFi adapter and right-click on it.
  • Select the ‘Update driver’ option.

You will know which adapter is for your WiFi as it will either have a wireless mode listed like 802.11 or will say outright it is a wireless connection.

If the driver cannot be updated automatically by your computer, you should install it manually, and you also need internet for this.

8. Check Your IP Address Validity

An incorrect IP address may be blocking your computer from accessing the internet and this may be due to a static address set in Windows settings.

Therefore, you should instruct Windows to obtain the IP address automatically through the steps below:

  • Right-click the network icon which is located on the bottom right-hand corner of the taskbar and choose the ‘Open Network & Internet Settings’ option.
  • Tap on ‘Change Adapter Options’ then double-click on your network.
  • Select ‘Properties’ on the window that opens then double click on ‘Internet Protocol Version 4’.
  • Make sure that both the DNS server address and IP address are set to be obtained automatically, then press OK and try connecting to the internet again.

9. Change Your DNS Server Address

Mostly, the DNS server settings operate well, but it may be down at the moment. When this outage happens, you may still connect to the WiFi, but you will not have access to the internet.

To root out this problem, use Windows to change the DNS server address to a trusted public provider like Cloudflare or Google by following the steps below:

  • Open the ‘Run’ menu by pressing down the ‘Windows Key + R’.
  • Type ‘control/nameMicrosoft.NetworkAnd SharingCenter’ and then press OK.
  • Click ‘Change Adapter Settings’ which is in the top-left corner of the window that comes up.
  • Right-click on ‘WiFi’ and then choose ‘Properties’.
  • Choose ‘Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)’ in the new window then tap on the ‘Properties’ button below.
  • A window will appear showing how your DNS and IP address are obtained. Set it to ‘Use the Following DNS Server Address’ at the bottom.
  • Enter ‘8.8.8.8’ for the Preferred DNS server and enter’8.8.4.4’ for the Alternate DNS server, then press OK.

10. Run a Malware Scan

When your computer starts behaving unexpectedly, including experiencing issues with internet access, it is crucial to regain full control over it and protect your data.

Running a comprehensive malware scan is a recommended practice in such situations.

Fortunately, modern Windows operating systems are equipped with a robust antivirus tool called Windows Defender, which can effectively combat malicious applications.

Here is how to run a full malware scan with Windows Defender:

  • Begin by typing “Windows Security” in the search bar of your Windows operating system and open the app.
  • In the main interface of the opened window, locate and click on “Virus & threat protection.”
  • On the subsequent screen, select “Scan options.”
  • Choose the “Full scan” option and then click the “Scan Now” button.

Additionally, if you have an antimalware tool from a third party installed, it is advisable to utilize it to perform an additional full scan.

Examine the results of the scan, and if any malware is detected and removed from your system, attempt to access the internet once again.

11. Temporarily Disable Your Antivirus or Firewall

In certain cases, internet access issues may not be caused by malware, but rather by legitimate computer applications such as firewalls or antivirus software.

To troubleshoot this, you can try temporarily disabling the software.

Here are the steps to temporarily disable Windows Defender Firewall:

  1. Press the Windows key on your keyboard.
  2. Type “Control Panel” in the Windows search box and open the application.
  3. Click on “System and Security.”
  4. In the new window, select “Windows Defender Firewall.”
  5. On the left side of the window, click on “Turn Windows Defender Firewall on or off.”
  6. Choose to turn off Windows Defender Firewall for the network that is experiencing the issue.
  7. Likewise, repeat the same process for any other antivirus or firewall software installed on your computer.

By following these steps and disabling the relevant software, you can determine if they are causing the internet access problem.

If you have successfully regained internet access by temporarily disabling your security applications, it indicates that one of those apps has a setting or configuration that is blocking your internet connection.

You should carefully review the configuration of your firewalls and antivirus applications to identify the specific setting causing the issue.

Make the necessary changes in the settings and then re-enable the security tools. It is crucial not to permanently disable your security tools as they play a vital role in protecting your computer.

However, if you have identified the application causing the internet connection issue but are unable to determine the cause or resolve the problem, your best course of action is to consider replacing that application with a similar tool from a different vendor.

This can help ensure that you have a functional and reliable security solution without compromising your internet access.

Solutions For ‘WiFi Connected but No Internet’ On the Entire Network

If the issue is on the entire network, the following are some of the solutions that you can implement:

1. Check For Outages on Your ISP’s End

If all your devices are connected to your wireless network but cannot access the internet, it could be due to an outage with your service provider.

To check this, you can use cellular data to visit your internet service provider’s website or social media pages or contact them directly.

Alternatively, websites like DownDetector can provide information on service outages and user reports.

If your cellular data allows you to get online, it can help determine if the issue is widespread or specific to your network.

If your service provider hasn’t reported an outage, check your router for potential issues and proceed with troubleshooting if needed.

2. Eliminate Any WiFi Range Extenders

Complicated WiFi network setups, especially with devices like WiFi repeaters and extenders, can cause issues, including stability and connection problems.

If you face a network problem with WiFi connected but no internet access, simplify your setup by removing extra components like switches, repeaters, and extenders.

Instead, test your internet connection with your modem and primary WiFi router.

Start by connecting your device directly to the primary WiFi router and check if you have internet access. If you regain internet access in this setup, it suggests that the issue lies with one of the additional devices that were removed.

Begin adding back these components one at a time and test the internet access each time. When your internet access drops again, you have identified the faulty device.

It may be a configuration issue that can be resolved, but if the problem persists, you might need to consider replacing that hardware component.

However, if you are still unable to access the internet even when connected directly to the primary router, you should focus on troubleshooting the router itself.

You should address any issues with the router to restore internet connectivity.

3. Reboot Your Modem and Router

A simple yet effective step to troubleshoot internet connection issues is to power cycle your router and modem. Here’s how you can do it:

If you only have a router:

  • Power down the router by turning it off.
  • Unplug the router from the wall outlet.
  • Wait for approximately 3 minutes.
  • Plug the router back into the wall outlet.
  • Turn on the router.

If you have both a router and modem:

  • Power down both the router and modem.
  • Unplug both devices from their respective power sources.
  • Plug the modem back in first.
  • After waiting for about 30 seconds, plug in the router.
  • Wait for a few minutes to allow the devices to finish powering up.

Once the router and modem have fully powered up (typically within 5-10 minutes), test your devices again to check if the internet connection issue has been resolved.

Power cycling can help refresh the network connections and resolve temporary glitches that may be causing the problem.

4. Check MAC Address Filtering in Your Router Settings

MAC addresses are unique identifiers used to control network access for devices. Routers often have a feature to filter device access based on MAC addresses.

To troubleshoot, check if this feature is enabled and the mode it is set to (allow or deny). Allow mode permits only the listed MAC addresses to connect, while deny mode blocks the listed devices.

Access your router’s management console via a web browser using the correct IP address. The default IP address is typically located on the router or its documentation.

If you can’t find it, retrieve it using the Command Prompt. Open Command Prompt, type “ipconfig,” and look for the “Default Gateway” under the connected network adapter.

Enter the router’s IP address in the browser’s address bar, access the management console, and navigate to the MAC address filtering settings. Disable the feature if it’s enabled. Save the changes and exit.

By following these steps, you can access the router’s management console, retrieve the IP address if necessary, and disable MAC address filtering if it’s causing network access issues.

  • Press the Windows key and type “cmd” into the search field.
  • Right-click on the Command Prompt app and select “Run as administrator.”
  • In the Command Prompt window, type the command “ipconfig” and press Enter.
  • Locate the Default Gateway IP Address, which will be in the format of 192.168.X.X.
  • Open your preferred web browser and enter the Default Gateway IP Address in the address bar.

This will open your router’s management console.

You will likely need to log in with your router’s credentials, which are different from your WiFi username and password.

You can find these credentials on the back of your router or try using “admin” if you haven’t changed them before.

Once you have accessed the router settings, ensure that the MAC address filtering feature is disabled or that no specific filtering rule is denying internet access to your device.

5. Update Your Router Firmware

Updating router firmware is crucial to avoid network issues. Although the specific steps vary by brand, here is a general guide:

  • Find your router’s model on the box.
  • Visit the manufacturer’s website and locate and download the latest firmware for your model.
  • Access the router’s management console.
  • Look for the Firmware update option (location varies).
  • Choose the downloaded firmware file and initiate the update.
  • Allow the process to complete uninterrupted. Remember to ensure a stable power supply and avoid interrupting the update to prevent device damage. Exercise caution, as updating firmware carries inherent risks.

6. Check Your Mobile Data When Using a Hotspot

To resolve the issue of a connection but no internet hotspot on Android while sharing WiFi, follow these steps to check your mobile data settings:

  • Open the Settings app on your Android device (represented by a cogwheel icon).
  • Navigate to the “WiFi & internet” section.
  • Select “SIM & network” from the options.
  • Look for the “Cellular data” section and ensure that the Mobile data toggle is switched ON.
  • By verifying that your mobile data is enabled, you can ensure that your Android device can provide internet access through the hotspot.

7. Reset Your Entire Network

If you’re still encountering the “WiFi-connected without internet” error, a network reset may be necessary to resolve the issue.

However, please note that performing a network reset will restore your settings to their default state and remove all network adapters, requiring you to set up all things again, including reconnecting to your local network and updating default network adapters.

Make sure you have your internet network’s password before proceeding.

To reset your network, follow these steps:

  • Type “settings” into your computer’s search bar.
  • Click on the “Network & internet” option.
  • Select the “Status” option in the left-hand menu.
  • Scroll down to the “Network troubleshooter” section.
  • Look for the “Network reset” option.
  • Click on it and follow the on-screen instructions.
  • When the network reset is complete, click on your internet’s taskbar icon to reconnect to the internet. View the list of available networks, select yours, and establish a new connection.

FAQ

Why Is The WiFi Working On One Device But Not Another? 

In most cases, this should be a momentary issue that will quickly resolve itself.

However if it persists, the issue may be caused by a weak network connection on the device, restricted network settings, incorrect WiFi password, or obstacles such as a thick phone case.

Also, your internet plan may be too slow or outdated.

How Do I Fix “WiFi Connected But No Internet” Error Message

First, restart your router as this will remove any bugs and allow you to reacquire an IP address. If you have a separate modem, you should also reboot the modem.

Once both devices have rebooted, the issue should be resolved.

Other steps you can try include using the Network Troubleshooter on your client device or changing the WiFi frequency bands (e.g. 5 GHz to 2.4 GHz).

Final Words

In summary, if you’re experiencing the “WiFi connected but no internet” issue, it may stem from various causes, such as faulty routers, outdated drivers, or network-wide problems.

For a single device, troubleshoot using tools like the Network Troubleshooter or updating drivers.

If the issue affects the entire network, consider rebooting your modem and router, checking for ISP outages, or updating router firmware.

If, despite trying all the troubleshooting steps mentioned above, you are unable to resolve the ‘connected without internet‘ issue, contact your ISP, and they will send a technician to assist you.

Daniele Besana

Daniele Besana

Daniele is a freelancer consultant with 15 years of experience in network security, customer support, Linux and Salsa. He worked for Juniper Networks in Netherlands, providing support and consultancy on security projects across Europe and Middle-East.

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