Wireless showing DNS Errors - No Internet Access

Coolie SheppardSystems Engineer
Hopefully this article will help someone who's had the same issues I had.

I have a Dell Wireless 1390 WLAN Mini-Card and Windows 7, and for the past couple of days I was beyond frustrated because my wireless laptop was not able to access the Internet.  It was able to previously, but all of a sudden something happened that caused me not to be able to.

At first I thought it was my router so I rebooted it, even changed it back to it's default settings to no avail.  I was able to connect just fine to the router and get a strong signal, but I just couldn't get on to the Internet.  I took it to work thinking that I would need a new router but when I connected to the work router, the same thing happened again.  The thing is that just a couple days before I was actually able to connect to my work router.  

I ran the Windows diagnose program and it told me that I was having errors with the DNS. The DNS?  WHAT? Usually I get that error if I'm on a work network, not if it's just me in my house with one router.

But anyways.  I searched Google and tried repairing winsock, with all these commands, but nothing worked:

ipconfig /flushdns
                      ipconfig /release
                      ipconfig /renew
                      ipconfig /whatinthehell?

Open in new window

I did notice that I was able to ping by IP address, but not by name.

After more searching around, I finally found out what the problem was.  In my network connections settings, I had a Virtual adapter named:

Microsoft Virtual WiFI Miniport Adapter

I right clicked on it and disabled it, and within seconds I had Internet access again.  I never even noticed I had that virtual adapter, or should I say I didn't pay attention to it because I thought it was a part of VMWare that I have installed on my laptop.  And as you know, when you install VMWare it creates it own virtual adapters as well.

But that was it, after days of frustration it all came down to a simple click.  I do hope this helps someone else out who has or is facing this problem.

Good luck!
Coolie SheppardSystems Engineer

Comments (3)

Most Valuable Expert 2012

I had the EXACT same problem with a Windows Server that I had installed VMWare on. I installed it, everything was great, and then.... the users started complaining.

"I can't get on Exchange! I can't get on Exchange!"

So, I start pinging their computers. I can ping them just fine (NetBIOS was resolving). I can ping via IP address.

"Problem must be on there machine." I thought.

Nope. More and more users started complaining.

"What could POSSIBLY be wrong?" I feverishly wondered as the users started to crawl down my neck.

Finally, out of desperation, I started disabling everything in the network center one at a time until it worked. And there it was... that STUPID VMWare adapter.

This article will DEFINITELY help out someone out there. I am sure VMWare has broken someone else's box too.
Coolie SheppardSystems Engineer


The thing that was frustrating was that I had VMWare installed for about a year and never ran into this problem.  Somehow something changed that caused me to lose Internet connectivity.  As soon as I disabled that Virtual Adapter, everything went back to normal.  
Most Valuable Expert 2012

If I remember correctly, I had uninstalled and re-installed or did a repair or something, and that's what caused it.

Have a question about something in this article? You can receive help directly from the article author. Sign up for a free trial to get started.