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XP machine won't acquire DHCP and ...

Posted on 2010-11-24
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I have a Windows XP machine connected to a wired ethernet.  This machine was working fine, acquiring IP address from DHCP server, etc.   ipconfig /all showed IP address, correct default gateway pointing to my router (correctly) and correct DHCP server address inside my LAN.   Then ever since some unrelated relocation of the computer behind desk, I have be unable to connect to LAN.   The machine sees the router and tries to obtain DHCP address but times-out.   Looking at ipconfig /all for the Ethernet adapter's information, I note that the gateway address is wrong as is the DHCP server's address.   Both point to an unknown IP address that's outside my LAN.    Is there any way to "reset" the information that's stored with the adapter as shown in ipconfig /all output?   I can compare non working machine to one that's on LAN that works fine and see that the one that's working has correct Gateway address, DHCP address, and a valid IP address on the LAN.  I don't know what might have happened to reset these to invalid address such that the machine can no longer find the DHCP server, obtain IP address, etc.
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Question by:HEC1152
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by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 34210128
If the IP address starts with 169...., that is the 'autoconfig' address that comes up when your computer can't connect to anything like a DHCP server.  Often means a disconnected or broken cable.
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by:HEC1152
ID: 34210224
Yup.  It's something like 169.254.189.12.   But it's not a broken cable.   I've used three testing each with a  RJ45 cable tester.     Also tried installing network card (additional to one integrated on mobo that was working but stopped).   Different cable to different router.   Both adapters showed same problem - no connection, etc.  So, I removed 2nd network adapter and went back to just the mobo connection and scratched my head.. BTW - while trying to connect it sees the 1Gb speed so the there is an electrical connection to the router.   It just can find the DHCP server via Gateway address (which is wrong), DHCP server, etc.    Really strange because this setup used to work.    Not sure what I might have done to cause this.
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by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 34210275
Can you set it to a fixed IP and set the gateway IP from the other computer?
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by:DonConsolio
ID: 34210277
Check for installed firewall/antivirus software - sometimes they get in the way.
Try disabling any installed 3rd party firewall on your XP machine.

Try a Linux boot CD like Knoppix to verify the hardware is working
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by:faizbaig
ID: 34210284
Try following via command prompt...

This will reset your IP and DNS
->  "ipconfig /release" followed by a "ipconfig /renew" on command prompt.

Netsh.exe can also be used to configure your NIC to automatically obtain an IP
-> netsh exec c:'location2.txt

Following link could be help too..
http://www.petri.co.il/configure_tcp_ip_from_cmd.htm
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by:HEC1152
ID: 34213756
Ok. Thanks for the help.   Here's what I've learned.   I can force the failing machine to connect via TCP/IP Properties where I can specify it's IP address, subnet mask, and the default gateway.   When I do that I see the connected icon indicating a connection to the network, BUT nothing on the LAN nor on external internet is pingable.   So, effectively while it thinks it's connected as far as indications go, it's really not seeing anything.   I have laptop connected to same switch via hard wire and can verify via ipconfig /'all that I'm using right gateway address (my router 192.168.0.1) and DNS server address (my DNS/DHCP machine 192.168.0.5).  It connects fine to internet and rest of internal LAN.  But when I ipconfig /all on the faulty machine I see correct IP address that I forced (192.168.0.198), Default gateway (192.168.0.1) but not able to see LAN.   I also had used netsh to force DHCP server prior to forcing IP address but that had no effect in that machine wasn't able to even connect.   I should note that I've running under MSConfig with all Microsoft services active but none of the other stuff that I normally have on.   Also, there's no firewall nor virus software on this machine (i.e. firewall if OFF).    So, I' really puzzeled.
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by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 34214470
You may have a corrupted Winsock.  Try the 'Fixit' from Microsoft on this page: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/811259
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by:HEC1152
ID: 34215057
I tried the "Fixit" which seemed to work fine insofar as messages.   But it had no effect on fixing the problem.   For reference, in case I'm missing something obvious, here's the output of the ipconfig /all command:

Windows IP Configuration

        Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : picard
        Primary Dns Suffix  . . . . . . . : tanbark.intranet
        Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Broadcast
        IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
        WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
        DNS Suffix Search List. . . . . . : tanbark.intranet

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection 6:

        Connection-specific DNS Suffix  . :
        Description . . . . . . . . . . . : NVIDIA nForce Networking Controller #2
        Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-15-58-3F-27-5A
        Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : No
        IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.198
        Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
        Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.1
        DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.5
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by:faizbaig
ID: 34215279

->It could be Ethernet \ Nic (Hardware issue).....Change the Ethernet PCI card and see..
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JRoyse earned 500 total points
ID: 34215286
Have you powered off any switches in between the computer and the router.  Powered off/on the router/DHCP server in question?  It is very common for consumer grade equipment to need to be powered off/on again.  That even goes for plain old dumb switches, I wouldn't have believed it, if I hadn't seen it myself.
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by:DonConsolio
ID: 34216644
- switch cables
- try a different PC/laptop on the same line
- try a Linux boot CD like Knoppix (http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html)
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by:NoodlesWIU
ID: 34220563
Its possible it could be a bad switchport, or cable.  If one of the pins does not have connectivity it may show its connected but not actually able to get an address or communicate on the LAN.

Try a different Cable, then try a different switch port, then try a different NIC.  Visibly inspect the pins though for each.
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by:HEC1152
ID: 34222033
Turned out the DNS/DHCP server had corrupted hard drive.   Wasn't obvious until powered off then on again.  Once that was corrected and DNS/DHCP server was rebooted and the machine was ipconfig'ed to re-acquire IP address, all seems to be working well.   I too never would have believed it as everything else on LAN seemed to be working fine until this particular machine started developing problems.
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