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IE shows no page but hourglass

A friend of mine complains he cannot access the internet. I click on his IE and see it show no page but hourglass. What should we do?
Thanks.
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I should have added that you should be able to find Internet Explorer with no add-ins in your Systems folder (under Acceessories). Once you have determined you have an Internet connection (or not), run IE with no add-ins to see if an add-in is causing your issue. .. Thinkpads_User
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Slemmesmi, how can we run the said fix without internet connection?
So my first post said try to ping.

Now you say no internet connection, so what happened with the ping? What IP address does your computer have (if any) and what answer did the ping give?

You do not likely have an IE problem if you do not have an internet connection, so let us start there.  
... Thinkpads_User
Dear ksfok,

When you on the above URL click "Run now", instead of continuing and run the Mats_Run.ieperformance.exe from download.microsoft.com, you can simply choose to save Mats_Run.ieperformance.exe to a local disk, or eventually a USB drive and then later run/excute the downloaded Mats_Run.ieperformance.exe on the computer having the problem.

Alternately, you can fix the problem manually by following the simple steps (still on the above URL) under the "Let me fix it myself" section.

Kind regards,
Soren
ksfok - Is there some reason why you are not answering posts here. You say "no internet". What do you mean and please respond to my internet related posts.  ... Thinkpads_User
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ASKER

I cannot go to URL recommended by Slemmesmi, because IE is not connecting. I have to make sure the DSL or whatever is working first?
ksfok  - it is unrealistic to try to use IE to debug connections. If no internet, you get precisely the symptom you described first.

Yes, you need to determine that internet is working first.

Next time you post, please tell us if you have one computer or more than one computer plus a router connected to your DSL. Your DSL modem may be combined with a router and have 4 ethernet ports on it. But I am guessing, so please tell us what you have.

Between now and then, on the computer, open a command prompt (cmd.exe normally) so that a black window opens up.

At the prompt, type ipconfig and then enter. What IP address do you get?

While the text window remains open, type ping google.com and then enter. What answer do you get?

This will help us understand where the problem is.

... Thinkpads_User
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ASKER

What do "ipconfig" and "ping google.com" do? Please explain?
ksfok - This is somewhat OS dependent.

Start -> Run and enter CMD in the entry box -> OK. This opens a black text window.

In this window, type ipconfig and press enter. You will get a display like this:
------------------------------------------------------
Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation.  All rights reserved.

C:\Users\userid>ipconfig

Windows IP Configuration

Wireless LAN adapter Wireless Network Connection:

   Connection-specific DNS Suffix  . : linksys.com
   Link-local IPv6 Address . . . . . : fe80::d1ba:82e3:df80:32f6%28
   IPv4 Address. . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.103
   Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
   Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.1
--------------------------------------
In this example, the IP address is 192.168.1.103. I want to know what you get from this command.

Now, the text window should still be open.

Type  ping google.com and press enter. You will get a display like this:
-------------------------------------------
C:\Users\userid>ping google.com

Pinging google.com [74.125.226.80] with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 74.125.226.80: bytes=32 time=35ms TTL=56
Reply from 74.125.226.80: bytes=32 time=20ms TTL=56
Reply from 74.125.226.80: bytes=32 time=11ms TTL=56
Reply from 74.125.226.80: bytes=32 time=12ms TTL=56

Ping statistics for 74.125.226.80:
    Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
    Minimum = 11ms, Maximum = 35ms, Average = 19ms
----------------------------------------------
All the bafflegab in the second output says is that I got a reply from google.com and therefore I have an internet connection.

We want to see if you have an internet connection that works. This comes before determining if there is a browser issue.

Let me know.   ... Thinkpads_User
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ASKER

My friend called his DSL provider and got help over the phone, but said the connection is now  established only part of the the day, e.g. it's up in the morning and down in the evening. Maybe virus infection or something?

Why do I also periodically experience brief disconnections (lasting from seconds to minutes) with "web page cannot be displayed"? I am using AT&T DSL service at home. That also happens when I am in a public library.
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Thank you. I was pleased to assist and I hope all worked out for you. ... Thinkpads_User