Solution: Connected to Internet but Cannot Browse Websites

Few days ago, a friend brought his laptop to me to troubleshoot a weird problem. His laptop (Windows XP SP2) was connected to Internet, but could not surf any website.

Every installed software also could not access to Internet, such as antivirus online update, windows live messenger, etc. However, the PING command works on Command Prompt!

At first, I suspected one or more related windows services were turned off, but they looked fine after checking.

No clue. I searched Internet for the solution (using my Mac). After reading some forum posts by others, I suspected the problem was caused by corrupted Winsock2, which is used by windows network software to access network services.

Finally, I found the tutorial to repair Winsock2 corruption at Microsoft Support. If you are using Windows XP Service Pack 2, it only takes a command to report Winsock2:

type netsh winsock reset at the command prompt

After that, restart your computer and Winsock2 shall be fixed. It works for my friend’s laptop and he looked at me amazingly. ;)

For Windows XP without SP2, it takes more steps to repair Winsock2. You can get the step-by-step instruction on the Microsoft Support.

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32 Responses to Solution: Connected to Internet but Cannot Browse Websites

  1. goalcentre.com January 5, 2008 at 12:01 pm #

    I have that problem occasionally. How do you handle this problem? Very simple just On and Off your ADSL Modem/ Router then restart your computer. Walla.. you can connect to the internet and browse your favorite websites. :) Hope it helps

  2. abeku January 5, 2008 at 12:11 pm #

    I have the problem before, i just on and of the ADSL modem also and then it ok. It is pretty weird you have to repair up to winsock. Anyway, it is very valuable info. Happy New Year

  3. Quote Mania January 5, 2008 at 2:48 pm #

    Thanks to the internet – the solution of even the rarest prob can be within a couple of clicks.

    I had a similar situation with a friends laptop before and he thought I was a genius. Nope – I just googled the problem.

  4. ITrush January 5, 2008 at 3:30 pm #

    Cool, nice tip there goalcentre, thanks also for sharing the link to “repairing winsock2 corruption” tutorial LiewCF.

  5. DM January 5, 2008 at 10:19 pm #

    streamyx now have new ip block which the numbers are start from 124.x and 118.x addition to the 219.x, 218.x and 6something.x Most of the time if u connect internet and assigned to 124.x ip, probably u cant surf and must reconnect . I’m having this prob recently but now its ok already :)

  6. Syahid A. January 6, 2008 at 12:03 am #

    Nice tip Liew. Or you can have a Live Linux cd handy so you can use it to boot Linux and test if you can went online. That already eliminates hardware problem (network card, etc.)

  7. iCalvyn January 6, 2008 at 11:59 am #

    some how, just few command to fix the problem, people will look us as Expert, but actually…. we just know some thing more then them ;)

  8. santosh January 6, 2008 at 8:37 pm #

    You might want to try the tips here next time

  9. picohat from home network January 6, 2008 at 9:56 pm #

    You might take a look on this simple program as well to solve your weird XP networking problem. Similar concept, but with GUI.. :o)

    Using WinSockFix to Fix Windows XP Networking Problem
    http://www.home-network-help.com/winsockfix.html

  10. goalcentre.com January 7, 2008 at 10:19 am #

    I am a noob in all this thing. Just learn along the way and pick up whatever i can learn. That’s about all. :)

  11. Hardware Tech Review January 7, 2008 at 1:00 pm #

    Cool tips from liewcf and goalcentre. I remember that I had this problem 2 years ago on my XP. I reinstall the Windows to solve the problem. LOL!

  12. AhTim January 8, 2008 at 4:53 pm #

    As normal, Windows always give us “weird” problem :)

    –blog for dream–

  13. goalcentre.com January 8, 2008 at 9:28 pm #

    Serious Hardware Tech Review? :) Like that i guess you must have installed your windows hundred if not thousands of times? lolx!

  14. Vahid January 11, 2008 at 8:24 am #

    Thanks for the solution. :)

  15. aprilcherrie July 7, 2008 at 5:53 pm #

    wow.. that’s cool… it really works for my sis’s computer too.. hehehe.. thanks liewcf

  16. LcF July 7, 2008 at 7:08 pm #

    @aprilcherrie: glad that the tip helped you :)

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