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I'm helping a friend that can't connect to the internet through a hard wired connection or through wireless. It's a laptop, that usually connected fine through both.

The error is that the WiFi bars have a red X. If you click on it, it says "Not Connected. No Connections are available"

It's a windows 7 OS machine. Here are the steps I have tried:

  1. Made sure hardware switches are turned ON on the side of the laptop (no switches found)
  2. Pressed the toggle on the keyboard to make sure it wasn't accidentally turned off (toggle didn't seem to toggle anything)
  3. Checked Device Manager for yellow exclamation points (none found)
  4. Clicked WiFi bars in System Tray, then "Troubleshoot" then got the message: An unexpected error has occurred. The troubleshooting wizard can't continue.
  5. Went to network adapters. LAN and WiFi say Unplugged and Not connected
  6. Tried disabling and re-enabling WiFi adapter (still doesn't work)
  7. In network adapters pressed "Diagnose", got: An error occurred while loading the troubleshooter
  8. Ran sfc /scannow from elevated Command Prompt. After a certain % it stopped and said: Windows Resource Protection could not perform the requested operation
  9. Run chkdsk /r, pressed y, then enter, then restarted computer. Let Chkdsk run for a few hours, came back to find Windows at the login screen.
  10. Try sfc /scannow again. Same error as before.
  11. Uninstalled both network adapters, pressed Action > Scan For Hardware Changes. Still doesn't work

I'm out of ideas. What else could this be.

EDIT (for bounty) I keep trying the same things as listed above, hoping something will just magically work, but it's proven unsuccessful. I've done everything I could possibly think of. I know the best solution would be "Just reinstall Windows", but right now that's not a possibility.

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Verify the wireless adapter supports the same modes as the access point. –  Ramhound Jul 22 '14 at 2:59
    
Yes. It had connected to the access point before. This is not affecting only one access point, we have tried several. Also noted, is that a hard wired connection also doesn't work. –  EGHDK Jul 22 '14 at 3:02
    
The drivers are installed for these devices. You don't indicate its all wireless access points. The LAN device not working was obvious on that front. The fact sfc /scannow is failing indicates the system integrity is beyond repair. –  Ramhound Jul 22 '14 at 3:07
    
You mentioned in the question that SFC /scannow doesn't complete the scan. In that case you might want to try DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth. You'll need to start the command prompt as administrator of course. –  Vinayak Jul 29 '14 at 18:40
    
Can you give me more background on that command? –  EGHDK Jul 30 '14 at 0:42

6 Answers 6

I had a somewhat similar issue with a Win 7 machine a while back. It wasn't wireless just wired but it was having this same issue.

After doing close to the same steps that you have done, I did these things:

  1. Did Windows Update update the driver for your NIC?
  2. If so, then attempt a Driver Rollback.
  3. If not, verify that the NEWEST drivers for the NIC are installed.
  4. If not, install them.
  5. If this does not solve the issue then go back to the place that you found the drivers for your NIC, download ALL possible NIC drivers including ones for Vista and XP.
  6. Attempt installing each one to see if the issue is fixed.

In my case it was simply that Windows Update had installed the newest driver for the NIC and I needed to rollback to a Vista version of the driver. Unfortunately, I am not intelligent enough to explain the reason that the 'updated' version of the driver failed.

Also, SFC failing may be some foreshadowing of a larger problem or it could actually be the problem.

Good Luck!

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Try resetting TCP/IP. To do this yourself, open a command prompt as administrator, and run the following:

netsh int ip reset

Also, open the adapter properties, make sure TCP/IPv4 is enabled, and that the properties are both set to "Obtain...address automatically".

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This definitely sounds like a driver issue, but the fact both your wired and wireless connections don't work suggests the problem could be something else. The odds are somewhat against drivers for both of these devices becoming damaged at the same time.

Try looking at the Event Viewer in the System log for any error or warning messages related to networking, then Google any you aren't sure of.

A reasonably safe option to try is System Restore. You can revert the computer's settings to a point prior to the issue appearing (or several weeks back if you don't know when it stopped working). If this doesn't help you can always "undo" the System Restore. SR doesn't harm user-created documents, e-mails, etc.

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You must take into consideration that the WiFi mini-card could have died. I will ask you to try two things:

  • Check the system BIOS to see If for some reason is disabled from here.
  • Connect a spare USB WiFi adaptor and see If this works.

It's unusual but I saw it happen some days ago. What is the model of the laptop ?

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go into CMD (command prompt) and type this:

netsh wlan connect name="name of network trying to connect to"

use quotes if the network is more than 1 word.

Also try:

netsh interface set interface name="name of your wireless/wired adapter" admin=enabled

this will manually enable the adapter.

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The issue is probably not a software one but a hardware one. Check for a button with icons such as these:

enter image description here

They will then show a prompt which will allow you to re-enable your wireless adapter. That is, in addition to you flipping on your hardware switch which may look like this:

enter image description here

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