How to fix common network problems

If you have problems with existing home network or configuring new network following advice may be helpful to you.

Usually network consists of a modem, one or multiple routers and client computers connected via Wi-Fi or physical network cables. Home network is functioning on multiple layers so you need to ensure each of them is working correctly.

Hardware configuration

In case of wired connection it is quite easy to check whether cable connection is working or not. You can unplug network cable and see if connection disappears or if nothing changes. This can help you diagnose multiple network problems. Also each router and modem has lights which indicate whether connection is functioning or not. If corresponding light is blinking then connection is working. If light is turned off or constantly lit this indicates that there is a problem with connection.

Also check what IP address your client computer got assigned. If it ends with 169.254 it means that network connection is not functioning propery and DHCP cannot assign proper IP address.

Make sure that every device is functioning properly. You can check device manual to see what kind of signals it provides when something is not working properly.

If everything is working fine on hardware layer but your network is still not functioning as expected it may be time to look at software layer.

Software configuration

Check if you can access administration interface of each router or modem in your network. If you are not able to do it then it is possible that router or modem is not configured properly.

If you cannot access router or modem via Wi-Fi try to do it with cabled connection. This will help you to determine whether incorrect Wi-Fi configuration caused problems.

Also to see if the problem is in computer or in router you can try connect another computer or device to the router and see if the problem persist. If two or multiple devices are not able to connect to a router then the problem is in router. If only one device fails to connect then there is an issue with device configuration.