Windows 8 : Administering Windows Networking - Troubleshooting networking (part 3) - Using the network troubleshooters, Using command-line tools

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Using the network troubleshooters

Windows 8 includes a set of built-in tools that are intended to help you determine the cause of problems that might arise with Windows 8 networking components. To access these tools, complete the following steps:

  1. Open Network And Sharing Center.

  2. Tap or click the Troubleshoot Problems link.

    This opens a list of troubleshooting tools (Figure 6).

A list of the troubleshooting tools available in Windows 8

Figure 6. A list of the troubleshooting tools available in Windows 8

There are six network troubleshooters at your disposal:

  • Internet Connections This tool assists you in locating problems that are preventing the computer from connecting to the Internet or to specific websites. When you run this troubleshooter, you’re asked to provide the address of a specific website. In Figure 7, you can see the results. In this example, the user reported that he was unable to browse to In this case, Windows 8 is working fine, but there is a problem at the remote site hosting

    Troubleshooter finding the problem

    Figure 7. Troubleshooter finding the problem

  • Shared Folders If you are sharing folders and experiencing problems, use this troubleshooter to help determine the cause.

  • HomeGroup HomeGroup is a consumer feature that enables easy sharing of resources on a home network.

  • Network Adapter Network adapters can sometimes be the cause of problems. Use this troubleshooter to enable Windows to identify common problems with network adapters.

  • Incoming Connections A very common source of perceived networking problems is Windows Firewall. This troubleshooter can help you determine whether this is applicable to your situation.

  • Connection To A Workplace Using DirectAccess DirectAccess is a remote-connection tool that can replace traditional VPNs. If you are experiencing a problem with this service, use this tool.

Using command-line tools

Not every troubleshooting tool has a graphical user interface. Sometimes, command-line tools are better options. In this section, you explore two such command-line tools.

Using ipconfig

After you’ve been supporting desktops for a while, you will find that the IPconfig tool is indispensable. You already saw the results of ipconfig /all, but the ipconfig command also has some more substantial troubleshooting capabilities. For some of the troubleshooting elements, you need to run ipconfig in a command prompt with elevated (administrator) privileges.

The following table describes some troubleshooting scenarios that can be corrected by using ipconfig.

Table 1. Ipconfig troubleshooting capabilities


Possible cause

Possible solution

A user indicates that he is no longer able to access a website that was working earlier.

The Windows 8 DNS cache might have become corrupted or stale.

ipconfig /flushdns

A computer is using an out-of-date, DHCP-provided IP address.

Release and renew the computer’s DHCP lease.

ipconfig /release followed by

ipconfig /renew

A computer is using an out-of-date, DHCP-provided IPv6 address.

Release and renew the computer’s DHCPv6 lease.

ipconfig /release6 followed by

ipconfig /renew6

Using netstat

The netstat command can be used to troubleshoot individual network connections and to get a very granular look at the traffic on the network. Netstat is useful when you are attempting to verify whether a computer has a specific open connection. Figure 8 shows the results of using the netstat command.

Results of the netstat command

Figure 8. Results of the netstat command

  •  Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista : Troubleshooting GPOs - Group Policy Troubleshooting Essentials
  •  Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista : Creating and Using the ADMX Central Store
  •  Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista : Migrating .adm Templates to ADMX Files
  •  Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista : ADMX Files,Default ADMX Files, Using Both .adm Templates and ADMX Files
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 7) - Managing network settings - Managing a wireless network
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 6) - Managing network settings - Adding a second default gateway,Connecting to a wireless network
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 5) - Managing network settings - Understanding the dual TCP/IP stack in Windows 8, Configuring name resolution
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 4) - Managing network settings - Configuring IP settings
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 3) - Managing network settings - Managing network profiles
  •  Windows 8 : Configuring networking (part 2) - Managing network settings - Using the Network and Sharing Center
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