Wifi Won’t Reconnect? You Need To Reset Your Network Adapter

OK, I feel like I’ve possibly lost some of you there – but don’t worry, all will become clear.  A common problem that arises with wireless networking (wifi) that many of us now use at home to connect to the Internet is sometimes the connection drops – usually at the most inconvenient time.  Like the time you just clicked the big ‘Pay’ button and you’re wondering if the request made it through in time.

You reconnect and away you go again… or do you?  Well not always.  Sometimes despite seeing the network you want to connect to in your list of available networks it just totally refuses to connect, takes an age before saying the network isn’t available or just down right refuses with some sort of cryptic error message.

You could restart your computer – but you’re halfway through doing something and you really don’t want to lose all your open windows and webpages.  Well fear not, there’s another way – and it’s pretty simple.

Resetting Your Network Adapter

Look for the little networking icon next to your clock in the taskbar.  It could look something like this:

wireless-icon-taskbar

Then click ‘Open Network and Sharing Centre’

In the window that then opens you should notice a menu on the left hand side.  From this menu, you need to click on the ‘Change adapter settings’:

You will then have a list of Network Connections shown to you in a new window – similar to below:

You may have more, less or the same number of connections – that part isn’t important.  The important thing is to select the connection that you’re currently having problems with – most likely, simply called, ‘Wi-Fi’.  Handy, right?

Right click on the connection/adapter that you’re using a click on ‘Disable’:

You should then notice that the network connection/adapter is shown as disabled (ignore the fact that ‘Ethernet’ is pictured below – the process is the same):

Wait a few seconds – to allow the whole ‘disabling network adapter’ process to complete and then right click on the connection again and this time, you’ll see that ‘Disable’ has been replaced with ‘Enable’ – click this:

Congratulations!  You’ve reset your network adapter – which should, the majority of the time, resolve any temporary connection issues you’re experiencing and save you having to restart your computer.

PS.  If you’re not sure which network adapter you’re currently using, there isn’t any harm in disabling them all and re-enabling them one-by-one (or all) – it just takes you more time the first time until you figure out which one it is!

Any questions or if you encounter any problems, let me know in the comments below.