Note From The Author, Gus
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When you receive the following message, “Your computer appears to be correctly configured, but the device or resource (DNS server) is not responding”, there are a number of possible causes.
I have had this occur a few times, and the cause has been different each time. In this article, we’ll provide a few simple troubleshooting steps to help solve the issue.
DNS, short for ‘Domain Name Server’, is also expressed as simply ‘name server’. Wikipedia defines Name Server as, “…a program or computer server that implements a name-service protocol. It maps a human-recognizable identifier to a system-internal, often numeric, identification or addressing component.”
Basically, this allows us to use microsoft.com, rather than an IP address. This service works directly with IP addresses and if there are any issues, you may not be able to visit websites in your Internet browser.
Let’s now discuss how IP addresses are set. Recent versions of the Windows operating system allows client computers (that’s your desktop, laptop, etc.) to self-configure an IP address, if a DHCP server is not available.
An example of a DHCP server is your router, wired, or wireless. It has a block of local addresses, on a subnet, to assign connected computers. The subnet is typically 255.255.255.0.
The ability to self-configure is called APIPA, short for Automatic Private IP Addressing. This client-based service automatically assigns itself an IP and a subnet. The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, or IANA, has reserved a different block of numbers for IP addresses, and the subnet will be 255.255.0.0, a Class B subnet.
Computers on different subnets of the same network cannot communicate with each other. Therein a potential problem; your network and computer are on different subnets. Though you may be able to bring up a website, you may notice it never completely loads.
As you can imagine, the first troubleshooting step should be to check if your computer’s IP address has been assigned by itself, or your DHCP server (most likely your router). This can be done easily using code in a CMD window. For this example, I will be using Windows 7, though the same can be followed in Windows Vista and XP.
Try using OpenDNS and/or Google DNS addresses:
Check to see that the DNS service is running
Caution…this will reset all settings to factory default. You will need to go into the admin panel of your router and reconfigure all settings you customized
Follow your user guide, but it will probably be something like pressing and holding a hidden button on the back-side of your router for a brief period of time, and allowing it to restart.
There are many more troubleshooting possibilities, but that would take additional inquiries to ascertain problem areas.