Strangely enough (and I am not the only person to get this problem), after installing Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3) on my five machines at home, one of them instantly lost connection to the outside world, most noticeable thanks to the fact that I could no longer browse the wonderful world of the world wide web.

Alarmed and confused, I quickly ascertained from a few DOS network calls that my PC was no longer automatically picking up my Telkom Mega 105WR router as the default DNS server which basically meant that it could no longer resolve any external addresses.

Although I sat down and struggled for most of the morning to find the root of the problem and figure out why this problem only affected one machine amongst the four others sitting in the office, I came up empty handed. It could be anything from an unsupported network card to some arbitrary security setting that SP3 has enforced on that particular machine, but whatever it is, it doesn’t want to be found anytime soon.

Which is a problem if you want to use the Internet in the meantime of course.

So a quick-fix solution to the problem is naturally to specify your router as the local area connection’s associated DNS server and to that end I’m going to take you through the process nice and quick like.

Firstly, right click on the little network icon to the bottom right of your screen in the taskbar notification area.

Network Icon

From the context menu that appears, click on the status link (it will appear in bold on the menu) to bring up the status dialog box and then click on the properties button to the lower left end of that screen. This will bring up the following dialog box:

Local Area Network

Scroll down the list of components that appear in the General tab and select the “Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)” option. Once selected, click on the properties button to bring up this screen:


Under the General tab, towards the bottom, you will see an option box that is probably already set to “Obtain DNS server address automatically”. Change this to “Use the following DNS server addresses:” and then enter your router’s address as the “Preferred DNS server:”.

99% of the time your router’s address will be and with this change set and applied, you should now be back into business, surfing the latest Facebook updates :)