Internet Explorer Not Connecting to the Internet

Recently I received an e-mail from someone who was having trouble getting Internet Explorer to connect to the Internet. Various other programs, such as e-mail, were able to connect, however, the browser was having difficulty.

As I always like to do, I decided to see if I can help. It is more difficult via e-mail to solve computer problems, but a few checks and some investigation I was able to determine the issue behind the browser. I provide my findings in this post.


Connection Issues

The person having issues explained that Messenger and Outlook were connecting no problem, but Internet Explorer was display a message indicated the Web page could not be displayed. Seeing as Messenger and Outlook were both connecting, I immediately eliminated any connection issues to the Internet Service Provider. I decided to concentrate on the browser itself.

At first, I thought it may me a DNS cache issue. I had the user run ipconfig /flushdns from the command prompt to attempt to clear any local DNS cache. Unfortunately, it didn’t work as the user indicated that the response back was Could not flush the DNS resolver cache: Function failed during execution. This could possibly mean that the DNS Client service has not been started, so I next had the user attempt to start the service.

The user did as I asked, and then replied back to me that the software firewall on the machine displayed a message regarding a program change. The little light bulb went on in my head when I read this. For those who have seen these messages from software firewalls, but don’t know what they mean, allow me to explain it to you.

When a new program attempts to connect to the Internet, the software firewall detects this and stops it from connecting without permission. To get permission, the firewall displays a message on the screen for the user to either allow or deny the program to connect. When you allow a program, such as a Web browser, to connect to the Internet, the firewall allows any requests made from the application to be sent to the Internet.

In the issue discussed here, Outlook and Messenger were given permission, but Internet Explorer was denied permission to connect to the Internet. This was the reason Internet Explorer could not display any Web pages. Once the user granted permission for Internet Explorer to connect, they were able to display Web pages again.

Granting Permission

The image above shows ZoneAlarm asking permission for Internet Explorer to access the Internet. Other software firewalls will have a similar message. To grant permission in ZoneAlarm, do the following:

  1. Click the Remember this setting checkbox. This will prevent ZoneAlarm asking permission every time Internet Explorer attempts to connect to the Internet.
  2. Click the Allow button to grant permission.

Repeat the above steps for any application you want to access the Internet. Click the Deny button if you don’t want an application to connect.

Summary

I recently received an e-mail from an individual who had trouble getting Internet Explorer to access the Internet, even though other applications could access the Internet. After a few e-mails, it was determined that the software firewall installed on the computer prevented Internet Explorer from connecting to the Internet. Once permission was granted to Internet Explorer to access the Internet, the user was able to display Web pages in the browser again.

PG

About Paul Salmon

Paul Salmon is the founder of Technically Easy. He is a an experienced PC user, and enjoys solving computer-related problems that he encounters on a regular basis.

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12 Comments

  1. manu
    Posted August 5, 2012 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    hey dude…….i’ve also same problem. downloader coudn’t download any thing that displays a msg…”can coneect to……….xyz.com:80″ that also tell me to check firewall setting but i recently disable the firewall and i haven’t any other firewal software. and also internet explorer and google chrome coudn’t connect to internet where as firefox working well.

    can any body help me

  2. Andrew Walker
    Posted September 30, 2011 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Hi there. Thanks for sharing this. I’ve experienced this kind of problem once or twice. I forgot. But somehow I did manage to get it connected again.

  3. erica
    Posted November 8, 2010 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    I cn not connect to internet thourgh internet explower it says not able to detecet problem. I reset internet exp. from internet options. Did commandprompt netsh winsock eset catalog didn’t work. Put MS config nd reset IE8 didn’t work.. help i’m tired of trying to get it to work.

  4. Slam2891x
    Posted May 22, 2010 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    Try This

    1. Click Start, please type “inetcpl.cpl” (without quotation marks) in the Start Search bar and press Enter to open the Internet options window.
    2. Switch to the Advanced tab.
    3. Click the Reset Internet Explorer Settings button.
    4. Click Reset to confirm the operation.
    5. Click Close when the resetting process finished.
    6. Uncheck Enable third-party browser extensions option in the Settings box.
    7. Click Apply, click OK.

    After that, try to see if it works.

    Hope it helps.

  5. Slam2891x
    Posted May 22, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    1. Click Start, please type “inetcpl.cpl” (without quotation marks) in the Start Search bar and press Enter to open the Internet options window.
    2. Switch to the Advanced tab.
    3. Click the Reset Internet Explorer Settings button.
    4. Click Reset to confirm the operation.
    5. Click Close when the resetting process finished.
    6. Uncheck Enable third-party browser extensions option in the Settings box.
    7. Click Apply, click OK.

    After that, try to see if it works.

    Hope it helps.

    • Adrian
      Posted November 11, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      Thanks – worked perfectly for me.

  6. Posted May 7, 2010 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    I have to admit that your own blog page is truly topical. I have been shelling out considerable free time for the last last couple months looking at whatever is in existence influenced by the actual fact that I am setting up to launch a blog. The information and facts you have put on here is pretty much to the point. It just kind of feels so baffling in relation to all the technological innovations that are in existence, but I appreciate the way your appears to be. Gotta seriously like where technological innovation has come over the last twelve yrs.

  7. Posted January 18, 2008 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    I would reset your router to the factory defaults and start from there:

    Direct from Linksys’s Website:

    The router can be set to factory default by pressing the Reset button of the router and resetting through the router?s web-based setup page. Pressing the Reset button on the back of the router for 30 seconds will reset your router to its factory default settings. Any settings on the router will be erased and the router?s IP address will become “192.168.1.1″ and the password will be “admin.”

  8. Rick Stranahan
    Posted January 18, 2008 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I cannot connect to my Linksys WRT54G Wireless Router. I never setup security, yet, when I try to connect I’m prompted with a password request and I’ve tried every password I know. When I go to “Manage Networks” all networks are listed, including Linksys. However, it’s listed as “Unsecured.” Lastly, I installed an HP Wireless Printer, it works perfectly. When I take my computer to other locations in the city or, accross country, it identifies all wireless networks available and connects with ease. When I try to connect to 192.168.1.1, after responding to the password request with “admin” I receive a blank page. I’m running Explorer 7.0.

    Your thoughts ??

  9. Posted January 8, 2008 at 12:28 am | Permalink

    I also noticed the error, but I won’t look into it.

  10. Posted December 22, 2007 at 12:44 am | Permalink

    I’ve noticed the error too. I’ll look into it.

  11. Posted December 22, 2007 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Great article – I know about this kind of stuff, but I can think of plenty of people who would find this useful.

    Ironically, when I first clicked the link to view this page, I got an error:

    Server Error
    The server encountered a temporary error and could not complete your request.

    Please try again in 30 seconds.

    It displays fine now though!

    Have a great Christmas. :)

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  • About Me

    I am Paul Salmon, an avid technology fanatic who is always learning new things. My goal is to inform and help others with technology.

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