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Old 1st February 2005   #1
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Unable to contact your DHCP server


Well here's the problem.

I have 3 desktop all three connected to the internet via a wired linksys router, to a cable modem (motorola). All of these worked on the network
1. Win XP Pro-3ghz
2. Win 98SE - 400 mhz
3. Win XP Home - ~1.4 ghz

I decided to upgrade my Win98 box to Win XP Pro. So I do this, first problem arises-the built in NIC on that computer doesn't work. So I take the NIC from the Win XP Home box and put it in what was the win 98 Machine (from here on out- Comp 2). I even swapped in the cable it used to use just in case.

So from a totally clean install I get 'unable to contact your DHCP server'

Steps I have already taken-
1. Set static IP/DNS of 192.168.1.105 and 192.168.1.1 (address of the router)
2. Checked the Router DHCP tables. Only computer on it is my first, the 3ghz.
3. Reset the router via toothpick and unplugging
4. Rebooted Comp2 a few times.
5. Disabled and enabled the network bridge.
6. Attempted to set up the network in different ways (Direct connect, and home network where it connects through a gateway)
7. Run the network setup disk I used on the 98 machine to get it on
8. Bypassed the router straight to the cable modem.
9. Updated drivers to ones from 1/17/2005 (as well as ones from 12/2/2004).
10. Run the winsockfix utility that's been posted about.
11. Installed TCP/IP v6 for developers in a vague hope.
12. Done the netsh int ip reset c:\resetlog.txt command.
13. Gone into My computer (right click)->Manage->Services and checked on the DHCP setting, which is going and 'always on'
14. Uninstalled the built in NIC that won't work (not supported by XP, an intel 21143).
15. Removed the winsock/winsock 2 registry keys via reg edit then rebooted, then readded TCP/IP with 'have disk' from windows\inf (then rebooted)

The NIC i'm working with is a Realtek 8139 family.

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Old 2nd February 2005   #2
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One point worth making. If at stage 1. you set the Computer's IP address statically, it would not appear in the router's DHCP tables (step 2). That table contains the details of the devices the router has handed addresses out to. It does not list all the device on the network.

Go back to basics.
Start by uninstalling the network card you know works and reinstalling it.
Then set the IP back to a static address (e.g. 192.168.1.105 same mask as router)

Now at the command prompt ping the router:

PING 192.168.0.1

You should get a reply. If not you've got a NIC orTCP/IP config problem or a cable problem.

If you get replies to the ping requests you have a connection to the router. So next try setting the computer's gateway to the router's IP address (192.168.0.1) and the DNS to the same. Then try:

PING www.windowsbbs.com

If that works your system is working fine - there may be a problem with the DHCP service on the router.

If not, try

NSLOOKUP www.windowsbbs.com

Also try

TRACERT www.windowsbbs.com

If the outputs don't make sense to you post back and we'll answer your queries.

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Old 2nd February 2005   #3
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Quote:
1. Set static IP/DNS of 192.168.1.105 and 192.168.1.1 (address of the router)
Try setting it to Auto.

If everything is working correctly setting the Network to AUTO should work.

I have an XP Pro and two 98SE machine and a Printer plugged into a 4 port switch and the switch plugged into a BEFSR41 Router and everything is set to auto. I have never set it anyother way.

The addresses range from 192.168.1 100 thru 192.168.1.103.

Who gets what address depends on who gets turned on first. Except the Printer is always 192.168.1.100 because it does not get turned off.

I have even unplugged a 98SE machine and plugged in a 98 machine and it worked fine.

Is DHCP enabled on the Router Status ?

BillyBob

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Old 2nd February 2005   #4
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My System
If using a static ip on xp computer, open the services applet and STOP the DHCP Client service and set it to manual. It is not needed if using a static ip and if started will sometimes cause conflicts.

It may be necessary to log on to the router and grab the ip address of the isp DNS servers and use these ips in DNS Tab in the Advanced TCP/IP Properties window for the selected network connection.

Computers that use static ip addresses will not show up in a router DHCP Client table because these computers are not DHCP clients.

It may also be necessary to flush the DHCP Clients table in the router by deleting entries, shutdown all connected computers, then use the router's reset button, and one by one boot the systems.

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Old 2nd February 2005   #5
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I am wondering why Static IPs are attempted. I see no reason for using Static IPs.

The setting on my wired Linksys Router ( BEFSR41 ) setup screen are;

Obtian an IP address =Auto
Host Name----------=Blank
Domain Name--------=Blank
MTU----------------=Disabled

Local IP------------=192.168.1.1
Sub Mask----------=155.255.255.0
Local DHCP server--=Enabled
Start IP------------=192.168.1.100
Sub mask----------=255.255.255.0
# of addresses-----=50

The NICs on all machines are set to AUTO optain address. But each PC does need to be named. The name is what shows up when I connect one to the other for gaming or whatever. And it makes no difference in which order they get turned on.

The Name also shows up along with the IP address in the Client table of the Router. I just looked and this machine is 192.168.1.102. It was 192.168.1.101 yesterday. ( my Wifes machine got turned on first apparrently )

I have NEVER had a problem with any machine. They include XP Pro. 98SE ( 2 ). and I have plugged other machines with 98FE and NEVER had a problem accessing the Network or the Internet.

I upgraded this machine from 98SE to SP Pro and things just kept right on going.

The Printer is also plugged into the switch along with the 3 machines and I DID NOTHING ( other than install the drivers on each machine ) to get it working. It normally stays at 192.168.1.100 becuase it does not get turned off. Unless we are going to be away for an extended period of time.

That way anyone of the machines can use it without any other one being on. It IS NOT shared.

BillyBob


Last edited by BillyBob; 2nd February 2005 at 19:47.
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Old 2nd February 2005   #6
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Look at the title of this thread: "Unable to contact your DHCP server"

There are two possible reasons for this:
  1. The computer's network configuration or the computers network hardware is at fault.
  2. The DHCP service on the router isn't working properly, or there is a network problem between the computer and the router.
Switching to Static IPs will allow thatdan23 to determine whether the problem is due to reason 1 or reason 2. If he can connect to the network with a static IP setup it is most like that the problem stems from reason 2. If he is still unable to connect to the network with a static address set up it will tell him the problem is due to reason 1.

Once he has worked out where the problem lies he will then be able to fix it. Once fixed he'll be able to switch back to Auto IP address assignment. On the other hand he may want to stick with static IP, in which case TonyT's advice about switching off the DHCP service on the router is absolutely correct. However, it is not necessary during this early diagnosis stage (as long as thatdan23 is careful not to select a static address that is already assigned to another computer).

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Old 2nd February 2005   #7
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Quote:
by ReggieB
Look at the title of this thread: "Unable to contact your DHCP server"
I did look at the title. And I just asked the question below. And showed how my setup appeared on my Router. And noted how my NICs were set. And tobether it makes my DHCP available and work just fine.

Quote:
I am wondering why Static IPs are attempted. I see no reason for using Static IPs.
BillyBob

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Old 2nd February 2005   #8
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DHCP is great. Makes network administration much easier.

However, sometimes DHCP goes wrong. It doesn't happen often. It hasn't happened to you. But it does happen.

When DHCP fails, switching to static IP will get you back up and running until you can get DHCP working again.

Switching to static IP also allows you to test if you have a network connection to the DHCP server, which is what I am suggesting here.

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Old 2nd February 2005   #9
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Quote:
When DHCP fails, switching to static IP will get you back up and running until you can get DHCP working again.
That may be true.

But that is also why I included my various settings so that thatdan23could maybe check things out and see about getting DHCP working.

Also. Sometime something that may seem irrelevant makes us stumple onto something that is relevant.

BillyBob

PS.
This could also be a case of " One fix does not fit all. "
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Old 2nd February 2005   #10
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I just remembered something.

One problem that I did have once.

I picked up and used the WRONG type of cable. I bleieve I used a crossover. Or I should have used a crossover. I really forget which.

BillyBob

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Old 3rd February 2005   #11
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To clarify the fixes I listed were all independent. I did not have a static ip set while doing fixes 2-14.

Also an update-it seemed the NIC I was using was fried, however I got a new NIC today and tried it. Same error. Tech support wasn't any help. I transfered it to the XP home box and it worked just fine, without having to restart anything.

So with the new NIC we can then rule out its not the card. Perhaps its the PCI slot? (which would be weird as I've used it on two different slots.) Perhaps the computer is merely too old? (on the order of 6 years) That seems a bit unlikely to me. The only other option I can think of to get the computer on the net is to find a driver that works for the built in NIC that does not seem compatible with xp (A intel 21143 ethernet, from a compaq 5600i)

Billybob-Router is enabled to DHCP, have had up to 4 computers on the router and it worked fine.

ReggieB-Indeed it is reason 1 (The computer's network configuration or the computers network hardware is at fault.) as the static ip fix didn't help.

Billybob (Again, replying in order of seeing posts)-The cable is just fine as its worked with other computers in the past. Going so far as to use the same cable with the same card to ensure this.

So it seems an XP driver for Intel 21143 NIC or I've got no clue what's going on with the PCI slots.

Dan

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Old 3rd February 2005   #12
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OK. Just so I have things clear.

Quote:
2. Win 98SE - 400 mhz
I believe this is the box that has the problem.

Quote:
So from a totally clean install I get 'unable to contact your DHCP server'
You did a clean install.

According to your last post it now looks like the problem is with XP and/or the NIC driver. And if it is DHCP nor Static IP is going to work.

If your Router is set OK. And you are using the cable that worked before, where else could the problem be ?

BillyBob

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Old 3rd February 2005   #13
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The 400mhz box is the problem computer (used to be Win98, is now Win XP)

My router is ok-2 other computers are using it.
The cable is ok-tested it on multiple computers
XP is okay-I took the Belkin NIC I bought today and stuck it in a 1.5ghz win XP home computer and i was able to run it straight out of the box (using RealTek drivers, which were also used on the 400 mhz when I installed it, I primarily used the Belkin drivers)

Essentially I've determined that it is that specific box that has the problem. There's no reason why XP Home could handle something XP Pro can't (barring ridicously obscure things, I believe it to be a safe assumption)

So I've got two solutions for XP
find a driver for the onboard NIC that doesn't work with XP
Somehow get the purchased Belkin NIC to work on the box.

My final solution is to reinstall win 98SE to get it working.

Dan

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Old 3rd February 2005   #14
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What's the model of the Belkin NIC?

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Old 3rd February 2005   #15
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Belkin NIC is a F5D5000 that works with Realtek drivers (those are the pictures they show in the pamphlet and what its currently using on my 1.5ghz XP home box)

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