How to handle the error “In order to configure TCP/IP, you must install and enable a network adapter card” in Windows 10/8/7

Updated: March 05, 2023
6 min read
How to handle the error “In order to configure TCP/IP, you must install and enable a network adapter card” in Windows 10/8/7
by Thomas Johnson
Tech Expert & Writer
Checked by
Quality Control team

The following error sometimes appears in Windows: "In order to configure TCP/IP, you must install and enable a network adapter card." You see it when you try to open the properties of Internet Protocol version 4 or version 6 (TCP/IPv4 and TCP/IPv6) in the adapter's properties through which you connect to the Internet. So when you try to open the network adapter settings (to change the IP address, DNS, or other settings, for example), a Microsoft TCP/IP window appears with an error message.

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The problem may happen because of the network adapter replacement. As a result, the system can not work with the new adapter, it is impossible to change network settings, the DHCP server does not receive the address, and as a consequence, the Internet does not work.

That is why the error says: "...the network adapter must be installed and configured". And it does not matter that it is installed, as in the system, it is displayed. But we can't set it up because the TCP/IP settings don't open. And most users suddenly get this error without changing the network adapter or other settings, etc.

It is what the error itself looks like related to TCP/IP settings in Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10:

TCP/IP settings error in Windows 7, 8 and 10

In our case, the problem occurred with the "Wireless" adapter in Windows 10 when connecting via a Wi-Fi network. But judging from the information on the Internet, it often fails to configure TCP/IP when connecting to the Internet via cable.

In Windows 7, it is the "Local Area Connection" adapter, and in Windows 10, it is the "Ethernet" adapter. In any case, if you see the error "To configure TCP/IP, you must install and configure a network adapter", then try to apply the solutions presented below.

Options for solving the error

First, try deleting the network adapter in the Device Manager (to reinstall it). Still, since there may be problems with reinstalling drivers (especially in Windows 7), first, I suggest resetting the network settings. Try to reinstall the network adapter. You can download a driver for it and run the installation, but it is much more efficient to remove the network adapter from the system and install it again.

So in order to uninstall the network adapter follow these steps:

  1. You need to open the Device Manager. You can do this in any way that is convenient for you. There are several options. The easiest way is to press Win+R and run devmgmt.msc.
  2. There we go to the tab "Network Adapters" and find the adapter you need (the name of the wireless adapter will most likely have the words "WLAN", "Wireless", "802.11" and the name of the network card will have the words "PCIe", "GBE").
  3. Right-click on it and select "Uninstall Device". Watch carefully! You need to remove exactly the adapter through which problems with connecting to the network occurred.

Next, you need to confirm the uninstallation. I do not recommend checking the box next to "Delete the driver software for this device".

Options for solving the error TCP/IP settings

After uninstalling, the hardware configuration will be updated automatically. But I advise you to reboot your computer. Most often, after uninstalling the adapter and rebooting the computer, the system automatically finds it and installs the necessary drivers. But, to avoid problems later, it is desirable to initially download the driver for the adapter that we will uninstall.

Troubleshooting diagnostics

Troubleshooting diagnostics

Even if the network diagnostics does not fix the error, there may be an indication of the cause and some recommendations that can be used to find a solution on the Internet.

Usually, the option of reinstalling the network adapter helps. The Internet starts working, and the TCP/IP settings open.


Hopefully, this advice helped you solve this problem and eliminate the error "To configure TCP/IP, you must install and configure a network adapter." Otherwise, please address Howly experts in the online chat. They are available 24/7 to help you. All the best!

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