Unrecognized network in Windows 10: no connection to the Internet

Updated: January 6, 2023
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The error “Unidentified network. Without Internet access” is well-known from previous versions of Windows. In the new Windows 10, the “Unidentified network” error looks a little different, but the problem and solutions remain the same. A connection to the Internet seems to be down, as indicated by the appearance of this error. When there is no connection for some reason. In this case, it does not matter whether you have a laptop, a desktop computer, or even a tablet.

This error can appear either when connecting via Wi-Fi, via a router, or when connecting via network cable (directly from your ISP, or via a router). Whenever the Internet connection icon is displayed in the notification panel, it will be surrounded by a yellow exclamation mark. And in the network connections, next to the adapter through which you are connected to the Internet will be written “Unidentified Network”.

Indication of an error when connected via cable (Ethernet)

If you encounter this problem when you have the Internet connection via cable, the connection status window will show the error Unidentified network. No connection to the Internet. There will be a yellow icon next to the Internet connection icon. And next to the “Ethernet” adapter, there will also be a message about an unrecognized network.

How the error appears if the connection is over Wi-Fi

In this case, the error will be No Internet connection, secured. The wireless adapter will have the status Unidentified network. And there will be a yellow exclamation mark near the “Wi-Fi” icon.

Simple solutions for “Unidentified network” error in Windows 10

Errors rarely appear suddenly and on their own. First things first try to remember what you were doing on your computer before the problem appeared. In this case, Unidentified Network. Maybe you installed some program or changed some settings on your computer or Wi-Fi router. If you remember something, try to undo the changes. 

Other causes of the problem are as follows:

  • If the error with no access to the Internet in Windows 10 appears when you connect via a Wi-Fi router, the first thing to do is to reboot the router. 
  • Turn off the power for a couple of minutes, and then turn it back on. If this does not solve the problem, it is a good idea to find out if the Internet works on other devices that are connected through this router. If it works, then you need to look for the problem, specifically on this computer. 
  • If the Internet does not work on other devices, then the problem is in the router, or the Internet service provider.

 You can follow these steps to fix the issue:

  1. Restart our computer (laptop). 
  2. If you see No connection to the Internet, protected, try disabling third-party antivirus for a while. If it is installed on your computer.
  3. Run the Troubleshooting. Simply right-click on the connection status icon, and select Troubleshooting. Look at the result. 
  4. If you are connected without a router, directly to your computer, it makes sense to call the support of your ISP and explain the problem. It is possible that the ISP has some technical problems, and you have an error with the lack of connection to the Internet.

If the recommendations described above did not help, let’s try to take a closer look at a few other solutions.

Doing a network reset

This method very often helps to solve various problems with Internet connection. In Windows 10, doing a network reset is very easy. 

  1. In the settings, under Network and Internet there is a separate item. 
  2. Just click on Reset network, then on the Reset now button and confirm.

You can also reset TCP/IP settings at the command line by running the following commands:

  • netsh int ip reset
  • ipconfig /release
  • ipconfig /renew

Checked TCP/IP settings

“Unidentified Network” errors mean the router or Internet Service Provider’s equipment were unable to provide an IP address. Perhaps the problem is in the IP settings for IPv4 in the properties of our Internet connection. If you already have some static parameters there, it is possible that they are set incorrectly. You could try to set automatic obtaining of IP. Or you can prescribe static settings .

A DHCP server error can also contribute to this error (the DHCP server distributes IP addresses). Therefore, reset the router.

Follow these steps to fix the problem:

  1. Open the Network and Sharing Center and Change Adapter Settings.
  2. Next, you need to open the properties of the adapter through which you are trying to connect to the Internet.
  3. If the connection is via Wi-Fi, then open the properties of the adapter Wireless Network. If over a network cable, Ethernet.
  4. You will most likely see Unidentified Network next to the problem adapter. Right-click on it and select Properties.
  5. Highlight IP version 4 (TCP/IPv4) and click Properties“. This connection can be configured in another window by setting the following parameters:
  6. If you have already set some parameters there, you can try to set Obtain IP address automatically and Obtain DNS server address automatically. It is desirable to remember, rewrite, or save somehow (make a screenshot, for example) the settings that may have been prescribed there. You may have to write them back. Restart the computer and see the result.
  7. If automatic address acquisition was first set there, you can try to set static parameters. Only if you are connecting through a router.
  8. To set static addresses, you need to know the address of your router. This is probably 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1. You can find it on the router itself (on the case). In the IP-address line we write the address of the router, but change the last digit. The subnet mask will be entered automatically. 
  9. And in the field Default Gateway we write the address of the router.  You can also write the DNS addresses: 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4.

Change the network address 

A MAC-address change can sometimes help to improve Internet connectivity through an adapter.

  1. Go to the Device Manager. You can find it and run it through a search. Or by typing devmgmt.msc in the “Run” window, which appears after pressing Win + R.
  2. In Manager, open the Network Adapters tab, right-click on the adapter through which you connect to the Internet, and select Properties.
  3. Click the Advanced tab. Highlight the item Network Address in the list. And by setting the switch next to the empty field, write there a new address of 12 characters. You can only use numbers, or letters from A to F. 
  4. Press Ok and restart the computer.

Uninstall the adapter, update the Ethernet and Wi-Fi adapter driver

To do this, in the Device Manager, just right-click on the adapter, when connecting through which the error Unidentified network appears, and select Delete. If you have problems with Wi-Fi connection, you need to uninstall the driver with “Wi-Fi” or “Wireless” in its name. 

After that, restart your PC, or laptop. The system should again detect and install the adapter driver that we uninstalled.  You can try to reinstall the network adapter driver with which you have problems. Ensure that you download the appropriate driver from the official website for your laptop model, or adapter, and run it during installation.

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