IP address conflict stops PC browsing

  stlucia2 13:00 06 Jun 14
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Answered

I use a Netgear wireless router to connect to the internet, connecting my PC to it via cable. I also use the router's WiFi to connect my tablet to the internet.

From time to time I get an error message on my PC, but not on my tablet, saying there's an IP address conflict with another device on the network. Today it happened while my PC was switched on and my wife switched on the tablet. I wasn't actually on the internet with my PC at the time, but when I did try to get on (Google Chrome) it couldn't make a connection.

There's nothing else connected to my "network", and many times I am able to browse on my PC while the tablet is also being used.

So, what exactly is an IP address conflict please, and how can I resolve it? My PC is running Windows XP fully updated, and my tablet is Android.

  Jollyjohn 13:24 06 Jun 14

A router hands out IP addressess using DHCP (Dynamic Host Control Protocol) and this should give a spare address to each device as it starts up and asks for one.

A router can be configured to use Static IP addresses for devices, you will know if you have done this, it involves accessing the router and each device and setting Static IP's.

What is happening in your case is either the DHCP on the router only has one address available to give out - Very unlikely - or the Tablet is set to use a static IP address which happens to be the first one available and has already been given to the PC.

Quick test. Shut both devices down. Restart the router, wait until all lights go green. Start Tablet and connect to internet Start PC and connect

If there is still a conflict - check router settings on router.

Check settings on Tablet - look under wi fi and look for a setting such as "Use this ip address" or similar

  stlucia2 14:16 06 Jun 14

Thanks for your replies.

I am using XP, but the Run command you've suggested, MechKB2, doesn't bring up a menu that shows my Netgear router -- it gives a screen with four bold headings:- heading "Broadband" with item "DialBB", heading "Internet Gateway" with item "Internet Connection", heading "LAN or High-Speed Internet" with items "Local Area Connection" and "1394 Connection", and "Wizard" with items "New Connection Wizard" and "Network Setup Wizard". Right-clicking on any of those headings gives me a "Properties" option, but then there's no "This connection uses the following items".

I've checked the WiFi settings on my tablet, Jollyjohn, and there seems to be no option to change the IP address. I've switched WiFi on the tablet on and off, and each time I switch it on the IP address shows as 192.168.0.2.

I've also gone into the Netgear setup program on my PC, and it shows the LAN Port Address as 192.168.0.1. Again, there seems to be no option to change it, or to make it automatic. On another Netgear screen Internet IP address "Get Dynamically From ISP" is checked.

  stlucia2 17:13 06 Jun 14

OK I've done all that, and it's changed the IP address for the "NVIDIA nForce 10/100 Mbps Ethernet" to 192.168.0.3. It shows the "Default Gateway", the "DHCP Server", and the "DNS Servers" as 192.168.0.1.

I don't really know the significance of those numbers, but I'll see how it goes for a while. I've just switched on my tablet again, connected to the WiFi, and it now says that its IP address is 192.168.0.2, and I've got no error message on my PC yet.

  Woolwell 19:09 06 Jun 14

This can sometimes be very quickly resolved by switching the router off and back on again.

  rdave13 20:11 06 Jun 14

Only once had this problem. Two xboxs, one laptop, one desktop and two IPads online working ok. Tried to connect the netbook and it wouldn't connect with the same problem. The following day, when house was empty, with no machine connected, I rebooted the router. All machines connected ok after that. The poor router must have been confused :)

Wonder what will happen when my 'smart' TV arrives this Sunday :-\

  stlucia2 20:25 06 Jun 14

Well, it seems to be working okay at the moment. I can switch the tablet on and off without affecting the PC's internet connection.

But I'm still confused about what the IP address is, and what's controlling it. Some answers seem to suggest that it's something the router is doing, but others suggest it's Microsoft.

  rdave13 20:33 06 Jun 14

As I understand it you set up the PC to obtain IP and DNS automatically and the router is already configured to automatically provide these unless you use a static IP.

  rdave13 20:34 06 Jun 14

Found this , might help.

  stlucia2 21:53 06 Jun 14

Thanks rdave13. The automatic options for IP address and DNS server address are already checked in my system.

  rdave13 22:18 06 Jun 14

It happens once in a while so a router reboot refreshes the settings. Used to be called Power-Cycling a router. ISPs used to love this phrase :)

I suppose it sounded technical compared to simply rebooting it.

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