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2,812 Tutorials

How to fix a PC that can't download files

Help! My PC connects to the web, but won't download

QUESTION My Packard Bell PC running Windows Vista is unable to download files. I've spent a lot of money on software to fix the problem, but it hasn't worked. I'm at a total loss! PH Johnson

HELPROOM ANSWER More information is required to answer this question correctly, such as whether you can get online and view web pages, and whether Windows Update is still able to download fixes, but we'll do our best.

If you can browse web pages but high-volume transfers such as downloads don't work, this can signal a problem with your internet connection. If possible, head to PC Advisor's Broadband Speedtest and run the test to determine whether your broadband connection is performing as it should. If it reports your download speed as less than 1 megabit per second (Mbps), you may need to contact your ISP. (See How to test your web connection speed for more.)

If you can't get to this website, ask a friend to come over with a laptop and see whether they are able to download files using your internet connection.

If your broadband connection is working correctly, try temporarily disabling any firewall, internet security and parental-control software you've installed. Disable them one at a time, and remember to switch them back on once they've been ruled out. This procedure should ensure that nothing on your PC is blocking downloads. If you find the culprit, you'll need to look into using an alternative product.

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