My network devices sometimes go missing

Discussion in 'OffTopic' started by CyberSimian, March 8, 2018.

  1. CyberSimian
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    I have a puzzling problem with devices on my home network. The network uses power-line ethernet adapters, my HTPC runs Windows Vista, and the low-power state uses hibernation. On most occasions when the HTPC wakes from hibernation, it can ping the other devices on the network and receive a reply from those that are powered on. But sometimes it receives no reply, even though those devices are powered on. Example:

    Code (Text):
    1. Pinging 192.168.2.11 with 32 bytes of data:
    2. Reply from 192.168.2.5: Destination host unreachable.
    192.168.2.5 is the network adapter in the HTPC. Some details:

    (1) All of the devices have static IP addresses.

    (2) As far as I know, I am not using any antivirus or malware detection software. Windows own tools for antivirus/malware are disabled.

    (3) I have encountered this problem with a variety of network devices, specifically:
    (a) A Synology NAS.
    (b) A WDTV Media Player.
    (c) A Belkin Network USB Hub.
    All of these devices use some version of Linux (I think), but they perform very different functions. However, they all fail to reply to a ping when the network gets into this weird state (although they were tried at different times -- not simultaneously).

    (4) There is another form of network message called an ARP message ("Address Resolution Protocol"). It is similar to ping (send a small data packet to a specified address, receive a small data packet in reply), but it behaves exactly the same as ping -- most of the time it works, but sometimes it doesn't.

    Do these symptoms sound familiar to anyone? I am hoping for a solution along the lines of "You need to enable the xyz option". Alternatively, is there some sort of reset, rescan, re-init, or delete-all command that will reset or re-init the network status on Vista and allow the pings/ARPs to work reliably? Rebooting clears the problem, but I was hoping for a solution that is less drastic than that. Thanks for any suggestions.

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK


     
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  3. SpudR
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    I have 2x Zyxel Powerline Adapters PLA4215 (the 'Piggy back' type)
    There are a few problems with Powerline Adapters in general, in that they intermittently lose connectivity (I have one too).
    This happens for a while and then they come back - disabling and enabling the NIC will usually bring the connection back quicker, as will using the connection tool and resetting the powerline adapter.
    This seems to be across the range of products and brands, and effects all the models I have used, though disabling the powerline adapter power saving options helps, but doesn't fix the problem.

    Although I have not tried - using Intel NICs and good quality ethernet cables helps too apparently.

    I have yet to fix mine :(
     
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  4. joecrow
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    I have 3 x Devolo DLan 500+ and have much the same problems, fortunately the HTPC to router connection rarely has a failure but my desktop to router pairing is much worse, seems to be weather dependent (worse when mild and wet). I have never really got to the bottom of it, on the odd occasion when the HTPC looses connection simply unpluging/plugging in the adapter fixes it (it is plugged in to an extension lead, I know that is not recommended but it is no worse that when it was direct in the wall:p). The more problematic one for my desktop PC is connected to the wall but its socket also powers the PC so I can't unplug without taking the PC down, for this one I found that running the connection tool and using it to turn the leds off or on, invariably restores the connections, in the worst case if the local adapter is not detected then uninstalling/reinstalling the tool brings everything back to life, also leaving the tool running minimized seems to help.
    I have tried Wifi but for me that was far worse, I live in a spread out apartment in an old building (lots of thick supporting walls). I guess laying in Lan cables would fix it but is not really a easy option in an old building. The power-line adapters are very convenient but maybe we have to live with their foibles. On the positive side the ones I have now have been installed for a few years but are much more reliable than those from a different manufacturer I had in place earlier which suffered both connection and hardware failures, so maybe they are getting better and a new set could help.:unsure:
    Regarding the power setup, I had always assumed that the UK 13A ring main would be optimal for a power-line connection is that what you both have(@SpudR @CyberSimian )? My old fashioned (probably dangerous) pre-war non ring main, sort of, set up here in Germany is certainly not optimal.:eek:
     
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  5. CyberSimian
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    Interesting; it had not occurred to me that it might be the power-line adapters.

    I have several of the Solwise PL-600AV-SMT-PIGGY adapters. These are rebranded versions of the equivalent Aztec adapters. They are notionally 600 Mbits/sec, but from looking at the "Network" tab in Windows "Task Manager" when copying a video file to my NAS, I have never got better than 100 Mbits/sec (the adapters were connected directly to the wall sockets). The HTPC network card, the NAS network card, and the connecting cables are all gigabit. I recently moved the HTPC power-line adapter to an extension mains socket strip that has a one meter cable, and the throughput has droppped to 75 Mbits/sec. :cry:

    Actually, it has just occurred to me that I have another networking problem: at irregular intervals, the connection from my laptop to the internet will pause for 1 to 2 minutes. Web pages timeout, and youtube videos pause (but will resume if I wait long enough). The laptop connection is:

    laptop > (wifi) > wireless router > (cable) > power-line adapter 1 > (electric mains)
    > power-line adapter 2 > (cable) > ADSL modem > (cable) > phone socket

    So the laptop's internet connection could be affected by the power-line adapters "pausing". :( However, I think that there remains a problem with Windows networking.

    There is one piece of information that I failed to include in my previous post: when the WDTV Media Player and the Belkin Network USB Hub failed to respond to pings/ARPs, they were directly connected by cable to the HTPC network card -- no power-line adapters were involved. So it points to a problem with Windows (a bug, or an incorrect setting). :unsure:

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     
  6. joecrow
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    I do recall having an intermittent problem with Win 7 where it detected a "Public" rather than the Private/Home network on boot and would then not connect to the internet, On researching it I found it was apparently was a common problem. The problem disappeared on the upgrade to Win 10. Not sure about Vista, it was clearly a boot up issue, does that fit?
     
  7. CyberSimian
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    When my HTPC powers-on, it is usually waking from hibernation. Can this switch between "Home" and "Public" occur in that situation? I recollect that when setting up the network, there is a Windows panel where the user chooses between "Public" and "Home", so I would have expected that the setting would remain invariant, whether waking from hibernation or booting.

    I previously had two network adapters in the HTPC, but for one of them Windows always displayed "Unknown network" when hovering the mouse pointer over the network icon in the "Task Bar". I did some re-arranging of connections and network definitions recently (I actually removed one network card, and later decided to re-install it), and then I could not get Windows to access the internet at all. So I disabled one of the network adapters, setup the network definition for the other, and then the internet became accessible again (possibly because I chose "Home" rather than "Public"). It is all very confusing, this network stuff. :confused:

    The ping problem with the WDTV Media Player and the Belkin Network USB Hub occurred when I had both network adapters enabled, whereas the ping problem that I had with the NAS earlier this week was with only one network adapter enabled. The next time that this happens, I must check to see if the internet is still accessible. If it is, it probably eliminates the problem that you described.

    This video says it all :D:



    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     
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  8. SpudR
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    Check the power saving settings in Windows (Device manager >> Network Adapters >> Double click the card and Power Management tab). Untick everything (work from the bottom up).
    Test again
    Might be worth checking the advanced settings in the Power applet in Control Panel too - There's something in there about turning off the HDDs that can cause issues too...

    I wrote a series of things that you can save the following as a 'RESETNIC.BAT' file to totally reset the NIC and the associated bits - it might help...
    Code (Text):
    1. ipconfig /release
    2. ipconfig /flushdns
    3. ipconfig /renew
    4. nbtstat -R
    5. nbtstat -RR
    6. netsh int reset all
    7. netsh int ipv4 reset
    8. netsh int ipv6 reset
    9. netsh int ip reset reset.log hit
    10. netsh int ip reset c:\resetlog.txt
    11. netsh branchcache reset
    12. netsh winsock reset catalog
    13. netsh winsock reset
    14. shutdown -r -t 00 -f
    Copy in to Notepad and save a above - run as admin and it will reset stuff and reboot...
     
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