The Internet has become an integral part of your lives in the last two decades, with the number of users increasing manifold each year. Most of our professional work in some way or the relies on a stable internet connection, and then comes social networking and e-commerce, both of which have gained tremendous popularity in recent years. But, a simple error can break that connection and keep you from accessing the internet.
One such error is the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration”. You might see this error when trying to run the troubleshooter or just after turning on the system. A similar error can be encountered when using an Ethernet connection as well.
What Causes the “WiFi Doesn’t Have Valid IP Configuration” Error?
There could be several underlying issues that lead to this error. We have listed some of the common issues to help you identify what’s causing the error on your PC.
- Driver Issues
- System Infected with Malware
- Network Connection Issues
- Misconfigured Network Settings
- Disabled Services
- Hardware Issues
Identifying the exact issue is no easy task even if you know the likely scenarios, and we don’t expect you to. Therefore, we have listed the fixes in an order such that the most common issues are tackled first, to save time. Hence, follow the fixes in the same order as they are mentioned.
1. Some Basic Checks
Before you go around modifying settings to get your internet connection back up, there are a few simple checks that would help ascertain if the issue is indeed with your system.
First, connect to the same Wi-Fi using another device, either another PC or mobile, and check if you can access the internet. If it doesn’t work, it could a problem with the ISP (Internet Service Provider) and we recommend getting in touch with their technical team.
In such cases, you can try restarting the router. Simply turn it off, wait for a minute or two, and then turn it back on. Now, check if you can access the internet. If the error persists, contact the ISP.
But if you are able to connect to the internet on other devices, it’s either some misconfigured setting, a driver issue, or something else that could be leading to the error. Just follow the fixes mentioned below and the internet connection will be restored in no time.
2. Release/Renew IP Address
This is one of the most common fixes known to resolve issues pertaining to the IP address. You just have to run a couple of commands in the Command Prompt.
To release and renew the IP address, enter ‘Windows Terminal’ in the text field of the ‘Search Menu’ and click on the relevant search result to launch the app.
If you have not set Command Prompt as the default profile on Terminal, Windows PowerShell will open by default. To open the Command Prompt tab, click on the arrow icon at the top and select ‘Command Prompt’ from the menu. Alternatively, you can press CTRL + SHIFT + 2 to directly launch the Command Prompt tab.
Now, in the Command Prompt tab, type or paste the following command and press ENTER to execute it.
Wait for the command to be executed. Once it’s done, type or paste the following command and press ENTER.
Now, close the Command Prompt and check if the error is fixed. If not, restart the computer and verify again. If the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error persists, move to the next fix.
3. Reset TCP/IP Stack
Winsock or Windows Socket is the set of data that programs use to access the internet. In case its settings have been modified or a part of the data has gone corrupt, resetting it will help fix the issue. You will again need to run a few commands in an elevated Command Prompt to reset the TCP/IP stack.
Search for Windows Terminal in the ‘Search’ menu, right-click on the relevant search result and select ‘Run as administrator’ to open an elevated command prompt. Click ‘Yes’ on the UAC box that appears.
Now, open the ‘Command Prompt’ tab in Terminal, as discussed earlier.
In the Command Prompt, type or paste the following command and press ENTER to execute it.
netsh winsock reset catalog
Next, type or paste the following command and press ENTER to execute it.
netsh int ipv4 reset reset.log
After the earlier command is executed, enter the following command and press ENTER to execute it.
netsh int ipv6 reset reset.log
After executing the three commands, restart your computer and check if the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error is fixed.
4. Fix Driver Issues
Various issues with the network driver could be behind the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error and we will look at the various fixes one at a time. But, first, let’s see how we locate the Wi-Fi network driver.
To locate the network driver, search for ‘Device Manager’ in the ‘Search’ menu, and click on the relevant search result to launch it.
Now, locate and double-click on ‘Network adapters’ to view the devices under it, where you will find the Wi-Fi adapter/driver.
Now that you have located the driver, let’s see the various fixes pertaining to issues with the driver that will help fix the error.
If there is a minor bug that’s preventing the driver from functioning, simple disabling and then re-enabling the driver should do.
To re-enable the driver, right-click on the Wi-Fi network adapter, and select ‘Disable device’ from the context menu.
Select ‘Yes’ on the confirmation box that appears.
The driver has now been disabled. Now, wait for a minute, then right-click on the ‘Wi-Fi’ adapter, and select ‘Enable device’ from the context menu.
Check if this fixes the error.
Outdated errors can also lead to various errors, therefore it’s recommended to keep the drivers updated. Although Windows generally takes care of the driver update, there’s no harm in updating it manually if you encounter an error.
To update the driver, right-click on the ‘Wi-Fi’ adapter and select ‘Update driver’ from the context menu.
You will now find two options listed in the ‘Update Drivers’ window, either to let Windows search for the best available driver on the system or to manually locate and install one. It’s recommended that you let select the first option and let Windows check for updates. If there’s one, it will automatically be installed.
If Windows couldn’t find a better version, the window will read ‘The best drivers for your device are already installed’. This does not necessarily mean that one’s not available and you can check the manufacturer’s website for it.
To find if there’s an update available on the manufacturer’s website, you could either directly visit the website and navigate to the section with the download link for ‘Wi-Fi’ driver for Windows 11, or search for it on Google.
Use the ‘Computer Model’, OS’, and ‘Driver Name’ as keywords for the search. Locate and open the manufacturer’s website from the search results and check if an update is available. If there’s one, download it.
After downloading the file, double-click on it to run the installer and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation process. Once the driver is updated, check if the error is fixed.
Roll Back Driver
Many a time, you could encounter the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error after updating the driver. If that’s the case, you can simply roll back the driver and go to the previous version.
To roll back the driver, right-click on the ‘Wi-Fi’ adapter and select ‘Properties’ from the context menu.
In the ‘Properties’ window, navigate to the ‘Driver’ tab, and click on ‘Roll Back Driver’.
Note: If you find the ‘Roll Back Driver’ option greyed out, it’s either that Windows did not retain the files for the previous version, or you haven’t updated the driver yet.
Check if the error is resolved, if not, move to the next fix.
Driver files may also corrupt due to various reasons leading to errors in connecting to a Wi-Fi network. A corrupt driver generally has a yellow exclamation sign right next to its icon. If that’s the case, re-installing the driver will fix the error.
To re-install the driver, right-click on the ‘Wi-Fi’ adapter and select ‘Uninstall device’ from the context menu.
Now, tick the checkbox for ‘Attempt to remove the driver for this device’ and click on ‘Uninstall’ in the confirmation box that appears.
After the driver is uninstalled, restart the computer. Now, Windows will automatically download a fresh compatible driver on your system. Check if you are now able to access the internet.
5. Restore Default Windows Firewall Settings
If you have modified the Windows Firewall settings or it could be the antivirus that made the changes, in either case, it might lead to the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error. Here, simply restoring the default Windows Firewall settings would fix the error.
To restore default Windows Firewall settings, press WINDOWS + R to launch the ‘Run’ command, enter ‘firewall.cpl’ in the text field, and then either click on ‘OK’ at the bottom or press ENTER to launch Windows Defender Firewall.
Next, click on the ‘Restore defaults’ in the left pane of the ‘Windows Defender Firewall’ window.
Again click on the ‘Restore defaults’ option on the next screen.
Choose the appropriate response in case any further confirmation box pops up.
After restoring the default Windows Firewall settings, check if the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error is fixed.
6. Manually Set the IP Address
You could also be encountering the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error due to problems with your system getting a valid IP address. In this case, manually entering the IP address and other related information will solve the problem.
To manually set the IP address, press WINDOWS + R to launch the Run command, enter ‘ncpa.cpl’ in the text field, and either click on ‘OK’ at the bottom or press ENTER to launch Network Connections.
Next, right-click on the ‘Wi-Fi’ connection and select ‘Properties’ from the context menu.
Now, select the ‘Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)’ option under ‘This connection uses the following items’, and click on ‘Properties’.
First, select the ‘Use the following IP address’ option and enter the following details in the fields.
- IP address: 192.168.1.X (where X can be any value between 1 and 255, I entered ’20’)
- Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0
- Default gateway: 192.1681.1.1
Next, select the ‘Use the following DNS server addresses’ option and enter the following details.
- Preferred DNS server: 8 . 8 . 8 . 8
- Alternate DNS server: 8 . 8 . 4 . 4
Now, tick the checkbox for ‘Validate settings upon exit’ and click on ‘OK’ at the bottom to save the changes.
After saving the changes, restart the computer and check if the error is fixed.
7. Run Malware Scan
There’s also a possibility that you are encountering this error due to malware or virus present on your computer. Running a malware scan using the built-in Windows Security app should fix the issue. In Windows Security, you will find multiple scan options, it’s recommended that you run a ‘Full Scan’ to thoroughly scan your computer.
To run a malware scan, search for ‘Windows Security’ in the ‘Search’ menu, and click on the relevant search result to launch the app.
In Windows Security, select the ‘Virus and threat protection’ option.
Now, click on ‘Scan options’ to view the various types of scans available, since only the ‘Quick scan’ option is displayed presently.
Now, select the ‘Full Scan’ option and click on ‘Scan now’ at the bottom.
The scan will now begin and take some time to complete Meanwhile, you can continue working on the system and let the scan run in the background. After the scan is complete, you will be informed if any malware or virus was detected and the action taken.
8. Uninstall the Antivirus
If you are using a third-party antivirus, it could be conflicting with your network settings and leading to the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error. If the above fixes have not worked, you uninstall the antivirus and check if it fixes the error.
To uninstall the antivirus, press WINDOWS + R to launch the “Run’ command, enter ‘appwiz.cpl’ in the text field, and either click on ‘OK’ at the bottom or press ENTER to open the ‘Programs and Features’ window.
The programs installed on your system will be listed here. Select the antivirus from the list and click on ‘Uninstall’ at the top.
Choose the appropriate response in case a confirmation box pops up.
After the antivirus is uninstalled, check if the error is fixed. In case the error persists, it’s not your antivirus but another issue that leading to the error.
9. Perform a Clean Boot
If you are encountering the error due to a problematic application or malfunctioning service, performing a clean boot would help identify it, and you can take the necessary action. Clean boot is an effective troubleshooting method since only the critical services, drivers, and programs are loaded. Here’s how you can perform a clean boot.
To perform a clean boot, press WINDOWS + R to launch the Run command, enter ‘msconfig’ in the text field, and either click on ‘OK’ at the bottom to press ENTER to launch the System Configuration.
In System Configuration, navigate to the ‘Startup’ tab, and click on ‘Open Task Manager’.
In the ‘Startup’ tab of Task Manager, select each program listed here, and click on ‘Disable’ at the bottom. Once you have disabled all the programs on the list, close the Task Manager.
Now, navigate to the ‘General’ tab in ‘System Configuration’, select ‘Diagnostic startup’ and click on ‘OK’ at the bottom.
Finally, click on ‘Restart’ in the box that appears to restart the system with just the critical services, drivers, and programs loading at startup.
Once the system restarts, start loading the programs and services one at a time and identify the one that’s causing the “WiFi Doesn’t Have a Valid IP Configuration” error. If it’s a program that causing the error, uninstall it the way we uninstalled the antivirus earlier. If it’s a service, just keep it disabled.
This will fix the error on a Windows 11 PC.
With the above fixes, your internet connection would be back up and you can once again access your favorite websites. Also, we would like to reiterate that following the fixes in the order they are mentioned would help quickly resolve the error, unless you know the exact cause and are able to identify the fix in the article.