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Intermittent connection. VPN fixes it.

BoleskBolesk Posts: 6 ✭✭
in Connectivity May 19, 2021

Lately about daily I am having disconnects where I cannot reach websites or use other services. I had a technician come out because I was having some t3 and t4 errors on my modem but that didn't seem to help. Last night I discovered while the internet was out if I turn on my VPN I can connect the websites just fine.

Resetting my router fixes the problem but it continues every day sometimes multiple times a day.

Replies

  • Julia_RJulia_R Posts: 4,603 Lead Mod
    May 20, 2021


    Good morning!

    A bit more information needed here if you are able. Are you using a modem and separate router? When this happens are you unable to reach ALL websites or just certain ones?

    Are you able to run some tracerts via command prompt for us to view when this is happening? Does this happen on all devices in the home, or when you are directly connected via Ethernet to the modem?


    Hope you are having a good day!


    Julia_R

  • BoleskBolesk Posts: 6 ✭✭
    May 21, 2021

    I am using a modem and router separately. I am unable to reach all websites.

    When I do run TRACERT two websites such as Amazon nothing out of the ordinary pops up except a few high times.

    This happens on all devices in the home, phones, game consoles, computers. Wired and Wireless.As soon as I turn my VPN on though I can reach the web just fine. And I found out that restarting just the router will fix the problem.

    I am currently hooking up my third modem and second router to see if it is truly a hardware/software problem or not.


  • Lake802Lake802 Posts: 96 ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 22 May 22, 2021

    Greetings Bolesk – sorry to hear you are having connection issues

    If you still see errors in your modem log ie T3/T4 errors – they can be service impacting and require an onsite tech visit to correct.

    The issue you currently reported of not being able to connect to a website is usually more related to DNS (domain name server) configuration

    When you cant reach a certain website but can reach others – DNS is often the culprit.

    When you connected to VPN your DNS server ip address changes and that is often why things begin to work.

    You can test this on your local PC with the following commands:

    Go to your local command prompt then:

    While not on VPN

    Lake_802: > ipconfig /all | find "DNS Servers"

      DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.1

    Connect to VPN

    Lake_802: >ipconfig /all | find "DNS Servers"

      DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 103.86.99.99

      DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.1

    When I connect to VPN you can see my primary DNS server changed from 192.168.1.1 to 103.86.99.99

    That change can then make the difference of why I can connect to some websites and not others.


    To help resolve the issue, review what DNS servers your local router is using.

    If you have a Spectrum Router it should be picking up the default DNS setting for your area of the Carolinas.

    If you are using your own router, you can factory default it and let it pick up the default settings from the modem.

    As a test you can also change the DNS servers being used temporarily to one of the public ones such 8.8.8.8 and 1.1.1.1.

    If you change the DNS on the router, all devices on the network would be able to use it the next time they reboot/reconnect with the new info.

    You can also manually change the DNS on your local PC as a quick test

    Please let us know if that resolves the issue

  • BoleskBolesk Posts: 6 ✭✭
    May 23, 2021

    Hello Lake, thanks for the reply.


    Unfortunately that was my first idea when the internet started acting like this and I changed the DNS over to 1.1.1.1 and 8.8.8.8 as the secondary, but the problem continued. As of now I am using an ARRIS modem and Netgear router (instead of the Netgear/Netgear combo) and have not had an issue in 2 days.

    Fingers crossed, I will post on here again if it happens with more logs.

  • BoleskBolesk Posts: 6 ✭✭
    May 29, 2021

    Posting again.

    New router, new modem and the same issues.

    I have manually set my DNS to 1.1.1.1 and 8888 on the router.

    If I use the VPN everything connects fine, doing Tracert doesn't show anything weird like in the previous picture.

    When the internet is acting out, I can ping, tracert things just fine but nothing in browsers or other services.

    Resetting the router fixes things right up, but it doesn't matter which router or modem I use.


    Anything else to try would be greatly appreciated.

  • stanncstannc Posts: 424 ✭✭✭✭
    May 29, 2021

    What if you eliminate the router from the mix? Plug an ethernet cable from the modem into your PC and see if it works without a VPN then. Since you can connect using VPN then your modem is working

    If you can't eliminate the router, or if you've verified that the connection works without the router, perform a factory reset on the router. Check the manual for your specific router model, but it usually involves a paper clip in an obscure hole on the back of the router. Then, don't do a "restore" of the configuration, but set the router up manually (change the passwords, wifi password, SSID, etc.). My uneducated guess is that there's a setting in the router that's blocking connections or ports or clobbering your DNS settings. Flash the router to the latest firmware from their website.

    See if that works. That's what I would try.

  • madcorgimadcorgi Posts: 8 ✭✭
    May 30, 2021

    I feel your pain. I had (and am still having) connectivity issues. Several technician visits and a replaced drop to the house. The new line and pulling a splice out of the ground has helped, but it isn't perfect. The more I ask around, the more common this is. Almost everyone who has Spectrum does not have a reliable connection. I don't have a VPN, but your mention here is interesting and something I think I may try -- can't hurt.

  • Julia_RJulia_R Posts: 4,603 Lead Mod
    May 30, 2021


    @madcorgi if you are still having problems I would encourage you to have another tech out to keep investigating. No connection will be perfect but we can certainly keep looking into this to get the performance where it should be. I have private messaged you.

    "Almost everyone who has Spectrum does not have a reliable connection." I would have to respectfully disagree with you on this. Having been with the company for more than a decade I can tell you that the volume of support calls/requests we get is equivalent to a very very small percentage of our customers.

    @Bolesk @stannc wanted to know if you have the same issue when directly connected to the modem. You indicated that rebooting the router fixes the issue, seeing if this issue happens directly connected as well.


    Julia_R

  • BoleskBolesk Posts: 6 ✭✭
    May 30, 2021

    @Julia_R

    I have not had a chance to connect directly to the modem when this happens but even after using now up to 3 different routers and three different modems I am at a complete loss.

    All signs point to it being on my end with either a software or hardware gremlin with one of my pieces of equipment or a DNS problem even after manually setting my DNS on my computer to 1.1.1.1


    When the internet is "out" I can ping and tracert with no problem but nothing else.


    My next course of action is trying to connect directly to the modem but I just have a hard time since it's completely random when it happens

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