A problem with your wifi is a pain in the <insert proverbial here>, at the best of times. It always seems to happen at the worst time too (why is that?).
If you are struggling to fix the "Limited Wi-Fi" error message, then please read on to find out what you can do to solve the problem. Hopefully this guide will have you back watching GoT or chatting with your FB buddies before you know it...
What Is "Limited Wi-Fi", And How Does It Affect Me?
If you are seeing a message saying you have limited wifi it usually either means that you have a weak wifi connection, or you have a good connection but no internet access.
It is a super annoying problem because it often seems to happen randomly. You have a great connection for a long time, then one day, you turn your iPad on and see the dreaded message.
Luckily, it is usually a pretty easy problem to fix.
How To Fix The ‘Limited Wi-Fi’ Issue
Check You Are Within Range Of Your Router
Ok, so this is super simple, and we apologize if we are suggesting the obvious, but it needs to be ruled out.
If you are connecting to your network from a new place, it may be a simple case of you being too far away from your router to get a usable connection. If you think this is the problem, simply move towards your router and see if the ‘Limited Wi-Fi’ message goes away.
If it does but you need to use wifi in the location where you see the message, you still have a few options to solve the problem:
- Move your router (if you can)
- Use a wired connection (if your device supports Ethernet)
- Update your wifi network (card) driver
- Use a wireless extender or access point (if you need wifi in a particular area)
- Upgrade your router to one with a stronger signal
Check Your Wiring
If it isn’t a problem of where you are located (or the router power cycle didn't do the trick), the first thing to do is simply check the wires between your modem and your router are plugged in and the cable is not damaged. After all, if you are connected to your network but not the internet, surely it would make sense if the problem was to do with the internet connection?
If you have checked all your wires and you are still getting the same problem, perhaps check that your internet works by plugging an Ethernet cable straight from your modem into your laptop or computer. If you can’t connect to the internet like this, you likely have a problem with your modem, your computer, or your ISP.
Reset Your Router
Assuming your internet is working fine through a wired connection, the next step is to simply reset your router (unplug it, leave it for 30 seconds, plug it in again.) For reasons sometimes unknown (although often memory related), routers do sometimes seem to stop working and a simple reset will often solve this problem.
Another quick option could be to restart your computer. Again, it doesn't make much sense but this can often solve small problems.
Troubleshoot Problems In Windows
If you are still having problems, Windows has a built in troubleshooter. To use this, simply press the ‘Troubleshoot Problems’ button that appears if you right-click on the network logo.
By following the onscreen instructions that appear you may find that you are able to solve your network problems.
Update Network Card Driver
The issue may simply be that your network card drivers are not up to date. To see if this is the case, you can follow these steps:
1. Search ‘Device Manager’ in the Windows 10 search bar
2. Click on ‘Network Adapters’
3. Double left-click on your wifi network adapter
4. Go to the ‘Driver’ tab
5. Left-click ‘Update Driver’
6. Choose ‘Search automatically for updated driver software’
7. Your computer will then search the web to see if any driver updates are available and automatically download and instal them if they are available.
Still Not Working? Time To Get Technical
If you are still having problems, you may need to get a little more technical with your solutions. One thing you can do is reset your TCP connection using the Command Prompt function on the operating system.
Luckily, doing this is actually a pretty simple process.
1. Search ‘Command Prompt’ in the search bar and open it up.
2. Enter each of the following three lines. Make sure you press "Return" after each line...
netsh int tcp set heuristics disabled
netsh int tcp set global autotuninglevel=disabled
netsh int tcp set global rss=enabled
3. Now you can simply close the command prompt and check your to see if your internet connection is working.
The limited wifi problem is an annoying one, but nonetheless one that is usually pretty easy to fix. Once you know the reason for the error message, it is pretty simple to narrow down where the problem is and get it fixed.