How To: Repair And Reset Windows Vista TCP/IP Winsock Catalog Corruption
TCP/IP stack Winsock settings in Windows Vista may get corrupted, causing errors and problems with Internet connectivity.Most of the Internet connectivity problems in Windows Vista arise out of corrupt Winsock settings. Corrupt Winsock or Windows sockets configuration can be due to a lot of reasons such as installation of a networking software, or due to virus, trojan or malware infection, or sometime even due to disinfection of spyware by security software.
The Layered Service Provider (LSP) / Windows Sockets (Winsock) portion of the network stack is a key component in all network traffic, LAN and WAN. When it stops working, we say that it’s “corrupted”. The symptoms of corruption are given below:
- Connectivity through some services, but not all.
- Low level services like ping may work, but email won’t work.
- Email might work, but not the browser.
- If you have multiple browsers, maybe Firefox will work but Internet Explorer won’t.
- Connectivity to local addresses, but nothing on the Internet.
- Connectivity to some computers on the LAN, but not others.
- Slow connectivity all around.
- Strange diagnoses / messages, mentioning mysterious objects like handles, semaphores, or sockets.
- Strange name / address resolution results (garbled names)
When Winsock corrupts, the networking errors that you may face include unable to surf the Internet with “Page cannot be displayed” error message in Internet Explorer or Firefox even though the DSL/ADSL/cable Internet connection is connected. Sometimes, Windows Firewall/Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) Service is terminated as well.
To Repair and Reset the TCP/IP Winsock in Windows Vista
- Click on the Windows Vista Start button.
- Type Cmd in the Start Search text box.
- Press Ctrl-Shift-Enter keyboard shortcut to run Command Prompt as Administrator. Allow elevation request.
- Type netsh winsock reset in the Command Prompt shell, and then press the Enter key.
- Restart the computer.
The netsh winsock reset command resets the Winsock catalog to the default configuration. This can be useful if a malformed LSP is installed that results in loss of network connectivity. While use of this command can restore network connectivity, it should be used with care because any previously-installed LSPs will need to be re-installed.This command does not affect Winsock Name Space Provider entries.
Note: To check which LSPs installed on your Vista system, use netsh winsock show catalog command.Note that resetting the Winsock using netsh winsock reset catalog command in SP2 removes all the third-party LSPs and restores Winsock to factory default setting. Existing programs that uses their own LSPs, need to be reinstalled again. Example for such programs is Google Desktop Search.