Solved: Windows Can't Communicate With The Device or Resource

Have you ever come across a situation where your Windows operating system throws the error - Windows Can't Communicate With The Device or Resource? Wondering how to solve the issue?

Getting the error message "Windows Can't Communicate With The Device or Resource" is not uncommon. There are several reasons due to which you might see this error on your Windows device. The issue can pop up all of a sudden and can make it rather challenging to understand the reasons and causes for the error.

What Is the "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" Error?

The error "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" typically comes up when your computer is not able to connect to the internet and thus can not perform the Network Diagnostics. When you get this error message, it is a clear indication that the system is not able to connect to the DNS or Domain Name Server. If you are unaware, DNS is equivalent to the contact book or phonebook on the internet and is used to convert the website addresses you enter into the IP addresses.

Your Internet Service Provider generally supplies the primary DNS server of your network connection. You can also have a secondary DNS server if something goes wrong with your primary server. In any case, any issues with your internet settings or errors in your system can make the DNS servers to go haywire and can cause the "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" Error.

What causes the "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" Error?

There can be multiple reasons that can cause an error. However, it has been expected to be caused by three primary reasons -
  • You may have outdated network drivers. Updating drivers can solve the problem.
  • The Internet or other settings may have been poorly configured.
  • The connection issues with the DNS server can also create the recurrence of the error.
It has also been observed that proxy servers configured on your system can also cause the error. Checking if you have enabled any proxy servers on your system and then trying the troubleshooting methods outlined here should be an ideal solution.

How to fix "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" Error?

Well, having understood what can cause the appearance of the error, let us now check out the fixes that can help you get rid of the issues.

Fix 1 - Update Network Driver

The out of date network drivers have been one of the prime reasons that can cause the issue in many cases. Updating the drivers can ideally resolve the issue for you. You can either update the driver manually, through a built-in device manager or even use a third-party tool.

Update the driver manually
If you know the vendor and the model number of your network driver, you should be able to update the driver manually. Simply visit the official website of the manufacturer and check out the updated version of the driver available for your model. Download the driver file and then install it.

Use the built-in Device Manager tool
device managr
This is the simple and easiest method to update your network driver. Here is how you would do it-
  • Search for Device Manager and launch it.
  • On the device manager, pick your network driver.
  • Right click on the driver and pick the option Update Driver.
  • In the next stage, let the device manager search for the updated drivers. If it finds one, it will install the new driver.

You can even use the third-party tools that are specifically designed for driver updates on your systems.

Fix 2 - Change the Adapter Settings

If updating the driver does not solve the problem in your case, it may be worthwhile to give a thought to change your adapter settings. This will change the way you receive the DNS and even IP addresses.
Here is how you can do it -
  • Access Network and Sharing Centre. You can do it in several ways. You may access the Network and Sharing Centre through your Action Centre, through a Windows Search or from Control Panel.
  • Locate the option for Change Adapter settings.
  • Right click on your network and click on Properties
  • Choose the option for Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) and click on Properties.
  • adapter setting
  • Pick the option for Use the following IP address option. Likewise change the DNS server address as well. It would be advisable to use Google DNS server settings or any other open source DNS server options.
  • adapter setting 2
That ideally does the task and you should be able to fix the issue.

Fix 3 - Edit Hosts file

Still not resolved? The next step would be to edit the hosts file. You can follow the steps here below-
  • Move to the folder C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc on your device.
  • Locate the Hosts file and open it in Notepad.
  • Delete all the contents on the file.
  • Save the file
This will help in reconfiguring the Hosts file.

Fix 4 - Clear DNS Cache

Then the 'Windows can't communicate with the device or resource' problem can result from a corrupted DNS cache. Flushing out the DNS cache can help you resolve the error.
Here is how you can flush out the DNS cache -
  • Enter Command Prompt as an administrator.
  • Type in the command ipconfig /flushdns and press ENTER.
  • flush dns
  • Exit Command Prompt as soon as the DNS Cache is cleared.

Fix 5 - 6. Reset Winsock and TCP/IP

If none of the methods solved the issue for you, resetting the Winsock and TCP/IP can ideally help you resolve the issue for you.
Here are the steps that can help you resolve the issue -
  • Enter the Command Prompt as an administrator.
  • Enter the commands here below one by one and press ENTER after each command.
    nbtstat –r
    netsh int ip reset
    netsh Winsock reset
  • That should do it and your Winsock and TCP/IP will be reset.

The Closing Thoughts

Fixing Windows connectivity issues is not an easy task. It can be quite annoying as there is no guarantee that the issue will be resolved with a single step. We assume the fixes outlined here should ideally help achieve the best results in resolving the "Windows Can't Communicate With Device or Resource" Error. Do let us know which of the methods solved the issue for you so that our readers will benefit from your experiences.

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