How To “netsh winsock reset” To Fix Windows Network Problems?

Windows operating system uses Winsock technology in order to maintain network and internet communication and connection. During the usage of the Winsock especially in heavy usage, it may create network and internet connection problems because of the crash. In this tutorial, we will learn how to reset the network adaptor and TCP/IP network stack via Winsock.

What Is Winsock?

Winsock is a DLL or library used to run network and internet communication. Winsock DLL is named wsock32 and provides all function related Winsock. Winsock is a simple socket which will operate on OSI reference mode 7 in order to create network sockets.

Reset Winsock

Winsock is an operating system level mechanism that operates at a low level. In order to reset the Winsock, we need the Administrator privileges. As we will use the command line to reset Winsock the command line interface like MS-DOS, PowerShell should be opened with Administrator privileges. The following steps can be executed in Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10 and Windows Server versions. The following steps will work on Windows XP with Service Pack versions 2 and 3. For Windows 8 and Windows 10, we can simply type msdos which will list MS-DOS command prompt with some menu list. We will click to the Run As Administrator like below which will open the MS-DOS command prompt with Administrative rights.

Open Command Line For Windows 10 and 8
Open Command Line For Windows 10 and 8

For Windows 7 and previous Windows versions, we will type cmd to the Start Menu which will list the cmd like below. Then we will right-click to the cmd and click to the Run As Administrator which will open the MS-DOS command line with Administrator privileges.

Open Command Line For Windows 7
Open Command Line For Windows 7

In some cases, the following screen will appear to ask User Account Control. Simply click to Yes.

Now we can type the netsh command with winsock reset parameters which will reset the Winsock.

> netsh winsock reset
Reset Winsock with "netsh winsock reset" Command
Reset Winsock with “netsh winsock reset” Command

If the command is completed successfully we will be informed that Successfully reset the Winsock Catalog. In order to complete the reset we should restart the computer.

List Winsock Catalog Entries

We can also list the Winsock catalog before or after the reset with the netsh winsock show catalog. This will list information about different socket types with information like Description, Version, Protocol, Address Family, etc.

> netsh winsock show catalog
List Winsock Catalog Entries
List Winsock Catalog Entries

Reset Network Adaptor or Winsock Reset or Comms Reinstall

Well, we can hear the “Reset Network Adaptor” or “Winsock Reset”  or “Comms Reinstall”  terms. Actually all of them describe the same thing which is resetting Winsock.

Alternatively, Reset TCP/UDP with “netsh int ip reset”

If the resetting Winsock does not work as you expect and the problem is not solved we can try to reset the TCP/UDP stack which can also solve network-related problems.

> netsh int ip reset

Why use “netsh winsock reset”?

netsh winsock reset command mainly used to reset the Winsock catalog back to default settings in a clean state. Resetting the Winsock catalog is generally the last solution about the network and internet related problems. Below are some specific reasons in order to reset Winsock.

  • Internet and Network related problems after removing adware, spyware, virus, worm, trojan horse,  backdoor, etc.
  • Access problems to web sites and web pages.
  • DNS lookup and related problems.
  • DHCP or IP assignment problems.
  • IP renewing problem.
  • DHCP errors.
  • Network and internet speed problems
  • When the “Limited or no connectivity” error occurs

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