Broadband (Cable, DSL, Satellite, Fiber Optics)/won't connect to internet



I have a home router Netgear B90-755 installed by frontier some time ago. It's been working great. I received another dell tower dell dimension 300 from a family member and I hooked it up and connected the ethernet wire to router. But it doesn't connect to the internet. I've troubleshooted and talked with frontier who did many tests, ping, ip etc etc but they said it was a problem with the comp.

When I use xp troubleshoot, it doesn't detect the router. In device manager, modem/router is not listed. I am guessing there are drivers missing or something along those lines. Can you point me in the right direction to fix this and what I need to do?

Thank you.

ANSWER: I very much doubt you have a Dimension 300 since Dell didn't make them.  You probably have a Dimension 3000.  That extra zero is very important.

You don't need modem drivers in the PC since your hooking it in with Ethernet.  You need an Ethernet driver.  You should see an Ethernet driver in Device Manager.

You need to rethink this.  For starters you got a computer running XP that is screwed up.  There's a 99% chance that happened because it has a virus.  Frankly your lucky that you didn't get it working or the virus might have trashed your other systems.

What you need to do is what we in the industry call a "nuke and repave"  That is, you obtain a Dell factory recovery CD for your PC.  One should have shipped with the computer when it was new, your family member should have it.  Or go to Ebay.   Then you boot your PC off it destroy every last scrap of data on the Dimension's hard disk, and rewrite everything, completely reinstall Windows, from scratch.  I don't give a rip if there's some illegal copy of MS Office on there.  Just wipe it out.  All of it.  And start over.

Windows XP will autodetect all of the hardware and likely load an Ethernet driver for your PC when it reinstalls.  If it does not then you have to download the Ethernet driver from Dell for your PC on another computer and use a flash drive to copy the driver over to the Dimension.

Then once that is done you immediately download and install the Firefox browser and leave your XP system plugged in and turned on for a couple days.  Make sure in Control Panel to disable power savings so it does not go to sleep at night.  It will automatically download and install updates.  Only when it has completely installed the 287 updates that XP now requires will it be getting close to safe to use on the Internet.  Once it's completely patched use Firefox to install the Avast antivirus software.

And from that point on NEVER, EVER use Internet Explorer on a Windows XP system or your PC will be immediately broken into and virused up.  Always use Firefox.  And if and when Firefox stops supporting XP then quit surfing the web with it.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Ted, thank you for responding. However, there is much I need to respond to. Let's start with the 300, I mistyped, it is indeed a Dell Dim 3000 with windows XP running on it. The XP runs well and funny you should mention Mozilla Firefox because that is exactly what I use on all my computers. Ever since they stopped supporting IE. Once I get this one to connect, it will get the same browser. I also use Avast, which too will be utilized. This comp was working excellent earlier in the year when it was given to said family member, plugged it in and hooked right up to internet. Unfortunately after one using it, it will not now. I don't know what's wrong with it, but I have many programs to clean it up, i.e. Pandasafe, Ccleaner, Glary utilities, Malwarebytes, TDSs killer, driver boot discs, update to bios A22 and a windows xp sp2 disk. I believe the problem may lie with me not seeing anything in the device manager. Could something get "lost" from there? I have more checking to do. Will update after. Thanks Ted.

Nuke and repave!  It is faster to do this and install all the patches than to try troubleshooting it.  Working on a system that has been trashed by a virus is like working on a filthy engine on an old car.  You may get it running again so it can go out for a bit and collect more filth but it won't be a pleasant experience.

Your family member opened IE and hit a website with it, simple as that.  Immediately after that it broke.

Broadband (Cable, DSL, Satellite, Fiber Optics)

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Ted Mittelstaedt


I will answer questions on the following kinds of High Speed Internet connectivity; ISDN, Frame Relay, dedicated T1, higher speeeds such as DS3/OC3, wireless such as 802.11 and DSL. No questions on dialup V90 or Cable access. I can also answer questions on many types of Cisco routers, and a number of other brands of business routers as well.


I am the technical manager of Internet Partners Inc. an ISP.

I've written a book titled "The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide" published by Addison Wesley

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