Article ID : 00023900 / Last Modified : 08/29/2016

How to troubleshoot connectivity issues with a built-in modem.

    1. Restart the computer and verify that the telephone line is plugged into the Line jack on the modem. Some communications applications may work with the line plugged into the wrong jack. Others such as Dial-Up Networking will not.

      NOTE: A network jack can be mistaken for a phone jack. Ensure that the telephone line is connected to the modem and not to the network jack.

    2. Verify that the modem is connected directly to the phone jack on the wall. Devices such as splitters, fax machines, surge protectors or phones that are in the line between the modem and the phone jack can create issues.

      NOTE: If the only item between the modem and the wall jack is a surge protector, and the modem works correctly when connected directly to the wall jack, a new surge protector may be needed.

    3. Attempt to connect to another Internet Service Provider or BBS. This will determine if the problem is with the original service.

      NOTE: If able to connect to a different ISP with no issues, the problem is with the original service provider and you will need to contact that service provider for additional troubleshooting of their service.

    4. Ensure the modem is configured for tone dialing unless pulse-dialing is the only available setting for the area.
    5. Because the modem drivers may be corrupt, remove and reinstall the modem drivers .


      • A new modem driver may be available.
      • If a new modem was installed in the computer, ensure that the current operating system drivers for the modem have been installed. Refer to the modem manufacturer for driver information.
    6. Ensure Dial-Up Networking is installed and configured properly.
    7. Verify any special features on the phone line such as Voice Messaging or Voice-Activate Speed Dial, these features are provided by the phone company and may interfering with the modem detection of the dial tone.
    8. If the Disable Call Waiting option is enabled for the Dial-Up Networking connection, and the wrong disable code has been selected or the phone line does not support Call Waiting or Call Waiting disable, the modem will not connect. Configure the Call Waiting options in Dial-Up Networking.
    9. If the modem is dialing a local number determine whether the area code is required. In some locales it may be required. These settings are changed in the Connection Properties.
    10. The modem may be attempting to connect at a higher speed than the remote system may consistently allow or the phone lines may support. Configure the modem for a lower maximum connect speed.
    11. Ensure there are no other communication programs running. For example, if a speaker phone icon on the task bar is open while connecting with the ISP an error message will be displayed because of the same communication port assignment.
    12. Ensure the problem is not due to any third party hardware. Remove or disconnect all third party devices and added hardware and attempt the connection again.
    13. There may be an issue with unacceptable telephone line noise.
    14. Use the System Restore procedure  to restore the system back to a point when the modem last worked properly.
    15. Refer to the Internet Service Provider for valid phone numbers. There may be an issue with the Dial-up Server, incorrect configuration, parameters or codes to connect at this time.

    The troubleshooting steps listed above should resolve your issue. If you have completed all of the steps and the issue is not resolved, service may be required. Go to Product Repair.