How To Reset Your Windows 11 Network Settings (And Why You Might Need To)

Networking issues have long been the bane of PC users, and they're right up there with printer problems in how annoying they can be. Whether you're rocking the latest high-end networking gear or just using what your internet service provider (ISP) gave you, there's an excellent chance you've ended up in a situation where you're at your wit's end trying to make your connection work.

When you've rebooted everything you own, including the 2006 Motorola Razr you still have stuffed in a drawer for some reason, there is something else you can try. A lesser-known trick is resetting your Windows networking settings. It won't work miracles, but sometimes it can fix stubborn connectivity issues. Sometimes a driver install goes awry, or some app messes with your network settings. Sometimes Windows garbles them all on its own. Let's just say that Windows 11 has some pretty common issues.

This used to take a little work, but with Windows 11, Microsoft has finally made it relatively easy. If your Windows PC is steadfastly refusing to connect to your network, a reset may be just what you need to get back online.

It just takes a few clicks

First, let's talk about what the network reset does. It completely removes any network adapters on your computer and their settings. If you have any unique settings, it's wise to jot those down first. You may also need to set up any networking software again, such as a VPN app. If you don't know if you need specific settings, your ISP will have relevant info readily accessible on their website. The majority of people use automatic network settings, so chances are, you won't need to copy anything. 

To reset your network settings in Windows 11, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Start button.
  2. If you see Settings, click that. If you don't see it, type it in, and Windows will show it in the search results.
  3. On the left-hand side, click Network & Internet, then click Advanced Network Settings at the bottom-right.
  4. Click Network Reset about halfway down the page. 
  5. Windows will do its thing, then ask you to restart your computer.
  6. Your network adapters will automatically reinstall upon restart.

Again, this completely wipes your network settings. You might need to set your network to public or private and allow things through the firewall again. If a settings or driver issue were the cause of your connectivity issues, though, there's a good chance you'll be back online again. In the future, you might look into setting up System Restore to roll back changes quickly and easily.