What can a person do who is having problems accessing websites? | Q&A with Patrick Marshall

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Question: In the last couple of weeks I had a weird issue on Chrome and Firefox (current versions). Some sites, I have to click multiple times to open them or I have to wait several seconds for the page to launch. I am also getting a message that the site cannot be reached.

Also, the DSL Reports speed test tool (http://www.dslreports.com/speedtest) that I have been using for years has failed.

I am receiving my internet from an Xfinity cable through an Arris SB8200, which is connected via Ethernet to the WAN port of my Netgear R7900 wireless router. My office is connected to the router via a CAT 6 Ethernet cable.

I have run Kaspersky Total Security as well as Malwarebytes scans and both do not generate any detected issues.

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I am trying to locate the problem as it is annoying and can sometimes prevent a website from working properly.

I suspect some noise on my cable line, but without installing the new hardware I’m not sure how I can isolate it. The Netgear-SB8200 has performed wonderfully for the few years I have used it and I have no reason to believe it has failed. If I do a speed test on OOKLA, I get a 478mbps download and a 12mbps upload with a 7ms ping, which sounds good.

I am bewildered. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Tom Donnelly, Seattle

A: The general problem appears to be an interruption in your computer’s access to its designated Domain Name System server. What makes it particularly confusing is that the problem is sporadic. This makes the search much more difficult.

Having said that, I would recommend starting with two actions. First, run Microsoft’s troubleshooter, which you can find in Control Panel. It can check for general internet connection problems or problems accessing a specific website.

If that doesn’t fix the problem, I would disable all add-ins in browsers and see if the problem persists. If not, add them one by one until you find the culprit.

Finally, yes, the cause could be a problem in one of the hardware connecting your computer to the Internet. Problems can arise between your computer’s adapter, your router, your Internet service provider, and of course all the cabling (or wireless connections) that tie it all together.

Are other computers in your household connecting to the Internet using the same configuration as your computer? If so, do these have the same problem? Otherwise I would focus on your computer’s adapter and port.

If other computers are having the same problem, I would first unplug all cables and then make sure they are secure. If you have more than one port on the computer that you can plug cables into, try using a different port.

If the problem persists, it’s time to start testing. The first step would be to try a replacement router.

Question: The Windows Antivirus program on my Dell laptop regularly sends a message that it has blocked “C IAstor / DatamgrSvc.exe from making changes to memory”. I would like to unblock it so that I do not continue to receive messages, but I am wondering what that means. It might be from the latest Windows update, but I’m not sure. Internet research gives inconclusive answers, with some saying it could be the result of malware.

Otherwise my laptop works fine, I stay up to date on software and often scan for viruses as well.

Klaus Wergin, Bellingham

A: It’s possible that the message was triggered by a virus or other malware, so yes, it’s a good idea to run a full scan for both.

It is just as likely, however, that a corrupt or incomplete driver will trigger this message. IAStorDataMgrSvc.exe is an executable developed by Intel. If you have Intel devices, I suggest you go to the Intel drivers page to update the appropriate drivers: https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/download-center/home .html. You will want to find Intel devices by scanning Device Manager, which is located in Control Panel, because the device in question may be a device inside your computer. For example, it could be an Intel network card or device.

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