How to Perform a netsh Winsock Reset on Windows (and Why)?

Problems with your internet connection can be aggravating and difficult to troubleshoot. It’s conceivable that a Winsock issue is to blame. Fortunately, rebooting Winsock is straightforward.

Why Might You Need to Reset Winsock?

Winsock is an application programming interface (API) that connects programs, such as a web browser, to underlying communication protocols, such as TCP/IP. Winsock holds critical parameters for how those apps and communications interact in a database known as the Winsock Catalog.

It is possible that the Winsock catalog will become damaged as a result of malware or by mistake. Regardless of how the corruption occurs, apps on a single PC are likely to fail to connect to the internet. You may see generic, useless errors stating that your program was “unable to connect,” or you may receive more precise error messages relating to sockets.

If other devices on your network are having connectivity problems, you should first investigate your modem and router.

How to reset Winsock?

Fortunately, restarting Winsock is frequently less difficult than correctly identifying most Winsock problems.

Choose Start, put “cmd” into the search bar, and then click “Run as administrator.” If you want, you may also use Windows PowerShell. Just keep in mind to execute it as administrator.

Instead, in Windows 11, open the Windows Terminal program. (But, once again, make sure to execute it as administrator.)

Hit Enter or Click "Open" to launch Command Prompt

Enter netsh winsock reset in Command Prompt. If it works, the message “Successfully reset the Winsock Catalog.” will appear. To complete the reset, you must restart the computer.”

Successfully reset Winsock in Command Prompt

You must restart your computer after resetting Winsock. Because a command-line window with administrator access is already open, type shutdown /r /t 0 into the prompt and press Enter. Because your computer will restart instantly, save any work before performing that program.

After your computer has rebooted, try the programs or services that were having issues. If it still does not work, you could attempt some further troubleshooting procedures.

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