Failed to obtain IP address – Troubleshooting and Fix

The article explains the steps to follow to troubleshoot and fix the error, failed to obtain IP address.

failed to obtain ip address

Why you receive this error

The device which triggers this message, which would be your laptop, desktop , smart tv or mobile devices is attempting to obtain an IP address from a DHCP server on the network. The DHCP server is configured on the network to assign dynamic IP address to devices on the network. This error can be triggered if it is a problem with the connecting device or an issue with the DHCP server. The following checks can be used to analyze the root cause of the issue.

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Check 1 – DHCP system

Check if the system on which the DHCP server is configured is up and running. This could be your wireless router or any other device which you have configured as the DHCP server. Ping the system from any device on the network. If you are getting a response , then the system is up.




Check 2 – DHCP service

Check if the DHCP service is up and running on the device on which it is configured. This can be tested by checking from another device on the network configured as a DHCP client and verifying if its receiving an IP address from the DHCP server. If yes, the dhcp service is up and running. If the IP address is not received, then it is recommended to reconfigure the DHCP server.

Check 3 – DHCP Scope

Every DHCP server has a scope. If the scope is limited, the DHCP server would not assign IP address to users out of the scope. For example, if your DHCP scope is limited to assign IP address to 10 users and a 11th user attempt to connect , the DHCP server would not lease out the IP address. The DHCP scope has to be increased if this is the issue.

Check 4 – IP address configuration on the client

Ensure that the the TCP/IP address configuration on the client is configured to obtain IP address automatically and not static. if it is configured as static, the DHCP service on the client would not work and this would create the error.

Check 5 – TCP/IP adapter physical or driver problem

Configure the TCP/IP adapter on the client with a static IP address. If you are unable to do this, then the adapters driver could be corrupted. Reinstall the driver. If the network adapter is not being recognized in spite of driver update, it could be a physical issue with the card.

Check 6 – Wireless signal strength

If the client is a wireless device, check the wifi signal strength. Poor wifi strength can cause dhcp requests to fail. Ensure that there is good signal strength in the required location.

The above 6 checks would help to troubleshoot and fix the problem.

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