Why Does My Computer Always Say Cannot Find Server?

By William Nagel

If you’re surfing the internet and constantly receiving a “Cannot Find Server” or “Server DNS not Found” error, there are a number of things that may be preventing you from reaching the site you want to visit. A “Cannot Find Server” error is generally due to an error on the server of the website you want to visit, but occasionally you will receive the error message when your computer has a problem.

No Internet Connection

If you do not have an active Internet connection, your computer will be unable to find the server it wants to locate. Check the Ethernet cables connected to your computer and make sure they are securely plugged into the Ethernet ports of both your computer and your modem. If you use a wireless Internet connection, make sure that your computer is connected to the wireless local area network.

ISP is Down

If your computer’s connections are fine, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) may be experiencing a service outage. If your ISP is down, it will be unable to direct your computer to the sites you want to visit. Call the customer service line of your ISP and ask them if there is a service outage in your area. If there is a service outage, you will need to wait until service is restored before you can browse the Internet.

Host Server is Down

Many “Cannot Find Server” errors occur when the server that hosts the website you want to visit crashes or is shut down for maintenance. When a server is offline, your computer cannot be connected to it and it cannot display the website you want to visit. Major websites and corporate Web pages lose money when their websites are offline, so most maintenance will take a relatively short amount of time to perform or will be performed late at night when most visitors are asleep. Wait 20 to 30 minutes if you suspect that the host server is down, and then attempt to visit the website again.

Wrong Address

If you enter the wrong address into your Web browser’s address bar, it will not take you to the website you want to visit. When a website doesn’t exist, your browser will return a “Cannot Find Server” error. Check the address you entered into the address bar for typos to avoid this error.

Browser Security Issue

Sometimes, your Web browser itself is at fault. Updates released for your browser may unintentionally cause a “Cannot Find Server” error on certain websites. Sites that use SSL security certificates can also cause problems in both Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox. Errors caused by the Internet browser are rare, so check the support documentation for your browser to determine if your browser is at fault.