While surfing the web, everyone encounters an error now and then. Some error codes, such as 404, are simple to comprehend. Others, such as “This site cannot be reached,” are even more ambiguous and provide no instructions on how to resolve them.
The “This site can’t be reached” issue in Google Chrome could be caused by a number of factors. Understanding the causes will aid you in determining which troubleshooting method(s) to employ in order to gain access to the website you require.
We’ll look at what causes the “This site can’t be reached” error in this article. Then we’ll go over five solutions.
Let’s get started!
Check out our video tutorial on how to fix the “This Site Can’t Be Found” error.
Contents Table of Contents
What Causes the “This Site Can’t Be Reached” Error
How to Resolve the Error “This Site Cannot Be Reached” (5 Ways)
What Causes the Error “This Site Can’t Be Found”?
One of the most aggravating aspects of the “This site can’t be reached” message is Chrome’s ambiguity regarding what produces it. In addition, the notice may appear alongside a variety of error codes.
If you get the DNS PROBE FINISHED NXDOMAIN problem, for example, you’ll get the notification:
The DNS PROBE FINISHED NXDOMAIN error in Chrome
If your connection times out or you get the ERR CONNECTION RESET code, you’ll get the same error message:
In Chrome, there’s a timeout connection error that says
In Chrome, there is a connection timeout error.
Chrome clearly utilizes the warning “This site can’t be reached” as a catch-all for a variety of issues. The following are the most typical causes:
Errors in the Domain Name System (DNS)
Connections that have expired
Your internet connection has gone down for the count.
Internet, network, or firewall settings that are incorrect
Although Chrome offers a few solutions on each error screen, there are a lot more options for troubleshooting this problem.
How to Fix the “This Site Can’t Be Reached” Error (5 Ways)
This section will lead you through five different approaches to troubleshoot the “This site can’t be reached” error (from easiest to most difficult). Let’s start with the simplest solution, which is to double-check your internet connection.
1. Restart your computer’s internet connection.
Even though you have a working internet connection, if there is a problem with it, the “This site can’t be reached” error can display. Although it may seem overly simplistic, rebooting your router or modem will often immediately repair this issue.
This is the first approach you should consider because resetting your connection just takes a minute or two. Most internet service providers (ISPs) advocate unplugging your router’s power cable and then reconnecting it after a minute. Wait for your internet connection to reset when it’s been turned back on, then attempt re-accessing the webpage.
2. Turn off your firewall and antivirus software.
In many circumstances, the built-in firewall in your operating system (OS) — or whatever software you use — can block pages aggressively and prevent your computer from connecting to them. The simplest method to see if that’s the issue is to turn off your firewall and antivirus software for a few minutes and try accessing the site again.
To stop the built-in firewall, you’ll need to follow a different set of procedures depending on whatever OS you’re running. You can get some ideas from the following articles:
How Do I Turn Off the Windows Firewall?
How to Turn Off the Mac’s Firewall
Your options for stopping your antivirus software will vary depending on the tool you’re using. In our experience, your firewall will only prevent you from loading a website if it is actually unsafe.
If disabling your firewall and antivirus software does not solve the problem, you should attempt a different approach. Before proceeding on, be sure to reactivate both.
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3. Delete the Cache in Your Browser
Chrome saves a lot of data and files from the websites you visit when you’re browsing the web. Your browser saves those files in a local cache so that it doesn’t have to completely refresh webpages every time you view them.
Due to issues with your cached files, you may receive the “This site can’t be reached” message in some circumstances. You’ll need to erase your browser cache to fix the problem.
If you’re using Chrome, go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Clear Browsing Data and select Cached Images and Files from the drop-down menu:
Clearing cached images and files in Chrome, with the “Cached images and files” checkbox selected
Chrome’s cached images and files can be cleared.
Simply select Clear Data, and you’re done. Allow Chrome to finish its work before attempting to reload the website that was causing you trouble before.
4. Clear the DNS Cache
Your operating system saves a lot of information from the websites you visit. It also keeps track of their IP addresses in a database known as the “DNS cache.” That way, anytime you wish to create a connection, your browser doesn’t have to hunt for the same IPs through its DNS server. If this seems familiar, it’s because the DNS cache operates in a similar way as the browser cache, but it caches different sorts of data.
This is a terrific tool that saves time for all users. However, if your operating system caches outdated information for a website, it can cause issues. You’ll need to “flush” or reset your DNS cache in that instance.
It’s a lot easier than it sounds to clear your DNS cache. Go ahead and check out our entire tutorial on clearing your DNS cache on all major operating systems and browsers. If this doesn’t work, you may need to switch DNS servers, which we’ll discuss in the next section.
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5. Make a DNS Server Change
Your ISP allocates DNS servers to your connection automatically. You may, however, set up your internet to utilize a specific list of DNS servers.
You may change the adapter settings in Windows by going to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center, and then selecting Change Adapter Settings:
Changing your network adapter settings on the Network and Sharing Center screen in Windows.
Right-click on your active internet connection and select Properties on the next screen. Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) from the list that appears, and then click Properties once more:
The “Networking” system window in Windows displays connection choices.
Changing the properties of your active connection.
A new screen will appear, including an area where you can provide custom DNS server addresses. You can put the DNS server addresses you want to use in the two fields in the screenshot below:
Using the Internet Protocol Version 4 options box in Windows to change your DNS server settings
Changing the DNS server settings
We’re using Google’s public DNS domains “126.96.36.199” and “188.8.131.52” in the screenshot. There are, however, a plethora of excellent free DNS servers available.
If you’re using macOS, go to System Preferences > Network, choose your network, and then click Advanced to alter your DNS settings. Then go to the DNS tab:
The DNS tab in macOS’s network preferences
The DNS tab in macOS’s network preferences.
By clicking the (+) symbol, you may add the custom DNS servers you want to use. You should be good to go once you’ve configured your new DNS settings and clicked the OK button.
Your internet connection should remain unaffected, but the “This site can’t be reached” error should have vanished. Changing DNS servers may allow you to load webpages faster and access websites that you previously couldn’t.
Although the “This site cannot be reached” problem is inconvenient, it is not difficult to resolve. The error is usually caused by issues with your internet connection or DNS and caching settings.
If you see the “This site can’t be reached” message, there are five things you can do to remedy it, from the easiest to the most difficult:
Your internet connection should be restarted.
Turn off your firewall and antivirus software.
Clear the cache in your browser.
Clear the DNS cache.
Change the DNS servers on your computer.
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