How to Fix IP Address Starting With 169.254

If your system suddenly has an IP address starting with 169.254 then it is certain that you will have no connection to the internet and neither to any network resource you previously had. Having this IP address is almost as good as having no IP address. In other words, you can say your system is simply cut off from the network.

When you are on a network, using the internet or accessing any other network resource, and if you are not given an identity manually, a Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server is responsible for giving you a unique identity on that network automatically when you connect to the network. That identity is called an IP address, which will be usually something starting like 192.168.X.X. In a work place, the DHCP server is usually on a separate computer called a server. Whereas in a home setup or a small office setup (SOHO), DHCP server is managed internally by your Router.

If for some reason you lose the connection to the network, then of course your system will not be able to find a DHCP server to get an IP address automatically. So, in this situation, Windows will automatically assign an IP address to itself starting with 169.254. This procedure is called Automatic Private Internet Protocol Addressing (APIPA).

Common cause for this to happen is when the DHCP server stops responding when you send a request for an IP address. So usually, the issue resides on your Router or Wireless Access Point side. In some cases, the cause of this issue has also been attributed to Windows itself. If Windows fail to fetch an appropriate IP address in time, acting on its APIPA protocol, it will assign itself the IP.

In this guide, i will walk you through various methods to fix the issue. Follow each method in the listed order, until the issue is resolved.

Method 1: Power Cycle Your Router

A power cycle will do a soft reset, terminate and re-initiate all connections to devices connected to the Router.

Turn the Computer that has the issue off.

Unplug power from your Router/Wireless Access Point & Modem. Leave it unplugged for a minute and then plug the power back to turn them back on. Power up your computer and now check if the proper IP Address is assigned.

After following this method, if you have other devices connected to this router check them out as well to see what network are they on, if they’re also unable to connect then the issue points to a hardware fault with your router and it will need to be replaced. BUT there is no harm in following the other Methods below as well.

Check if the IP is gone. If not, move on to the next solution. You may also check this guide out which has scripted commands to reset network components.

Method 2: Request New IP through CMD

Press the Windows key, type cmd. Right click on cmd in the search results and click Run as Administrator. In the black command prompt window, type the following commands and press Enter after each.

ipconfig /release

ipconfig /renew

Test to see if the issue is now resolved.


Method 3: Check your Router/Wireless Access Point Settings

Log in to your router or modem and make sure that DHCP is enabled.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.