Local Area Connection Active Without Client, Protocol, or Service Installed


In Network properties, Local Area Connection can have no client, service, or protocol installed and still appear ready for use as an active connection.

Uninstalling the Client for Microsoft Networks or clearing the client, services, or protocol check boxes does not make the connection disconnect and go offline.

The following error message may be generated:

There are not protocols installed or enabled. You must install and enable at least one protocol for this connection to work. Do you want to select a protocol now?
Even though the network adapter is active, connectivity is disrupted and other services may stop because there is no installed protocol with which to communicate.


Network devices are "connected" or "disconnected" without relationship to the protocol or client services. Essentially, the network adapter itself is enabled or disabled. The adapter can be enabled appear ready to use, even though there is no network connectivity.


Verify that the appropriate client and protocols are installed:

  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Network and Dial-up Connections.
  2. Click Local Area Connection, and then click Properties on the File menu.
  3. Check the Components checked are used by this connection box. If this box is empty, you must install services and protocols.
  4. Click Install.
  5. Click Add, click the appropriate client, and then click OK.
  6. Click Protocol, click Add, click the appropriate protocol, and then click OK.
  7. Configure the protocol, and then click OK.
  8. Allow the computer to restart and connectivity should be restored. Make additional configuration changes as necessary if connectivity is not initially restored and test again.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article.

More Information

A modem can have no client, service, or protocol installed and be loaded as well. Modems can be active devices, but are offline in Local Area Connections until they become connected when you dial another device.

Article ID: 228317 - Last Review: Feb 27, 2007 - Revision: 1