Automatic Metric: Windows 7 Laptop Will Only Connect to Huawei E5372 on UK Three Network, OR the Wired Home Network
Windows 8 Computers Work Fine Though!
Automatic Metric is the place to be!
I have two networks essentially:
- The “normal” wired network (gigabyte ethernet) that links all computers and printers through the Cisco Router.
- The temporary mobile network that allows the PCs to connect to the internet while we are in temporary accommodation. It’s a Huawei E5372.
After setting up WiFi on the PCs, access to the Ethernet network disappeared – but only for the Windows 7 computer!!!
This meant that file transfers, backup etc between the machines, ceased, as well as access to the wired printer. The printer worked fine when connected through its USB connection. It has no WiFi.
In the same way, disconnecting the wireless enabled connectivity to the wired home network (Ethernet).
I searched and many forums had similar “fixes”, none of which worked. e.g.
- Remove IPv6 leaving just IPv4 on the network adapters.
- Remove network devices completely and re-install.
- Try new or updated drivers.
- Reboot each time.
However, two very small items appeared and worked for me!! They are network settings, deeply buried and that I’ve never set before.
It’s the same in both Win 7 & 8. Maybe even Vista, but as we know, Vista Means Death. I did two places that got the Win7 machine to connect to the web through the Mobile WiFi dongle and to the home, wired and routed, network.
- Adapters and Bindings
- Automatic Metric
So Adapters and Bindings…
- Network and Sharing Center
- Change Adapter Settings
- Advanced on the menu. (Alt+N)
- Advanced Settings
- Adapters and Bindings tab
- Set WiFi at the top
Oh Woe Is Me Again!
At this point, connectivity was still not restored, but it was an interesting setting, totally hidden in Win8!
And Automatic Metric…
This is the killer setting that worked!!! You need to do this twice:
- once for the Wireless network adapter
- and again for the wired Ethernet adapter
Now do the second, Ethernet adapter. Follow the previous method. However, this time,
One commenter on the forum I saw (link to be done) said that just setting the order to 1,2,3 etc wasn’t sufficient. Setting a large gap between interface metrics did the trick, which is what I did.
What Is Automatic/Interface Metric?
Well, you can do this search, or probably the best answer comes from Microsoft, here.
It sets the priority of network interface access, lowest number first, on an individual machine.
In my case, weirdly, the Windows 8 machines had no difficulty. The single Windows 7 laptop fell over and caused me immense hair loss until I stumbled across the settings which I have never, ever touched in 17 years of computing and the web!