Ask the Expert

Why can I access some Web sites and not others?

I have Windows XP and Internet Explorer 6 with all the latest updates. I use Wi-Fi to connect to a wireless router. Everything connects to the Internet, but I cannot connect to certain Web sites. For example, I can connect to eBay, and, but I cannot connect to,, and a few others.

I have checked my router settings and Windows firewall. I tried to turn the firewall off, but no avail. Any ideas?

Selective Internet access can drive you crazy. Here are some steps you can check to resolve the problem:
  • Check the Hosts & LMHosts files in Windows\System32\Drivers\Etc for entries.
  • From a command prompt try "NSlookup" to see if the names resolve to IP addresses. If not, then they have no DNS entries that you can access and you would need the numbers to connect.
  • Some of the names listed are .uk and those companies may refuse connections to computers from outside their marketing venue.

Editor's note: You may also want to check your security settings in IE (Tools --> Internet options --> Security tab) to make sure that the sites to which you're trying to connect are not on your "Restricted Sites" list.

This was first published in October 2005

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