Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there a way to make windows stop dropping the interface every time a cable comes unplugged? I don't care about those little balloons that pop up when the cable state changes, as annoying as those are. The specific problem is that when a cable is out, while you can still see the network adapter name/properties in the 'Network Connections', the OS seemingly unbinds the IP address from the port, as evidenced by the output of ipconfig.

This wreaks havoc on certain network utilities, such that once the cable is back in place, I then have to go re-tune their settings to get things back to normal. Ideally, the IP address would not evaporate, Windows would just list the interface as 'no link' or something.

This gets especially ugly when it happens on a machine with two nics; for example I only want my TFTP server on one network, but if Windows happens to have taken the IP address away when my TFTP server is started (cable temporarily out), the TFTP server might acquire the IP address of the nic that is up.

share|improve this question
Which version of Windows? Is it Windows 1, Windows 7 or something in between? No one solution can apply to all of them. – John Gardeniers Oct 9 '09 at 23:55
sorry. should have said. XP. – JustJeff Nov 10 '09 at 21:55
up vote 1 down vote accepted

You want to disable "Media Sensing" on the interface in question.

The summary: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters

Add: Name: DisableDHCPMediaSense Data type: REG_DWORD (Boolean) Value: 1

share|improve this answer
exactly what i was looking for! – JustJeff Mar 11 '10 at 2:10

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.