Can't access one specific site
September 9, 2010 11:25 PM   Subscribe

How do I refresh someone else's IP? I can't load a specific site I usually access every day when I am connected to my home ISP, although I can get to the site when I'm at work and on my smartphone. Absolutely NONE of my browsers can load the site, even those which I've never uised to visit the site before. When I contacted my ISP tonight, the tech said that he could access the same site from his computer, so it doesn't appear to be a DNS issue there. I have no problems loading any other sites on my browsers. What gives?

I can't successfully ping the site, and when I run tracert, I can get as far as the IP my tech support says is just short of the web site's IP (he can run tracert successfully from his computer all the way to the site, which also loads in his browser). When I emailed the site owner, I was told to refresh the IP. So how do I do that? (Releasing and renewing my own IP obviously isn't the answer).
posted by The True Wheel to Computers & Internet (14 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: (Stupid search and replace. IP address, not IP.)
posted by The True Wheel at 11:27 PM on September 9, 2010

Best answer: Have you tried the basics of flushing the DNS cache, testing a different DNS server (try Google's at or, and restarting your modem? I'm assuming that site owner was telling to release the IP lease on your account and then renew it which depending on how your ISP handles things, you'd get a new IP but that doesn't sound like it would fix the problem.
posted by cgomez at 11:41 PM on September 9, 2010

Best answer: As cgomez says.. to flush your DNS cache, on Windows, type 'ipconfig /flushdns' into the command line. Also try accessing the site by entering its IP address directly instead of the domain name. You can get that from someone who can trace the route all the way to the site.
posted by hungrysquirrels at 11:45 PM on September 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Best answer: So quick test. Go to and run an nslookup for the site. Then on your machine run nslookup See if they are different.

If they are try putting the ip address from directly into your browser. This really isn't a definitive test though since many people use "name-based" site serving which means that multiple sites can use the same IP. But if it works you know you have a DNS issue.

Then you need to try some alternative name servers.

Also completely stupid check make sure you don't have some funky stuff in your hosts file which is causing you issues.
posted by bitdamaged at 11:54 PM on September 9, 2010

Best answer: > When I emailed the site owner, I was told to refresh the IP.

I've been in ISP tech support for a decade, and "refresh the IP" doesn't actually mean anything.

1. Obtain the site's current IP address. Ping the site's name. Does the name resolve to the correct IP address? If no, flush your DNS cache. If yes, continue.

2. Where does your tracert fail? Does that machine live in your ISPs network? If yes, call them back and whine until they transfer you to third tier support. If no, figure out if it belongs to the network the site is on. If it is, call the site owner and tell him he needs to nag his host.

What's the URL? We can test it from our various locations, if you tell us. :-)
posted by goblinbox at 11:57 PM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Damn it, here's a bunch of great answers in the middle of the night in just a few minutes. I love geeks.

Restarting my modem and router did the trick, thanks. But I appreciate the tips on diagnosing and fixing the problem by typing instead of going up and down stairs, so this is a useful bit of knowledge stored away for next time. So YOU get a best answer! And YOU get a best answer! And YOU! And YOU!
posted by The True Wheel at 12:07 AM on September 10, 2010

The magic of reboot never fails to amaze me.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 4:16 AM on September 10, 2010

The site owner was telling to you refresh your IP address, not theirs. Sounds like that IP had been blocked at some point in the past.
posted by gjc at 5:17 AM on September 10, 2010

Response by poster: No, my IP address hadn't been banned or blocked. I had tried releasing and renewing my own IP address (just in case) before I posted the question, and it didn't work.

I'm surprised my tech support guy didn't ask me to reboot (as is usual in any call I make to them), but I think he wanted to use his new toy that allowed him to control my computer and run tracert on it. After getting the results, he told me to contact the site owner to ask him to check things on his end, as tracert was failing on an IP address not on our network. This got me the brief and somewhat unclear response from the site owner.

Once again: the magic of reboot. Live it! Learn it! (And a few typed disagnostics as well, of course).
posted by The True Wheel at 6:28 AM on September 10, 2010

I've seen this when a small, independent site changes hosting companies. Some DNS servers will get the new information immediately, but others will retain the old entry until it expires. This is a pretty common mistake for novice web site owners, who may only test the new hosting company on their own computer and thus never hear about the problem. If you can somehow get the right IP address for the site (maybe from the tech support guy), you can just type that address into your browser. Otherwise, the only thing you can do is wait a couple of days for all the DNS servers to update.
posted by miyabo at 8:48 AM on September 10, 2010

testing a different DNS server (try Google's at or

Google's public DNS servers are and
posted by zixyer at 9:11 AM on September 10, 2010

Wow. this sounds exactly like my problem: Does my WRT54G hate Godaddy Hosted websites The only way I was able to get past this problem was to spoof my MAC address to force my ISP to give me a new IP address, then it immediately started working. The same thing happened a few weeks later, spoof MAC, get new IP, and it started working immediately.

Calling my ISP and godaddy both denied they were blocking my IP, but those incidences and resolutions say otherwise. Its possible that the blocking was happening at a router level or such that godaddy may not have been aware of. My suspicion is that since i have a surveillance camera that uploads motion detect jpgs every few minutes 24/7, godaddy may be interpreting that as a DDOS, and blocking it, but thats my tinfoil theory.
posted by edman at 10:38 AM on September 10, 2010

What exactly are you calling a modem? Is it actually a router? If you do ipconfig /all you'll see what DNS servers you are using. If its something like or then its a little caching DNS server in your router. Depending on its config it might be caching DNS information for too long, thus you get stale DNS information that's wrong.

Why this is affecting one site? Most likely they have some kind of dynamic IP setup that relies on constantly changing the DNS record. If that's not the case his TTL is too long. Regardless, switching to the google DNS servers will probably clear this up and they're configured correctly. If that doesn't do it, then the webmaster of that site is to blame.
posted by damn dirty ape at 12:26 PM on September 10, 2010

@edman Calling my ISP and godaddy both denied they were blocking my IP, but those incidences and resolutions say otherwise.

Not necessarily - getting a new IP via DHCP also pulls in the IPs of your DNS resolvers. If the ones you were using went bad or had stale data updating your IP could have also switched your DNS resolvers to more recent (fixed) servers.
posted by bitdamaged at 8:16 AM on September 11, 2010

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