Why am I getting the error "A general network error occurred"?
You can receive the message that a general network error occurred when you are trying to send a message to a computer, username or IP address that does not exist on the network. Or this could occur if the person you are trying to send the message to does not have the messenger service installed. As you can see, this is a general error that Microsoft reports back to us, it could happen for multiple reasons. Try the steps below to resolve the situation.
Microsoft Vista Users: Microsoft removed the capability to send messages using the 'net send' protocol with Microsoft Vista. This means that our Net Send Lite will not be able to send messages to any Microsoft Vista clients. Likewise, our Net Send Lite product will not run on Microsoft Vista.
First, you have to make sure the Messenger service is running on the sending computer AND the target computer. To check if the Messenger service is running do the following:
- Click on Start - Control Panel - Administrative Tools - Services
- Scroll down the list until you see the service named Messenger
- The status column show the current status of this service. It probably has nothing in that column. It should say "Started".
- Also, next to this column is another that says Startup Type. This needs to be Automatic for using Net Send Lite
- Double-click on the Messenger service
- Change the startup type to Automatic and click Apply
- Then click on the Start button to start the Messenger service. Then click OK to close the window.
Once you are sure the Messenger Service is running please try to send a test message to your own username or computername. Then try the target computer again.
If you are running Windows XP SP2, then you will have to manually turn on the Messenger Service. You will also have to DISABLE the Windows Firewall or add the Messenger Service as an "exception".
Please make sure the username, computername or IP Address of the person you want to send a message to is correct. Sometimes the "username" does not get registered correctly on some machines, read this faq that addresses that issue. Try sending a message to the computername or IP Address instead.
If you are using the "feature" Net Send Lite that allows you to Specify the FROM Name, please read this faq that addresses a small issue with sending messages with a Specific FROM Name.
If you still receive the error message, do this:
- Click on Start - Run
- Type in cmd.exe
- From this console type in "net name"
- Listed are the names that your computer can be sent messages TO. (If you get an error message, then your Messenger service is not started correctly. Reboot your system).
- Do this on the computer you want to send messages to as well.
- Try sending a test message to any of the names listed in this cmd.exe window
- If you successfully send a message to yourself, send a message to one of the names listed on the other computer you want to send a message to.
If you have changed your FROM NAME using Net Send Lite and are still having issues. Try going into the OPTIONS of Net Send Lite and clicking the Save button. Then try and send your message.
After that, if you are STILL having problems....try restarting the Messenger service via Right-Click Restart inside of the Services Control Panel. Then also restart the service name "TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper". This is the service that does the name resolution on your username.
The messenger service must be running on the receiving computer to display a pop-up message when the message is received. In addition, the Workstation service must be running on the local computer. NetBIOS is the transport mechanism used between the sender and receiver.
This error is generated from the Microsoft network call we are making. For more information on this error and how Microsoft says to resolve it, please read the following:
Windows XP SP2