[Fixed] Browser Keeps Detecting Network Change in Linux – It's FOSS

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For the past several days, I faced a strange issue in my system running Ubuntu Linux. I use Firefox and Brave browsers. Everything was normal in Firefox but Brave keeps on detecting a network change on almost every refresh.
This went on to the extent that it became impossible to use the browser. I could not use Feedly to browse feeds from my favorite websites, every search result ends in multiple refresh, websites needed to be refreshed multiple times as well.
As an alternative, I tried installing Chrome on Ubuntu. The problem remained the same. I installed Microsoft Edge on Linux and yet, the problem persisted there as well. Basically, any Chromium-based browser keep encountering the ERR_NETWORK_CHANGED error.
Luckily, I found a way to fix the issue. I am going to share the steps with you so that it helps you if you are also facing the same problem.
The trick that worked for me was to disable IPv6 in the network settings. Now, I am not sure why this happens but I know that IPv6 is known to create network problems in many systems. If your system, router and other devices use IPv6 instead of the good old IPv4, you may encounter network connection issues like the one I encountered.
Thankfully, it is not that difficult to disable IPv6 in Ubuntu. There are several ways to do that and I am going to share the easiest method perhaps. This method uses GRUB to disable IPv6.
Attention Beginners!
If you are not too comfortable with the command line and terminal, please pay extra attention on the steps. Read the instructions carefully.
Open the terminal. Now use the following command to edit the GRUB config file in Nano editor. You’ll have to enter your account’s password.
I hope you know a little bit about using Nano editor. Use the arrow keys to go to the line starting with GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX. Make its value look like this:
Be careful of the inverted commas and spaces. Don’t touch other lines.
Save your changes by using the Ctrl+x keys. It will ask you to confirm the changes. Press Y or enter when asked.
You have made changes to the GRUB bootloader configuration. These changes won’t be taken into account until you update grub. Use the command below for that:
Now when you restart your system, IPv6 will be disabled for your networks. You should not encounter the network interruption issue anymore.
You may think why I didn’t mention disabling IPv6 from the network settings. It’s because Ubuntu uses Netplan to manage network configuration these days and it seems that changes in Network Manager are not fully taken into account by Netplan. I tried it but despite IPv6 being disabled in the Network Manager, the problem didn’t go away until I used the command line method.
Even after so many years, IPv6 support has not matured and it keeps causing trouble. Disabling IPv6 sometimes improve WiFi speed in Linux. Weird, I know.
Anyway, I hope this trick helps you with the network change detection issue in your system as well.
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Filed Under: Tutorial
Creator of It’s FOSS. An ardent Linux user & open source promoter. Huge fan of classic detective mysteries ranging from Agatha Christie and Sherlock Holmes to Detective Columbo & Ellery Queen. Also a movie buff with a soft corner for film noir.
I saw this problem and similar discussions before. One solution was to look at your DNS servers (/etc/resolv.conf) and see what nameservers are you using, try changing that, since some of them may return incorrect addresses (IPv6 vs IPv4)
Tnx for this solution helped to fix my issues. I know it probably aint the real fix because it’s just working around the problem. Wish the people that know more about linux would actually come up why this happens. My internet is only ipv4 so ipv6 isn’t even really used guess linux sometimes switches to it even though it isn’t connected.
Don’t disable IPv6 but fix the underlying problem.
What should I do to fix this problem in Windows? My mom is so tired of this… Please help ūüôā
You may try disabling IPv6 on Windows as well and see if it works?
Forgot to mention. I run openSUSE Leap 15.2 and have not seen that problem with Chromium or Edge. I’ve been running IPv6 for 11 years.
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