The PS4 NW-31200-6 error comes up often with the error message “Failed to update the system software due to a connection error”. It means the PS4 cannot get online to install an update to the PS4 system. What options are there to solve this?
The first thing to do for this error is to check the status of the PlayStation Network. It may be down and in this case it is simply a matter of waiting for it to come back online again.
Otherwise the best solution to this problem is to either improve the connection between your router and PS4 (quick resets, power cycles, using wired connections) or else download the update on another device which has a better connection and upload to your PS4 via USB. Deactivating and then reactivating your PS4 can also occasionally fix this problem.
At the end of the day this error most often boils down to not having a strong enough internet connection on your PS4 to download an update, so you can either a) Make your connection better so you can install the update, or b) download the update on another device and transfer it to your PS4 via a USB.
Let’s look at these two solutions in turn, as well as a deactivation method which can also work on rare occasions to fix this error.
Solution #1 – Update Your PS4 System Software via USB
If your PS4’s internet connection is not strong enough to download the update, and you can’t make your PS4’s connection to your router better (see Solution #2 below), then a way around this error is to download the System Software Update onto another device like a laptop or PC which does have a good connection, and then reupload it onto the PS4 directly using a USB stick.
Here are the general steps to do this:
- Plug a USB stick into a device which does have a good internet signal.
- Log into your PSN account with the email and password online – you can do this through the Playstation site as well as on the PS4 itself.
- Download the latest version of the System Software onto the USB stick. It is a good idea to create a separate folder for it on the USB.
- Turn on your PS4 and go to Settings…..System Software Update. Make sure the USB is plugged into a port on your PS4.
- Select the Update Via USB option.
- Select the System Update file from your USB when prompted and perform the update.
This is a good short term solution to at least get your software updated, and this can in some cases give you a better signal once it is installed.
However, longer term it is better to make sure your PS4 has a more reliable and solid connection to your router to prevent these error messages. Lets look at this in more detail now.
Solution #2 – Improve The Connection Between Your Router & PS4
This NW-31200-6 error often occurs because the Wi-Fi connection between the console and PS4 is too weak and inconsistent to allow a proper connection to install updates and play online.
The PS4 is notoriously fickle with it’s Wi-Fi connection, and gamers connecting wirelessly do get a lot of error messages resulting from a weak signal. Here are some steps to take to try and fix this problem:
- Move your PS4 and router closer together.
- Quick reset your router and PS4.
- Power cycle your router and PS4, unplugging them for 5-10 minutes before restarting them.
- Move onto a wired connection if possible.
- Disable some devices if you have a lot of users connecting on WiFi all at once.
These are more basic quickfire steps and may not really address the issue in some cases. Here are some more advanced home networking solutions to try and get a better connection between your PS4 and router.
1. Quality of Service (QoS) – Busy home networks can often cause a weak Wi-Fi signal, if lots of devices are competing on wireless connections for the same bandwidth. This can lead to signal drop outs and poor connections, prompting these error messages.
Quality of service or QoS is a setting available on some routers that allows you to prioritize your PS4 on the home network by instructing the router to process it’s traffic demands first, hopefully avoiding issues with a poor signal and low bandwidth when others are also using the internet.
See here for our full guide on how to configure QoS for better gaming. Unfortunately this setting is not available on all routers.
2. Static IP – Go to Settings….Network….Test Internet Connection on your PS4. If the results show that internet connection fails even at the very first step – cannot find an IP address, then you can try setting a static IP as per Solution #3 of this article.
This allows you to reserve a very specific custom IP address for your PS4 and avoid any address conflict issues you may be having, which may in rare cases be causing this error. Ignore this option if the connection test succeeds at the IP address step, but fails later on at the internet connection or PSN sign in steps, since this indicates a different problem.
3. DMZ Settings – Another option to get a better connection is to place your PS4 in the DMZ section of your router, which removes all firewall filtering and fully opens it up to the internet for the best connection possible to servers and other gamers.
This is a shortcut way of port forwarding and is great if you have restrictive security or firewall settings on your home network which may be preventing you installing updates or connecting to servers.
See our article on DMZ for a full guide on how to apply these settings to your PS4.
4. Powerline Adapters – We mentioned above about getting onto a wired connection if possible, since they are always much more stable and reliable than Wi-Fi connections for gaming, avoiding the problems with congestion and signal drop out that are common with wireless.
However, what about PS4 users who are too far away from their router to be running a long cable directly down to it? This is a where a powerline adapter comes in as a next best solution, delivering a wired connection using wall socket adapters with ethernet ports built in.
Powerline adapter kits consist of a pair of wall plugs which are connected to your router and PS4, and use the existing electrical wiring of the house to deliver a wired internet connection without the need for DIY or long cables.
They are an ideal solution for gamers who are stuck on Wi-Fi and tired of having these connection problems for which the PS4 is known. See the video below for a quick demo of how powerline adapters work.
Solution #3 – Deactivate & Reactivate Your PS4
Another solution which has been known to work for this error code has been to deactivate and then reactivate your PS4 system. This sometimes works if the NW-31200-6 error comes up with a message saying “connection to the server failed”, or something similar.
Here are the general steps for this:
- Deactivate your PS4 as per the instructions in this article.
- Then reactivate your PS4 as Primary as per this article.
- Then power cycle your PS4 and router by fully powering them off and unplugging for 5 minutes before restarting them.
- Please note, that once you run through this deactivate/reactivate process once, you will not be able to de-activate that console again for at least 6 months.
If anyone has tried all of the suggestions above for this error code and still can’t get it resolved, leave a note in the comments below.