The NW-31201-7 error message sometimes pops up for PS4 users, with a message saying “Could not connect to the network/server” or something similar. Sometimes it happens only when playing particular games online; other times PS4 users find they can’t get online at all.
The first thing to check when you get this error message is the status of the PlayStation Network. If it is currently down because it is undergoing maintenance, then there is no way around this; you’ll have to wait until it’s finished to get back online.
If it’s a particular game’s servers that seem to be struggling, whilst other games are fine, then again it is usually a case of waiting to the problems are resolved at their end.
If the PSN is down, but isn’t scheduled to be down (ie. it has server issues), then you will probably also have to wait until it’s fixed. There is a clever trick you can try with MTU values that has been known to work in getting around PSN outages particularly in late 2014. See the MTU solution of this article for a run down of how to do this; this may work in very rare instances of this error code.
The best way to solve the NW-31201-7 error is to adjust your home network and your PS4 connection settings to try and restore a decent Wi-Fi signal. Manually changing your DNS settings to Google DNS (22.214.171.124; 126.96.36.199) is also a common solution to this problem, as well as moving onto a wired connection and fully unplugging and resetting your router and console for a few minutes.
Let’s run through some of the more common solutions to this problem in more detail.
Main Solution – Manually Configuring Your PS4’s DNS Settings
If you are getting this NW-31201-7 error message, but PSN is not down to the best of your knowledge, then the first thing to do is play around with some settings on your PS4 to get a better connection. Manually changing your DNS settings seems to be a very common way of resolving this error message, and appears to work in well over half the cases looking into this.
Here are the steps to do this:
- Go to Settings….Network……Set Up Internet Connection
- Select Wi-Fi or LAN depending on your connection. Plug into your router and use wired if the wifi doesn’t work.
- Select Custom setup
- Run through all the settings as they are, without changing them, until you get to DNS Settings
- For DNS Settings, switch to Manual
- Input these Google DNS servers: Primary: 188.8.131.52 Secondary: 184.108.40.206
- You can also use other free DNS servers; here are two common pairs:
- Cloudflare DNS – Primary 220.127.116.11 Secondary 18.104.22.168
- Open DNS – Primary 22.214.171.124 Secondary 126.96.36.199
- If one pair don’t work, try another pair. See our article on the best DNS for gaming for more information.
- See just below for a video demo of how to do this.
This solution seems to work in a lot of cases. Just make sure you are using common sense in selecting the appropriate option when configuring your connection. The guy in the video above picks LAN cable because that’s what he’s using; obviously don’t pick this option if you are on wireless, choose WiFi instead and proceed from there.
However, let’s go through some more general things you can do on your home network to get a stronger connection between your router and PS4.
Other Solutions to Error Code NW-31207-1
If you find that you cannot even gain an initial connection to your router from your PS4, or it can’t even obtain an IP address, then it is a sign there are more fundamental connection problems on your home network that need solving. If you are on WiFi, the signal may be too weak to even get a connection.
Here are some quick things to try to restore a usable connection:
- Move your router and PS4 closer together.
- Quick reset your console and router.
- Hard reset your console and router, fully unplugging them for 10-15 minutes before switching them back on.
- Make sure your router is updated to the latest firmware.
- Make sure your PS4 is updated to the latest version. If not, try updating your PS4 in Safe Mode as per this article.
- Preferably move off Wi-Fi altogether and onto Wired/LAN connections. If you are too far away from the router to run cables direct, then consider using a powerline adapter as an alternative to WiFi, which often drops out over distance.
- If you need to stay on wireless, try connecting to another network, such as a mobile hotspot and then connecting back to your own WiFi. Also try connecting by LAN, then switching back to WiFi setup once the LAN cable has been recognized and an IP address given. Leave the cable plugged in until you re-establish a WiFi connection.
- Try also restoring Default Settings on your PS4 in Safe Mode – see this video. You need to select Option 4.
- If there are a lot of devices using the WiFi, try disabling some of them, or using Quality of Service settings to manage traffic and prioritize your PS4 on the home network.
- Try configuring your PS4 with a static IP address as per Solution #3 of this article.
- Check whether other people can also get online on your home network. The internet might be down in your wider area, or your ISP may be having some issues. Your router may also need sending in for repair or replacement.
If you still can’t get online after trying literally all these options, then leave a comment below. If you get another error code instead, then check out our PS4 Error Codes Index to see if we have it covered.
Use Wired Connections For Gaming Whenever Possible
A common denominator of so many of these causes to these PS4 error messages is a weak or unreliable connection between the console and the router caused by using Wi-Fi. This is why it is much more preferable to be on a wired ethernet connection if at all possible, since it always provides a better connection than wireless.
The benefits of being on a wired connection are numerous. In brief, it tends to deliver higher bandwidth, lower latency and more consistency than Wi-Fi, which tends to drop out over distance and lead to lag spikes and connection issues like the NW-31201-7 error.
Being on a wired connection also avoids many of the problems of network congestion that result when lots of devices are trying to connect at the same time on a single wireless network.
Ethernet connections offer a unique, uncluttered communication channel with your router, as opposed to WiFi bands where multiple devices are competing for the same space, leading to interference and congestion. Using Quality of Service or QoS settings to manage traffic can help with this, but this option isn’t available on all routers.
If you are only using WiFi because you are too far away from the router to run a LAN cable direct to your PS4, then consider using a powerline adapter as a next best solution to get on a wired connection even at distance from the router.
Powerline adapters are essentially wall plugs with ethernet ports built into them, allowing you to turn your wall socket in a wired internet connection.
You plug one adapter in and connect it to your router; you plug the other adapter in and connect it to your PS4, and the two plugs communicate through the electrical wiring of the house to deliver a wired internet connection even several rooms or floors away from the main router.
They are a clever home networking solution and can be ideal for gamers who want to get on a wired connection, but are too far away from their router and don’t want be messing around with DIY or running long cables through the house. They are simple plug and play devices and effectively do the same thing as ethernet but using the existing electrical circuitry instead.
See the video for a demonstration of how powerline adapters work. You need to have electrical wiring good enough to send the signal but in reality they work fine in most modern and semi modern houses.