Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, NIC compliance

Published by Nyau Wai Hoe - Updated on

Windows users, no matter if you’re on Windows 11, Windows 10, or using different Windows Server editions, might run into a tricky situation where your computer or server just decides to shut down and restart out of the blue. You don’t get any error message or the infamous blue screen of death (BSOD). But, there’s a little clue waiting for you in the Windows Event Viewer: an event log with ID 172 and Task Category 203, saying “Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, Reason: NIC compliance.”

This hint points towards your network interface card (NIC) losing connection while your system was chilling in standby mode. Though it looks like a network hiccup, this issue often digs deeper, signaling everything from hardware hiccups to driver disagreements. Let’s walk through what might cause this headache and how you can potentially fix it.

Connectivity state in standby Disconnected Reason NIC compliance

What does “Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, Reason: NIC compliance” mean?

The “Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, Reason: NIC compliance” event usually pops up in the Windows Event Viewer, a handy tool that keeps tabs on important system events. This particular one, linked with Event ID 172 and Task Category 203, is a red flag about a network interface controller (NIC) issue happening when your computer takes a nap in standby mode.

It’s often spotted during heavy-duty tasks like gaming or running demanding applications, leading to a surprise system shutdown and restart—sometimes without the typical blue screen warning of system crashes.

Windows 11 sudden system shutdown

This can be pretty alarming since it doesn’t give you much to go on for troubleshooting. But, the event log offers a clue to start digging into the real issue.

Also see: The system has rebooted without cleanly shutting down first

Possible causes of the issue

Finding out why you’re seeing the “Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, Reason: NIC compliance” event is like playing detective. You need to carefully check out different parts of your system. From what people have shared and some tech digging, here are some usual suspects:

  1. A shaky power supply unit (PSU) could be the culprit, especially if it can’t handle the heavy lifting required by games or other demanding tasks.Computer Power Supply Issue
  2. Getting too hot to handle? Overheating, especially of the CPU or GPU, might force your system to shut down to save itself. Oddly enough, standard stress tests might not always catch this.Overheat CPU and Motherboard
  3. Old or glitchy drivers, particularly for your network or sound, might be throwing a wrench in the works. Updating your Wi-Fi adapter drivers or turning off conflicting audio devices could help.
  4. Since this event is about network troubles, a wonky network interface card (NIC), whether it’s built-in or an added PCIe Wi-Fi card, might be to blame.Network adapter card PCIE
  5. Now and then, software bugs in the operating system itself can mess up how standby connectivity states are handled, leading to this logged event.

Each of these issues can trigger the same event log entry, but fixing them calls for a different game plan.

Linked issue: Computer Restarts Randomly in Windows 11 (Fix)

Diagnostic steps and suggested solutions

If your computer is acting up, shutting down unexpectedly, and you spot the “Connectivity state in standby: Disconnected, Reason: NIC compliance” in the event log, here’s a checklist to help you sort it out:

  1. Start with the event logs. Check the Windows Event Viewer for other critical events happening around the same time. This might point you towards a specific problem.Critical Event in Windows 11
  2. Keep an eye on those temps. Use software to watch the temperatures of your CPU, GPU, and other parts both during regular use and when they’re working hard. Overheating could be a clue.Monitor Temperature to prevent system suddent shutdown
  3. Test your hardware. Use tools like Memtest86+ for checking your memory and other software for stress-testing your CPU and GPU. This helps rule out hardware issues and overheating.Blend Test CPU Throttling
  4. Give your power supply a look. If you think it’s failing, test it or swap it out. Make sure any replacement can handle your system’s needs.Connectivity state in standby Disconnected Reason NIC compliance Windows 11
  5. Cooling is key. Clean out any dust, check that fans are spinning, and consider new thermal paste for the CPU. Good airflow keeps everything running cool.CPU Fan Overheating
  6. Update your drivers and BIOS. Keeping everything current, especially for your GPU and motherboard, can prevent many issues. For GPU drivers, a fresh install might be best.Update Ethernet Network Driver Windows 11
  7. Tweak your power settings to keep hardware awake and opt for a High-Performance plan.High performance plan settings Windows 11
  8. Look at your audio devices. Turn off any you’re not using to avoid potential conflicts.Disable audio devices in Windows 11
  9. Re-seat your components. Sometimes just taking out and putting back RAM, GPUs, and even the CPU can fix connection or dust issues.Reseat RAM modules
  10. If you’re still stuck, try swapping out parts like RAM, GPUs, or network cards with ones you know work well.

Before you get into hardware changes or updates, back up your important files to avoid losing anything if things go sideways. If you’re still having trouble after trying these steps, it might be time to call in the pros or reach out to your hardware’s maker if it’s still under warranty.

Nyau Wai Hoe
Nyau Wai Hoe is the Founder and Chief Editor of With a degree in software engineering and over 12 years of experience in the tech support industry, Nyau has established himself as an expert in the field, with a primary focus on the Microsoft Windows operating system. As a tech enthusiast, he loves exploring new technologies and leveraging them to solve real-life problems.

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