How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems

Apple has been the top-notch company when it comes to keeping its devices secured. It holds its security standards by providing the latest security and other relevant updates at all latest time possible. But, this time the new kernel update has created a lot of turmoil for the Ethernet net users due to some minor bug in the incomplete kernel configuration data.

This new kernel update has rendered the Ethernet port "Broadcom BCM5701 driver" in Macs useless. Although many of the newer models do not have the Ethernet port, many users of Mac still have the Ethernet port and use it to access the internet.

Fortunately, Apple has solved the problem very soon. It is now time to learn the method on how to fix Mac Ethernet problems as soon as possible and start using the Ethernet connection as usual. The main premise of the solution is to install the new update Incompatible Kernel Extension Configuration Data 3.28.2 and update your system. In that way, the error will be removed, and you will be able to use your Ethernet connection as usual.

Now, to download the new update you will need the internet connection on your Mac. For users who have the Wi-Fi connection, it will be easy for them to download the update and fix the problem but for those who do not have any other means will have to follow through a number of additional steps to fix the problem. So, let us take a look at how to fix the Mac Ethernet Problems in the subsequent sections.

How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems

As we discussed, the error is due to a bad update by the Apple. But is it the case with your Mac too? So, in order to check that, we need to know what is the current update that is installed on your computer. After we know that, we can then proceed with steps on how to fix Mac Ethernet problems. To know what is your Mac version, you should:

  1. While holding down the "option" key, click on the "System Information" from the Apple menu in the menu bar.
  2. Open the "software" section and then click on the "installation" section.
  3. Then sort the information by clicking on the "software name" column.
  4. Proceed with searching the update "Incompatible Kernel Extension Configuration Data" in the list.

Here is the sample screenshot of how the screen will look like at the end of the steps 4.

How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems-1

If the latest update version is 3.28.2, then you are on right path and need not worry about the port problem. On the other hand, if you are stuck to 3.28.1 then you have got a bad update. You will need to fix the problem by updating to latest version 3.28.2. So, let us see two methods on how to fix the problem:

1. If you can connect to the internet:

In case, you have Wi-Fi, and you can connect to the internet, then you are on the sunny side. All you have to do is follow this steps and update to the latest version to fix Mac Ethernet problems:

  1. a. Open the terminal app from the utility folder in the application folder, or you can open it from Spotlight.
  2. b. Now, copy the following code in the terminal app and press on the return key to run the command.
  3. sudo software update –background

    How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems-2

  4. c. Enter the system password and proceed by clicking on the return key.
  5. d. Close the terminal app and restart your Mac by clicking on the Apple menu in the menu bar.

2. If you cannot connect to the internet:

In case, you cannot connect to the internet because Ethernet was the only mean, then you will need to revert back your update to a version when your port was working and then update the system so that you can get back your system to the version which is free from the bug:

  1. a. You will need to launch the Mac in "recovery mode." For that, restart the Mac and go into recovery mode. Going into the recovery mode disables a lot of apps, and only the necessary one function in the background.
  2. b. When you enter into the "recovery mode," select the "Utility Disk" in the OS X Utility list.
  3. c. Select the primary boot drive on the left side sidebar. By default, Macintosh HD is the boot drive. If, you have changed the main boot drive then select that drive.
  4. How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems-3

  5. d. If you have FileVault, then in that case the main boot drive would be greyed out or not selectable. In that case, go to File -> Unlock and then centre the FileVault password to open the main boot disk. You can skip this step if that is not the case.
  6. e. Mount the main boot disk by going to File -> Mount in the menu bar.
  7. f. While being in the recovery mode, launch the terminal app.
  8. g. Enter the code given below and tap the return key. Enter the password if necessary.
  9. rm -rf "/Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/Extensions/AppleKextExcludeList.kext"

    Note: Replace Macintosh HD in the command line with the name of main boot drive if you have some other boot drive.

    How to Fix Mac Ethernet Problems-4

  10. h. Close the terminal app and restart the Mac
  11. i. when you reopen the Mac, your Ethernet port should be working fine.
  12. Now, update your system to the latest update by opening the terminal app and running the following command line.

  13. j. Enter the password if asked to enter.
  14. sudo software update –background

  15. k. Restart the Mac, and everything now should be working fine.


It can be challenging to deal with Mac Ethernet problems, but it is not impossible. The article can help you how to fix Mac Ethernet problems very well. But if the problem persists, it is advisable to follow the Apple forum or can take help of a Mac Expert to resolve your issue.

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