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Old Apr 4, 2012, 01:12 PM   #1
Hellishness
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MBA Keeps dropping Wifi

So my MBA keeps dropping wifi for some reason. It happens ONLY on my home network, and ONLY to my computer. I'm the only mac on the network. Every other wifi network is perfectly fine, every other computer on this network is fine. Many things can happen. It could say it's connected, but not be able to access the internet (whether it tells me that there's no internet access or not). It may just drop wifi altogether, and refuse to connect (see pic).

Generally, if I unplug the router and plug it back in, it's all good. It also works if I restart my computer. This happens multiple times a day. Yesterday I did everything I know to get it to connect (restart router many times, restart my MBA), and nothing worked. Eventually it just magically worked.

How can I stop this from happening? We got a notice from comcast a while ago saying that a bot called DNS Changer was detected on one or more machines on the network. I'm assuming that this can't be me, right?


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Old Apr 4, 2012, 07:21 PM   #2
Bonut
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What linksys router do you have. When I first got my iMac I had a issue where my wifi would disconnect and reconnect about a minute later. This would happen every 10 minutes or so. I came across a thread that said I should update my router firmware and see if that helps. Fixed my issue right after I did that. My router was a linksys WRT54G.
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Old Apr 4, 2012, 09:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellishness View Post

How can I stop this from happening? We got a notice from comcast a while ago saying that a bot called DNS Changer was detected on one or more machines on the network. I'm assuming that this can't be me, right?
I'd assume that it could be you. Comcast's detection stuff is actually pretty good.
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Old Apr 4, 2012, 10:09 PM   #4
Hellishness
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonut View Post
What linksys router do you have. When I first got my iMac I had a issue where my wifi would disconnect and reconnect about a minute later. This would happen every 10 minutes or so. I came across a thread that said I should update my router firmware and see if that helps. Fixed my issue right after I did that. My router was a linksys WRT54G.
That's the one i have! How do you update the firmware??
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ccrew View Post
I'd assume that it could be you. Comcast's detection stuff is actually pretty good.
Is that a virus that could run on a mac?
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Old Apr 4, 2012, 10:37 PM   #5
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Mine did the same thing once dont remember how i fixed it
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Old Apr 5, 2012, 11:47 AM   #6
GGJstudios
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellishness View Post
Is that a virus that could run on a mac?
There are no Mac OS X viruses in the wild. Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released over 10 years ago. If you practice safe computing, the only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which cannot infect your Mac unless you actively install them, and they can be easily avoided with some basic education, common sense and care in what software you install. Also, Mac OS X Snow Leopard and Lion have anti-malware protection built in, further reducing the need for 3rd party antivirus apps.
Mac Virus/Malware FAQ
Check your DNS settings by reading: Why am I being redirected to other sites?
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Old Apr 5, 2012, 03:01 PM   #7
Bonut
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Originally Posted by Hellishness View Post
That's the one i have! How do you update the firmware??

Is that a virus that could run on a mac?
Go to the linksys website, search for your model and download the most recent firmware version.

Then go to http://192.168.1.1 and log in using your router password. Click the administration tab, then firmware update. It'll then ask you to browse your computer for the file you downloaded from linksys website. It should do the rest from there.
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Old Apr 5, 2012, 08:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonut View Post
Go to the linksys website, search for your model and download the most recent firmware version.

Then go to http://192.168.1.1 and log in using your router password. Click the administration tab, then firmware update. It'll then ask you to browse your computer for the file you downloaded from linksys website. It should do the rest from there.
Thanks so much! I'll do that when I get home and update with results.
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Old Apr 6, 2012, 07:29 AM   #9
Rorry
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General troubleshooting tips...

Make sure you have the latest Linksys firmware on your WRT54G (beware that there are many different hardware revisions of the WRT54G, and many devices with similar model numbers, so be sure to get your model number and hardware revision exactly right when you go to the Linksys website looking for the latest firmware version). Update your Question with your hardware revision and firmware version and exact model number of your Linksys device.

Also make sure you've applied all software updates to your MacBook Air. Update your Question with your exact MacBook Air revision (from System Profiler; like "MacBookAir 3,1") and your exact OS version.

In case the channel your WRT54G is picking isn't the cleanest, try manually setting the channel. Try channels 1, 6, and 11, and see which one works best.

Try to be specific with your description of symptoms and troubleshoot different symptoms as different problems. If Wi-Fi stays connected but the Internet doesn't work, that's probably a whole separate problem that you need to investigate/troubleshoot/diagnose/fix separately from case where you fully lose your Wi-Fi association.

What signal strength (RSSI) do you usually see from your AP in the spots in your home where you're using your MacBook Air? Hold down Option while clicking on the Wi-Fi Menu Extra in Mac OS X to see the RSSI and various other stats for your current network connection.

What do your system log and kernel logs say regarding Wi-Fi or other network problems? You can crank up the Wi-Fi logging in Mac OS X using the /usr/libexec/airportd command, but the syntax varies between OS version, and since you didn't provide your OS version, I can't tell you exactly what to type. There's even a Wi-Fi Diagnostics app in Lion in /System/Library/CoreServices/, but I don't know if you're running Lion or not.

Also note that the Linksys WRT54G was introduced in late 2002, so even if you bought your unit more recently than that, it's still basically a decade-old design. Maybe it's time to consider buying a modern AP. Your MacBook Air is capable of 300mbps operation, so it's a pity to keep it shackled to a decade-old AP that can only do one-sixth the speed.
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Old Apr 6, 2012, 08:50 AM   #10
kapolani
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Are you running Lion? Apparently it's a known issue.

This happens to me as well. Sometimes a few times a day and sometimes it won't happen for days.

All I have to do to clear it up is turn wifi off then on.

I haven't been able to pinpoint what causes it. I haven't updated my router's firmware so don't know if it really fixes the problem. One of these days I will. LOL.
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Old Apr 6, 2012, 11:26 PM   #11
Hellishness
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonut View Post
Go to the linksys website, search for your model and download the most recent firmware version.

Then go to http://192.168.1.1 and log in using your router password. Click the administration tab, then firmware update. It'll then ask you to browse your computer for the file you downloaded from linksys website. It should do the rest from there.
I may be an idiot...but that url isn't working. I downloaded the firmware and everything, but the link says "failed to open page"
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Old Apr 7, 2012, 12:23 PM   #12
Bonut
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I may be an idiot...but that url isn't working. I downloaded the firmware and everything, but the link says "failed to open page"
The only thing I can think of is try connecting to your router with a ethernet wire and try going to that address. Then doing the firmware update. I know sometimes routers have a feature to stop from accessing it through wireless. I don't know if your router has that feature or not, but its worth a try.

Also as Rorry said the router your using, is a decade old. I had the same router with the same issue. The firmware update fixed my issue but I decided I would upgrade my router anyways.
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Old Apr 7, 2012, 05:09 PM   #13
Flask
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UpDate Router

The same thing was happening to me (macbook air) & the wife (macbook pro).
I updated the firmware on the router & no more trouble.
Not difficult to do.
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Old Apr 7, 2012, 06:00 PM   #14
LaWally
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I may be an idiot...but that url isn't working. I downloaded the firmware and everything, but the link says "failed to open page"
Try recycling your router. That's how I cleared this error a long long time ago.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 07:42 PM   #15
Hellishness
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Okay...I've been ignoring this since it's been okay for a few days, but now I can't log into the IP address when I try. I don't know what the username and password are supposed to be. I tried my wifi password and the network name, along with other combinations with the name and model number, but no dice. Any help?
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 08:24 PM   #16
LaWally
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Okay...I've been ignoring this since it's been okay for a few days, but now I can't log into the IP address when I try. I don't know what the username and password are supposed to be. I tried my wifi password and the network name, along with other combinations with the name and model number, but no dice. Any help?
Found this FAQ answer on the net for the WRT54G:

What is the default IP address, Username and Password used to login to the router’s web-based setup page?
The default IP address is 192.168.1.1. The default Username is left blank and Password is “admin”.

Here is the link if you have more questions. See #2 under Hardware
http://www6.nohold.net/Cisco2/ukp.as...1be9_19723.xml

Last edited by LaWally; Apr 16, 2012 at 08:30 PM.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 08:29 PM   #17
chown33
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Go to the hardware store.

Purchase a medium-sized sledge hammer.

Place the router on a hard surface (e.g. uncarpeted floor).

Hold the hammer at least 1 meter (3 feet) above the router.

Release the hammer.

Purchase a new router, returning the sledge hammer (you could say "It was too big").


Speaking from experience, when a router gets this flaky, there can be any number of reasons, many of which will not be easily diagnosed and/or repaired.

For example, one router I was using had a little too much slop in its power connector. As a result it would turn off and then come back on multiple times a day. At unpredictable times. The hammer fixed it. Well, by "fixed" I mean destroyed it, at which time I no longer needed to wedge toothpicks into the power jack in futile attempts to make the power plug stay connection. The replacement router's power plug (and all other plugs) have worked fine.

A different earlier router simply decided to stop remembering the admin password, always reverting to its insecure default. Other than this, the router worked fine, but an insecure admin password is untenable, and I wouldn't inflict it on an unsuspecting recycler, so it met the hammer.
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