All my Airport Express and legacy Macs are having cheeseburgers...

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by HowEver, Feb 12, 2008.

  1. HowEver macrumors 6502a

    HowEver

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    #1
    So, I was adjusting my Airport Express' settings yesterday, and everything went to hell in a wireless handcart for all of my legacy Macs.

    Suddenly, no wireless at all. All machines are using 10.4.11, most but not all with the recent QuickTime update.

    Additionally, on each computer, the icons on the top right menu bar, except for the Spotlight icon, on all the computers, disappeared. Spotlight ceased functioning.

    Computers include: Pismo 400 Mhz 1GB RAM; several faster iMac G3s, 1GB RAM each. All were functioning fine before, the iMacs will start up but won't display the top right menu icons for about 30 minutes after startup, and wireless is dead on them.

    I tried resetting the Airport Express, several times, full factory default reset with 4 flashing green lights and all, and it isn't picked up by any of the computers in the house. At all.

    Worst is the Pismo: it freezes on most startups at the grey screen, or the blue screen, or the blue loading bar. In addition to the missing menu icons, it doesn't show as having an Airport Card. None of the following has fixed the problem: repair permissions, repair disk; full DiskWarrior directory rebuild; switching out the Airport Card; archive and install and update 10.4 to 10.4.11; button reset; open firmware reset, with reset-nvram and reset-all; PRAM resets x 3 each time in combination with the firmware resets; starting up from an external FireWire 10.4.11 drive.

    On the Pismo I also tried a few solutions found on the web, including trashing the menubar preferences and menubar systemuser preferences.

    Right now, it's working, except for wireless (good old ethernet comes in handy) so I think I'll just leave it on until Apple releases a MacBook or Pro update like I've been waiting for. Or until I figure this out, and it would be a drag if I don't.

    I also have a lime iBook. It couldn't find wireless after this either. It wasn't even on when this happened, it was completely off.

    If my Airport Express died, could it have taken all these computers' proper functioning with it?

    I deleted network locations, and trashed network preferences including the plist files. No change.

    It occurs to me that I may need another Airport base station to test with.

    Help, anyone?



    Related attempts:

    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=5141532

    http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20060203133729554

    http://discussions.apple.com/message.jspa?messageID=748910
     
  2. jeremy.king macrumors 603

    jeremy.king

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    #2
    Sounds to me like you have a dead/dying/smurfed router on hand - and the recent security/quicktime/etc updates jacked your machines around. Most likely just coincidence. Try another router to see if wireless is truly dead in ALL of your machines.
     
  3. HowEver thread starter macrumors 6502a

    HowEver

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    #3
    Crap. I tried a Linksys router, and nothing. None of the Macs pick up the signal.

    It's weird that after 10 minutes, the rightside menubar items show up, and I can adjust network preferences at that point. Wireless remains useless, though. On all the computers.
     
  4. HowEver thread starter macrumors 6502a

    HowEver

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    #4
    A clean install on the Pismo reproduces the exact same problem: topright menubar items missing for at least 10 minutes after startup; and no wireless networks available, not even the neigbours' open networks, or a default reset of my Airport Express.

    This should *not* even be possible, how could 4 different Macs have the same wireless problem and missing menubar item problem? And I still haven't fixed it.
     
  5. HowEver thread starter macrumors 6502a

    HowEver

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    #5
    So... I tried the Pismo PowerBook G3 at my university, and it loads instantly and finds all the local networks, and joins them with no problem whatsoever. It also boots no problem and reboots without a problem. Fast and dependable.

    This means there is interference at home.

    I unplugged: the microwave, cordless phones, remotes, anything with any kind of wireless. There isn't anything new, just old stuff that could malfunction.

    No change. Same booting problem, same loading problem, same missing menubar icons (for the first five minutes) from the Airport icon and to the right, but the spotlight icon shows (even if useless until the rest load). And when they do load, I can't find any neighbourhood wireless networks (usually find several, secure and not secure).

    So get out your tin foil hats and help me out if you can.

    Have my neighbours installed 10 MRI machines? Have the police blanketed the neighbourhood with wireless jamming devices? Is Apple forcing me to try wireless "N" devices?
     
  6. jeremy.king macrumors 603

    jeremy.king

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    #6
    Im guessing the menu bar issue is related to wireless not connecting (misbehaving), because the wireless icon does show up in the upper right corner. Just a thought, once you get a menubar to fully load, drag the wireless icon out of the menubar by holding down command while you drag it. Reboot and see if delay still happens with menubar.
     
  7. HowEver thread starter macrumors 6502a

    HowEver

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    #7
    And as mysteriously as it disappeared... my wireless is back. Completely. Startups are a breeze. Everything is fine.

    And the neighbourhood has lit up with new (and old) wireless networks of all kinds. Perhaps it was a neighbourhood thing, and people have been replacing their wireless routers and networks trying to fix similar problems.

    In any case, knock wood, wireless has returned to the HowEver household.
     
  8. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #8
    Ok so you tried two routers and several macs and no wireless signals. I think we can rule out a problem with a router or with a mac. The chances of two routers and several mac all failing at the same time is near zero. It is something else.

    Do you have a cordless phone or some other microwave transmitter in the house. What about the people who live next door? Something is filing the airwaves with "trash" right over the wi-fi wireless band.
     

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