I have to constantly turn wifi off/on on my MBP or my connection stops responding

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by buckingham2015, Mar 8, 2016.

  1. buckingham2015 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #1
    Hey guys, so I just moved into a new house in November 2015. I've had MBP 15" Mid 2014 model since October 2014. I'm running El Capitan 10.11.3. I've never had an issue with its connectivity anywhere else, but since I got to this new house I've had nonstop problems.

    Essentially, I'll be browsing the internet and at seemingly sporadic intervals, my connection seems to just freeze. Suddenly, no webpages will load, email won't load, Slack/other services say they've lost connection, etc. I've sat there waiting over a minute as it tries to load a webpage and nothing happens. The fastest way for me to fix it is to just turn my wifi off and back on again on the MBP. It reconnects instantly, and everything is working again. At least until it happens again 10 minutes later, or an hour later, or whatever random interval.

    My girlfriend's Dell has no problems. My iPad and iPhone also have no problems. So, something is happening with my MBP.

    I have Xfinity internet, we use the router they provided us model TC8305C. I tried going into the settings and changing the channel to the least congested one (the one we were using wasn't really too congested anyway), I tried messing with my MTU settings. I tried deleting all my wifi settings by following these instructions: http://osxdaily.com/2015/10/16/fix-wi-fi-problems-mac-os-x-el-capitan/ . I'm using Google DNS. I've tried resetting SMC and PRAM.

    Of all the above attempts, MTU seemed to actually make things work well for a few days, which was the longest stretch I've gone without problems. However, it may have just been some crazy coincidence, because everything has gone to **** again. This morning alone I've had to turn my wifi off/on about half a dozen times in 4 hours.

    Any ideas? Help!
     
  2. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
  3. ThatSomeone macrumors regular

    ThatSomeone

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2016
    Location:
    Here, where else?
    #3
    I've had the EXACT same issue with my new 15" rMBP aswell. Although they don't occur as often as yours, but they do occur time to time. Last time was this satuday evening and I first thought it was my connection, but when I couldn't even connect to the router's IP, I knew something was wrong. But turning off and on WiFi on the machine worked flawlessly...

    I had simular issues with my old Air(And no I didn't transfer anything over and started off fresh with the new MacBook). This might point to an software issue since that Air was from mid 2013 and this brand new rMBP from 2015.

    I hope it works out for you!
     
  4. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #4
    Sigh, I'd really like to avoid having to do this if at all possible.
     
  5. jerryk macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #5
    Do you live in an apartment or with near neighbors? If so it might be the Wifi channel your router uses is congested especially if your router is using 2.4 GHz. There are only 3 distinct frequencies. You can check by pressing the Wifi icon on the top bar and seeing if you see a lot of Wifi networks.

    If you think there might be an issue see if your router also has a 5 GHz transceiver and use that instead of the 2.4 Ghz.
     
  6. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Location:
    Aarhus, Denmark
    #6
    - It's really not that much of a hassle. Takes probably 15-30 minutes and all your content and settings are kept intact.
     
  7. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #7
    This morning I've had to cycle my wifi over a dozen times in less than 2 hours. This is maddening!
     
  8. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Location:
    Aarhus, Denmark
    #8
    - Tried the reinstall yet?
     
  9. rigormortis, Mar 29, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016

    rigormortis macrumors 68000

    rigormortis

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #9
    one question would be, do the network shares work? or is it just web pages that stop loading? when this happens, can you still print to your wifi printer? if network shares and printers work, but its just internet then it shows the WPA Key Refresh is working correctly, and its something else.



    your computer not being able to load web pages, and your mac shows you still being connected and the wifi dropping at what seems it could be regular intervals points to some kind of incompatibility of the router to pass along a new session key to your client

    this is called the WPA Key Refresh Interval

    see f you can find a setting in your wifi router that allows you to increase this interval to see if i helps

    try replacing your wifi router with an apple airport extreme or time capsule

    if you already have an airport extreme or time capsule, the only way to change the key refresh period is to use the older windows version

    another thing that could cause this would be the "multicast setting" on 802.11g routers. back when we used 802.11g if the router thought your client wasn't fast enough to connect to it, it would kick it off the network. setting multicast to high means that each client has to maintain a minimum connection speed to be able to connect to the router. i forget what the values were. i think low means 1 megabit

    802.11g was not MIMO , so if a client connected at 1 megabit then the entire network transmitted data at 1 megabit to meet the slowest client

    i think comcast sets their free wifi hotspots to HIGH because of all the times i have problems connecting to them

    you might have to reset your wifi to factory settings. if your using like aftermarket firmware (like WRT something???) , then you might want to go back to the regular firmware

    the only other trouble shooting step would be not to use your normal wifi password. use the preshared key instead.
    go to https://www.wireshark.org/tools/wpa-psk.html and enter network name, password, copy the PSK it generates and use that instead. on an airport extreme. the same hash shows up on ' show passwords '

    how wifi works is your password goes through a complicated mathematical formula and its merged with the name of your wifi network. this generates a 504 bit key. when this 504 bit key is given to the router, the router then informs the client what the current 256 bit key is. and every 10 30, or 60 minutes this 256 bit key changes. this prevents someone from recording your wifi network for a whole month or years in some kind of offline attack.

    with personal wifi all of the clients use the current 256 bit group key that changes at specific time intervals
    enterprise wifi allows its clients to connect to the their router at using their own private key which is not shared with all the other clients


    WPA uses rolling keys. its been forgotten by most people. so many people forget about rolling keys or forget about the fine details of wifi and often challenge me on forums when i try to explain it, they mistakenly think its your password that encrypts the wifi traffic, and this key never changes. well if you think that, you are wrong.

    if the wifi is dropping and the signal bars show 0 and you have to turn off the wifi card and turn it on again, then this is probably defective equipment or something else unknown
     
  10. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Yay Area, CA
    #10
    I have this issue at my bf's house but not at home or at work. I'm pretty sure it is his router but his mac's don't suffer from the same issue. I'm pretty stumped at what the possible issue might be.
     
  11. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #11
    I have this, constant cycling of WiFi at home but fine at work, both Meraki AP's but work is 5GHz and home is 2.4GHz, all other devices fine.

    I'm working through this:

    http://osxdaily.com/2014/10/25/fix-wi-fi-problems-os-x-yosemite/

    and removing the Network preferences files it lists (all same or similar in EC), so far have reconnected at work fine, will find out if home is different later...
     
  12. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #12
    Yeah, to emphasize it's the same for me. My laptop works great on all other connections, it's just having trouble with this network. And yeah, all the other devices in this house have no problem with this network, just my laptop.
     
  13. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #13
    At home and reconnected, so far seems more stable and faster with none of the issues...fingers crossed!
     
  14. MacOvation macrumors newbie

    MacOvation

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2008
    #14
    Idea: Make sure your DHCP Lease is long-enough, for example, a day or so.
    Otherwise, it'll re-lease and interrupt your signal.
    Patrick
     
  15. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #15
    Doesn't help or even influence, whether hour, day week or unlimited. Manual re-lease normally resolves the issue but it isn't tied to the router lease interval :-(
     
  16. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #16
    Is the fact that some days it can go over an hour without causing problems, while other days cause me to reset the connection every 5-10 minutes for hours on end, at all indicative of what the problem could be?
     
  17. rbrian macrumors 6502a

    rbrian

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Location:
    Aberdeen, Scotland
    #17
    My Mac mini has been doing this for years. It was ok with Snow Leopard, but with Lion (might have been Mountain Lion) it started losing the connection, sometimes once in a week, sometimes 10 times a day. The bug has survived multiple reinstalls.

    It wasn't the only thing, but it was the last straw which drove me to buy a Windows 10 desktop (which is about 10 times as fast as the fastest mini, and cheaper than the cheapest iMac). Just like ALL my other devices, it has rock solid wifi.
     
  18. duervo macrumors 68000

    duervo

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    #18
    1. Go out and get yourself an AirPort Extreme.

    2. Go home, download the latest version of Apple's AirPort Utility and install it, and then call Xfinity Support. Have them switch your TC8305C to bridged mode.

    3. Hookup the AirPort Extreme's WAN port to the TC8305C's first LAN port.

    4. Plug the AiPort Extreme's power cord in, wait for a minute or two, and then (with your Mac plugged into a LAN port on the AirPort Extreme,) use the AirPort Utility to configure the AirPort Extreme accordingly.

    5. Unplug the Mac from the AirPort Extreme, and configure its WiFi to use the the new network you just setup in Step 4.
     
  19. seifer48 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2015
    #19
    I had this exact issue with my Macbook 12", Wii U, Brother Printer, and one of my PC's. My main desktop, iMac 27", all smartphones, m18x, and 15" MBP all were unaffected. Issue ended up being that I had my router too close to my desktop and possibly the power lines in the wall. Normally a non issue, but I'm currently using it for mining. Since I have 5 gpus in it running at max utilization(~1000w total) and it was also in close proximity to the power lines in my wall(~1800w on that line, I've melted several surge protectors) it was giving off pretty extreme RF interference. The 2.4GHz band was completely unusable for any devices, and the 5GHz band only worked with the aforementioned ones. Moved the router 4 feet away from its old location, everything works perfect again.
     
  20. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #20
    Thanks for the lengthy reply. I tried everything here that I could, nothing fixed it.

    Another note: if I bootcamp into Windows 10, wifi works flawlessly. So it's something to do with the settings on my computer in OSX. I'm going to try reinstalling OS X today and I'll update you guys on the results.
     
  21. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #21
    It's been over half an hour and I haven't had to reset my wifi... Could... Could the reinstall have fixed it? I wish I had listened to you sooner Samuelsan!
     
  22. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #22
    What exact kind of reinstall did you do?
     
  23. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #23
    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204904

    I did reinstall from OS X recovery. Basically hold Command + R on reboot and follow the instructions. Took maybe 30 minutes total.
     
  24. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
  25. buckingham2015 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2015
    #25
    It's been 2 hours now and no sign of my wifi issues. I can't believe the last few months of hell are over. Thanks everyone, especially those who suggested reinstalling OS X!
     

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