iMac constantly disconnecting from wifi

Discussion in 'iMac' started by photogpab, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. photogpab macrumors 6502


    Jun 21, 2010
    hoping someone can help me. i have an airport extreme station at home that all my devices connect to (iphones, appletv and my iMac). every device works perfectly EXCEPT my iMac! It continuously disconnects from the wifi connection. and i dont mean every few days or even every few hours. i mean this will happen maybe every 30 min (or less).

    wifi connection will be running perfectly, and suddenly nothing will work. and i'll have to turn wifi "off" and then "on" again from the top right hand corner of the iMac... everything will work again. and then maybe 20 min later will disconnect! (to clarify "disconnect" - it will still show as connected on the top right hand corner of the screen, but nothing will work - internet, itunes music in the cloud, downloads will stop, etc).

    this never happens with my other devices. just my iMac

    i dont know if im crazy but i feel it happens more when i have iTunes open (which is basically most of the time). i have an iTunes Match subscription, not sure if that could be affecting it?

    idk. need some serious help here. its driving me crazy!

    i'm running OS X 10.8.2 and my iMac is 2011 model (before these new thin ones were released)
  2. Raima macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2010
    To help you diagnose the problem, there are 3 possibilities. It's a possibly a wifi range issue, software issue or hardware issue.

    To determine if it's a range issue, move the iMac closer to the wireless router to see if the problem persists. If it persists, it's either a hardware or software issue.

    My next suggestion is to do a full backup, and reinstalled OS X Mountain lion again. Do not restore to a previous state, as it may restore configuration data which may have caused the issue. If after the installation the wifi issue is resolved, there was a software issue that was affecting the wifi.

    If the wifi issue still persists, it suggests it's a hardware issue where it may be overheating after certain usage and shutting down. I'm not certain for sure that's what it's doing but the result you're getting is none the less the same.

    If it's a hardware issue, you need to get it resolved with Apple.

    Consider getting apple care if it's more convenient for them to come to your house to resolve the issue. Your iMac still must be within the first year of warrantly before you can apply Apple care.

    Good luck with resolving the issue.
  3. photogpab, Feb 28, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013

    photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 21, 2010
    i dont think its a range issue because my iphone, ipad, etc all work from the same room with no issue.

    i guess i could do a full re-install of mountain lion but - and i know this sounds dumb - i dont know how! since mountain lion did not come from a disc, but an itunes download, im not sure how to perform a full re-install.

    any help there?

    i guess once i try that i will know if its a possible hardware issue. it could be. the imac is constantly getting very very very hot. im always encoding alot of video and running several programs at once and at times the imac gets extremely hot. i just never knew that could affect performance of something like wifi connection?
  4. Raima macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2010
    The iphone, ipad, etc use different hardware, so reception quality can vary, hence I recommended to move the iMac itself.

    You'll need to download the Mountain Lion from the app store and use another program to use the Mountain Lion image to create a USB bootable stick. I don't remember what program I used, but do a google.

    Once the USB stick has been created, in system config, open up startup disk and select the USB stick to boot off. From there, just follow the prompts to install a new copy of Mountain Lion.

    I vaguely remember I had a simular issue. I think it ended up being a conflict in ip address with another device. You might also want to check that too before you do a full reinstall.

    I hope this helps.
  5. JoeSay macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2013
    Coromandel Valley, Adelaide
    I also had the same problem. Turns out, for me at least, it was an iTunes issue. It only happened when iTunes was on. So I made sure I updated to the latest version of iTunes and I also turned off the WiFi sync on my iPad and iPhone. That resolved the issue and it doesn't happen anymore.

    Not sure if it was the iTunes update or the WiFi sync that fixed it however. :confused:

    Good luck.
  6. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 21, 2010
    i swear i feel like mine is an itunes issue as well. i notice that whenever i actually open itunes and it starts connecting to itunes match i have seen the wifi connection drop immediately. i may be crazy but i feel like if i close itunes the wifi doesnt drop as often. but i could be imagining it.

    i turned off wifi-sync on my devices. lets see if that does anything. i already have the latest version of itunes.
  7. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    What bandwidth is your iMac and other devices running on? You might want to consider running the iPad/iPhone etc on 2.4 and the iMac on 5. Also, you can always reset your Airport Extreme via a hard reset. First make sure to have your iMac wifi OFF. Once the AE is back on again, then from your Mac do a search for local AE and set it up again. One thing to watch for is that sometimes, depending on what your AE is connected to for Internet, you can get double NAT going on which will cause slowness and at times drop offs as you have experienced. Usually the AE will tell you if double NAT is going on.

    I have two AE (one older and the latest) and both are now retired in favor of non Apple router that works better in my case. I hope you solve your problem as I know it can be extremely frustrating. Btw, you may want to check the channels that are defaulting on your AE and play with those as well. There are some article on that topic via other forums.
  8. bembol macrumors 65816


    Jul 29, 2006
    We had this problem last year we upgraded bigger cap, which mean new modem. It took 4-6 calls, two modem exchanges and countless unplugging the router before a Rogers Technician told me that the current modem we were using (SMC) doesn't work well with Apple.

    I set foot inside Rogers plus store many times and never even saw the Cisco Modem, until it was brought up.

    Since a technician was going to deliver the new modem, I ask if they can move it upstairs in the main floor. Seriously, I don't get why modems are installed/set up in the basement. Anyways they wanted $50 but after talking to the supervisor, they covered half the cost.

    We haven't had any problems since.
  9. Elric macrumors newbie

    Jun 4, 2009
    I have been having this issue at work.
    The internet is fine when other employees are working, but when I'm here, my iMac disconnects (from internet, NOT Wifi) every 10 minutes. Today, I turned wifi off on my iPhone 5 with iOS 7 Beta 3. No disconnects whatsoever. This has been happening since iOS 6.0 though.
  10. firedept macrumors 603


    Jul 8, 2011
    Similar issue. Every time my mac went to sleep I would have to reconnect to my preferred Network. I went into System Preferences>Network>Advanced>WIFI. I then removed all Preferred Networks and clicked OK. I then opened Advanced>WIFI again, clicked the + and added the Network I wanted to connect to. Problem solved.

    This may work for you if some of the other suggestions offered do not work. Might save you re-installing ML.
  11. Elric macrumors newbie

    Jun 4, 2009
    That's nothing at all like the problem I was having. But thanks.
  12. Elric macrumors newbie

    Jun 4, 2009
    So I was right. When I'm at work and I turn my iPhones wifi on, in 5-10 minutes, my iMac loses it's Internet connection (stays connected to network though).
    Anyone know why this might be happening and how I could possibly fix it?

Share This Page