iMac Wi-Fi needs to be manually turned on and off.

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
Hey guys, hoping someone here has the answer to this absolutely irritating problem..

Randomly, I mean sometimes it doesn't happen for days at a time, my iMac's wifi will stop working. Its still connected but I cannot connect to websites or do anything concerning the internet until I manually turn Wi-Fi on and off. This is really annoying.

I cannot pin it on a single thing, it happens in different situations with different apps running. I googled the problem and tried many of the fixes like resetting SMC, creating a network location.

I really don't think its a hardware issue, it seems a lot like a software issue to me and there are other people with the same problem and they've all solved it using different things.

Ive tried everything. Im not sure what else to do. :(

Oh and I'm running a 2011 iMac 27 inch i7 running the latest version of mavericks.
 
Last edited:

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
If possible use wired Ethernet on stationary devices. Also could be your WiFi router.
VERY likely, I would say.

I had a Linksys router at one time and this would happen periodically. Replaced it with a Netgear and all problems disappeared.

(I am not suggesting Netgear is universally better than Linksys, merely that the particular Linksys model I had didn't work very well in my setup.)
 

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
I had the router replaced a few weeks ago! Weird huh.

And as for ethernet, I'm up in the attic and the router is in the room below me so I guess it wouldn't be that hard for me to run a hardwire, but I'm not very good with stuff like that!

Also, it appears to ONLY happen to my iMac. When my iMac loses connection everything else has full signal and works properly.

But somethings telling me its not a hardware issue. I feel like if it were a hardware issue, it would search for connection or just turn wifi off completely. Its literally still connected to my network locally and just not letting me do anything.

Someone online suggested I change the channel on my router, I currently have it set to automatic.
 

Beards

macrumors 6502a
Mar 22, 2014
914
362
Derbyshire UK
I had exactly the same issue the day I bought my iMac.
Every other machine including laptops, tablets and smartphones had no problem whatsoever. It was only the iMac that had difficulty in finding a connection.
Initially I did the same, disconnect then reconnect but like you mentioned the cure was to use an alternative channel.
Since doing this the iMac's not had any problems locking in and staying connected.
 

thedeske

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2013
963
58
I'd pin it on the router too, but if you're iMac isn't moved around, I'd cable it as suggested...I don't use wifi on it at all, only on external devices.
Yeah, it might not be stylish, but there's nothing like a good ol' hardwire ;)
 

Choctaw

macrumors 6502
Apr 8, 2008
324
12
If possible use wired Ethernet on stationary devices. Also could be your WiFi router.
Yes I like the hard wired Ethernet connection. Even with a password protection your wifi connection can be compromised by others with the right knowledge, at least that is what I have heard many times. So I just don't take the chance. In the area I live in it is very easy to find wifi that don't even have password installed. I think wifi would be less venerable if the software for setting up a router required putting in a password. Just my take.
 

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
I had exactly the same issue the day I bought my iMac.
Every other machine including laptops, tablets and smartphones had no problem whatsoever. It was only the iMac that had difficulty in finding a connection.
Initially I did the same, disconnect then reconnect but like you mentioned the cure was to use an alternative channel.
Since doing this the iMac's not had any problems locking in and staying connected.
Yes I have selected an alternate channel and am waiting for the problem to come back, if the problem continues I will hardwire the computer.
 

eduardrw

macrumors 6502
May 20, 2013
252
3
Try to delete your WIFI connection in Settings and then create it new in Settings.
Helped me one one occasion.

Settings - Network - WIFI - Advanced -- delete connection
hit OK and then apply.

The set up connection.
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,374
25
Toronto, Canada
I had the router replaced a few weeks ago! Weird huh.

And as for ethernet, I'm up in the attic and the router is in the room below me so I guess it wouldn't be that hard for me to run a hardwire, but I'm not very good with stuff like that!

Also, it appears to ONLY happen to my iMac. When my iMac loses connection everything else has full signal and works properly.

But somethings telling me its not a hardware issue. I feel like if it were a hardware issue, it would search for connection or just turn wifi off completely. Its literally still connected to my network locally and just not letting me do anything.

Someone online suggested I change the channel on my router, I currently have it set to automatic.
Still didn't mention which router make & model. Hopefully not a ISP supplied router, they're usually gubbage. A Ethernet over Power adapter would probably solve your problem if you can't run Cat5e.
 

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
I'd bet big money on it being your router, antman. Just because other devices on your network have no issues, doesn't mean it's not the router.

These things should all be compatible, but very often they just aren't as compatible as we would like them to be and they will work for a while and then hang like you describe. I remember Linksys trying very hard to come up with settings and tweaks to stop this happening with their router and Apple TV's, which would go a few days and then stop communicating just as you describe. I changed the router, problems instantly went away.
 

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
Still didn't mention which router make & model. Hopefully not a ISP supplied router, they're usually gubbage. A Ethernet over Power adapter would probably solve your problem if you can't run Cat5e.
Well the problem is still happening, I spoke to apple and he says that if its not completely disconnecting my Wi-Fi its either a software issue or my router.

We went through creating a new network location... again and it still didn't help.

And yes, unfortunately I have verizon FiOS and they give you a supplied modem/router and without it our cable loses the guide. (If it were up to me we wouldn't have cable TV but my parents and sister couldn't live without it)

Im going to order ANOTHER replacement router from them and see what I can do from there.

Ill either have to look into ethernet over power line, or attempting to cut the FiOS router out of my network.

----------

I'd bet big money on it being your router, antman. Just because other devices on your network have no issues, doesn't mean it's not the router.

These things should all be compatible, but very often they just aren't as compatible as we would like them to be and they will work for a while and then hang like you describe. I remember Linksys trying very hard to come up with settings and tweaks to stop this happening with their router and Apple TV's, which would go a few days and then stop communicating just as you describe. I changed the router, problems instantly went away.
Yes, I think I'm realizing that I may have to pin this on the router.

Its just going to be tough for me to change it because its a supplied router/modem from FiOS.

----------

Also, the router/modem they supply is a Verizon Actiontec M1424WR GIGE.
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,374
25
Toronto, Canada
See if your router can be put into gateway mode and buy a decent WiFi router. The odds are your router has flawed firmware and changing it with the same make / model won't fix anything.
 

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
See if your router can be put into gateway mode and buy a decent WiFi router. The odds are your router has flawed firmware and changing it with the same make / model won't fix anything.
This is indeed my plan.

I just took a trip down to my FiOS store and picked up a replacement router. Its the same make/model but a newer revision. If the problem persists than I KNOW FOR SURE its the router and ill be putting it in gateway mode and getting myself a GOOD router.

I don't know why they try to shove these modem/routers down your throat. I asked in the store if I could have JUST a modem and he laughed and asked me why I would want that..
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,374
25
Toronto, Canada
This is indeed my plan.

I just took a trip down to my FiOS store and picked up a replacement router. Its the same make/model but a newer revision. If the problem persists than I KNOW FOR SURE its the router and ill be putting it in gateway mode and getting myself a GOOD router.

I don't know why they try to shove these modem/routers down your throat. I asked in the store if I could have JUST a modem and he laughed and asked me why I would want that..
Yea, Rogers here in Canada loves shoving the modem+router all in one down consumers throats too. Fortunately they all can be put into gateway mode easily enough.

Awhile back there was a UPNP bug that affected a large amount of routers from many different manufacturers. Same with the SSL bug. Seems most manufactures use the same source code but few release firmware updates.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,313
1,696
I used that exact same router/modem on my iMac without issue for quite a while. Had very good luck with it.

Got rid of Fios though so I bought an AirPort Extreme.
 

antman2x2

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 1, 2011
523
194
New YAWK
Just an update, I've got it all hardwired now, had a buddy come over for a few beers while we hooked everything up. Snaking wires through walls is quite an interesting experience...

I spoke to apple again and they were baffled providing me with no answer after I had done all of their trouble shooting steps. Finally, the tech told me there may be some small rare bug somewhere in my routers software and he suggested I purchase a router to use other than my wonderful FiOS one.

Although its now hardwired, from time to time I'm going to switch on Wi-Fi and see if I can solve this. I may even borrow my buddies old router and see if it happens.

Ill keep this thread updated with my findings and maybe I can help someone out one day.
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,374
25
Toronto, Canada
ISP routers rely on the OEM to fork a custom firmware update and generally never bother unless it's of benefit to the ISP or a security patch.

It's possible your iMac's modem is at fault, but less likely than your ISP's router.

PS wired Ethernet is far far superior to wireless.
 

Lodesman

macrumors regular
Feb 4, 2014
166
33
Folkestone, Kent, UK
I had a problem whereby my download speed degraded after restart of my WiFi over a couple of days.

Replacing my BT Homehub 4 with an Airport Extreme solved all the problems (expensively!)
 

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
Even on the new router the computer is STILL doing it.
Are you surprised??? Of course it will still do it, it's the same model of router, right?

You'd expect it to still do it. It's a problem with the router's design/firmware so they will all do it. I don't know why you bothered getting it changed. You needed to try a completely different model of router.