Wifi drops intermittently on Macbook Air

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by jatin2501, Jul 23, 2016.

  1. jatin2501 macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #1
    Hello,

    The wifi on my macbook air keeps dropping intermittently but works perfectly fine on my windows laptop and android phones at the same time. I have been having this issue for over 4 months now. Note: The wifi bars at the top right corner remain the same but the internet stops working.

    Here are the details of my macbook and router:
    1. 2011 Macbook Air with OS X El Capitan v 10.11.6
    2. Router: Dlink model DIR 600M

    I have tried the below options but nothing worked:
    a. Formatting the system
    b. Upgrading from Yosemite to El Capitan
    c. Changing the wifi router from Linksys to Dlink
    d. Deleting the folder /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration and restarting the computer
    e. Adding 8.8.4.4 to the DNS tab of the Advanced settings in Network Preferences
    f. Gave the macbook to the authorized Apple service center in India. They monitored the connectivity on their wifi network for 48 hours and found no issues
    g. Contacted my local wifi network provider but they have no idea either. They only configure the router.

    The only thing that works is this:
    a. Click on the wifi bar icon(at top right corner)
    b. Click on 'Turn Wi-Fi Off'
    c. Click on the same wifi bar icon
    d. Click on 'Turn Wi-Fi On'

    Can somebody please help?

    Thanks,
    Jatin
     
  2. Superspeed500, Jul 23, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016

    Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #2
    Have you tried to do a nslookup and tried to ping a website when you lose the internet connection? You can also try to set a static IP on you Mac localy, to check if the problems are DHCP releated.

    EDIT: What's the output of this command, when you lose the internet connection: tail -n 20 /var/log/wifi.log
     
  3. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #3
    Hello Superspeed500, thanks for replying to my query. Yes, I have tried pinging google.com and I get a request timeout when I lose the internet connection. Sorry, didn't understand the static IP thing. Can you please show me how to set that up?

    I entered that command on the terminal and here is the output:

    MacBook-Air:~ jatinsaraf$ tail -n 20 /var/log/wifi.log
    Sat Jul 23 14:33:55.040 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 15:05:09.046 <kernel> Got incomplete channel sequence length 0, should be 16
    Sat Jul 23 15:05:09.057 <airportd[56]> _handleLinkEvent: WiFi is not powered. Resetting state variables.
    Sat Jul 23 15:05:13.573 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 15:27:38.975 <kernel> Got incomplete channel sequence length 0, should be 16
    Sat Jul 23 15:27:38.995 <airportd[56]> _handleLinkEvent: WiFi is not powered. Resetting state variables.
    Sat Jul 23 15:27:46.132 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 16:15:07.534 <kernel> Got incomplete channel sequence length 0, should be 16
    Sat Jul 23 16:15:07.556 <airportd[56]> _handleLinkEvent: WiFi is not powered. Resetting state variables.
    Sat Jul 23 16:15:17.380 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 16:27:15.784 <kernel> Got incomplete channel sequence length 0, should be 16
    Sat Jul 23 16:27:15.812 <airportd[56]> _handleLinkEvent: WiFi is not powered. Resetting state variables.
    Sat Jul 23 16:27:22.185 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 17:00:10.659 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 34, dataLen 2
    Sat Jul 23 17:00:10.661 <kernel> payload Data 06 00
    Sat Jul 23 20:18:22.588 <kernel> Got incomplete channel sequence length 0, should be 16
    Sat Jul 23 20:18:22.607 <airportd[56]> _handleLinkEvent: WiFi is not powered. Resetting state variables.
    Sat Jul 23 20:18:30.745 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 9, dataLen 0
    Sat Jul 23 21:34:17.098 <kernel> Unexpected payload found for message 34, dataLen 2
    Sat Jul 23 21:34:17.099 <kernel> payload Data 06 00

    Thanks,
    Jatin
     
  4. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #4
    Glad to help :) The log look normal as far as I can tell. To set a static ip go to Settings > Network > Wi-Fi > Advanced > TCP/IP. Then select the "Manual" in the "Configure IPv4". Then write in a IP that no other device have and make sure the IP is outside the network DHCP range. I can make a quick YouTube video on how to do it.

    The purpose of setting a static IP in this case is to test if the problem is within the DHCP service. Remember to set the IP to DHCP again when you connect to a diffrent network.
     
  5. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #5
    Sorry but 'log looks normal' meaning? Does it justify the net going down or does it say that the net is actually working?
    Also need to know how to find the IP that is outside the network DHCP range. I also have no idea what this DHCP range is. Please help.
     
  6. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #6
    I can't find anything unusal in the log, so your wi-fi hardware should work fine :)

    Common DHCP range for routers are 100 - 200, like for example 192.168.1.100 to 192.168.1.200. You can try to set your IP to 250, since it should be outside of the DHCP range on most routers.
     
  7. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #7
    Okay..got it..just to confirm, am attaching a screenshot of the settings where I would be making the change. So I have to enter 192.168.1.250 under IPv6 address, correct?
     

    Attached Files:

  8. dsemf macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2014
    #8
    Select the dropdown that currently shows Using DHCP. Select Manually. Enter the desired address in the IPv4 Address: data field. That will create a static ip address.

    DS
     
  9. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #9
    So I tried that and then I couldn't connect to the internet at all. Even with turning off the wifi and turning it back on. When I changed the settings back to 'Using DHCP', I could connect to the net. So I guess the manual option won't work? I had put the IPv4 address as 192.168.1.250.
     
  10. dsemf macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2014
    #10
    According to your screen shot, the network is 192.168.0 so the IPv4 address is 192.168.0.250.

    DS
     
  11. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #11
    Ohh okay..sorry..let me try that..will let you know the result..
     
  12. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #12
    My dear friend, I don't have words to thank you enough. Your solution worked. Since yesterday, there has been no drop at all. Thanks a ton. If you ever visit India, let me know. I owe you a treat :)
     
  13. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #13
    Oops, I lost the net just now and had to do that 'turn off' and 'turn on' thing to get it back :-(
    Any idea why the issue came back? Its definitely not as frequent as it used to be earlier.
     
  14. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #14
    Update: Am losing the net more often now. Its almost once in an hour. God help me!
     
  15. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

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    Jul 25, 2013
    #15
    The last resort to almost all computer problems is to reinstall the OS :/ That will wipe out all your data, but it does fix almost all software problems.
     
  16. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #16
    I wouldn't recommend that without knowing more.

    Please, what's the model identifier? http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/macbook-air/index-macbook-air.html
     
  17. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #17
    As I mentioned in my 1st post, I have already done that. Resinstalled the OS and then also upgraded from Yosemite to El Capitan but none of that helped :-(
    --- Post Merged, Aug 21, 2016 ---
    Attaching the details of my macbook's identifier.
     

    Attached Files:

  18. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #18
    MacBookAir4,2

    http://www.everymac.com/ultimate-mac-lookup/?search_keywords=MacBookAir4,2

    We have one of these (with Boot ROM version MBA41.0077.B14 and SMC version 1.73f66) that's more pernickety, about network environments, than most other types of Apple notebook. Clean installations of Mavericks and of El Capitan made no difference. Without going into too much detail: in some locations this MacBookAir4,2 had trouble with eduroam when all other nearby/adjacent Wi-Fi devices from Apple and other vendors had no trouble. Step a few feet or yards away, or into a corner (where there might be less 'overlap' from another eduroam access point) and the trouble ends. There's more to it than that (the area has been surveyed with a view to possible changes, and so on), but that's the essence: pernickety.

    Not the MacBookAir4,2 alone …

    Intel Dual Band Wireless-N 7260

    Just over a week ago someone else brought to me a notebook with Windows 8.1, presenting almost identical misbehaviours as the MacBookAir4,2. Windows identified the wireless network hardware as Intel Dual Band Wireless-N 7260.
     
  19. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #19
    Thanks for your inputs. So I live in a small one bedroom apartment and the router is in the kitchen(kind of center of the apartment) so that it provides enough coverage to the living room and the bedroom. Are you suggesting to move the router to another room in the apartment?
     
  20. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #20
    You can check the signal strength on your Wi-Fi network by holding down "Alt" (The option key on your Mac) and clicking on the wirless network statusbar icon:
    Network signal.png
    RSSI is the recived signal in dBm -20 to about -35 is great signal, -36 to -50 is good signal, -51 to about -109 is bad signal and -110 is in most cases defined as no signal. The next value to look at is noise (støy in Norwegian). That value should be as close to -100 / -110 as possible. Tx-speed (Tx-hastighet in the screenshot) is the theoretical max-speed you can get on your network. This will in most cases be higher than the actual speed due to encryption.

    Use the above information to decide if you want to move the access point or not.
     
  21. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #21
    Okay, attaching the values for my network. Looks like they don't fall in the accepted range. But the question is where do I move the router? Right now, it is in the kitchen(which is the center of my apartment). If I keep it in the bedroom, its gonna be farther away from the living room and if I keep it in the living room, it is gonna be farther away from the bedroom. Also could signal strength really be the problem here? Coz my issues also happens when I am very near to the router like 2 feet away. When I intermittently lose the wifi, all the bars are still there and I still cannot access the internet. Its like the internet connection goes to sleep very often. And then I have to wake it up by turning off the wifi(from the option under the wifi bars icon) and then turning it back on.
     

    Attached Files:

  22. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #22
    It could be that your D-link N-router could have problems talking to the network card in your Mac :/ I have the same problem between an Intel network card and a Netgear homeplug over a wired connection. Your problems are not cause by the low signal, if you have the same problems near the router. Maybe try an external wirless card in your Mac?
     
  23. jatin2501 thread starter macrumors newbie

    jatin2501

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2016
    #23
    Okay, that makes sense. The internet on my mac worked fine when connected to the wifi at the apple service center. So by external wireless card, you mean like a dongle that goes into the USB port?
     
  24. Superspeed500 macrumors regular

    Superspeed500

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    #24
    Yes, thats what i ment :) I do not have any recommendations for a good one though :0
     
  25. Fitbjj macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2016
    #25
    Hope you come up with a fix. I've been having the same problem for months. If I figure it out I'll post. Its horrible. I've had it drop during college tests which resulted in temporary failures, and instructor won't give any more retakes due to the problem.
     

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