Wifi Issues with MBP 2018?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by solaraMAC, Aug 27, 2018.

  1. solaraMAC macrumors newbie

    Jun 18, 2018
    Is anyone else having issues with wifi? I'm on a 15" MBP 2.6/16GB/512GB/560X. I have to turn my wifi off and then back on because the network just won't load up anything. The wifi connection is strong, but I just can't connect to the internet. This is happening regularly... about every hour or so?
  2. coca_deva macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2018
    I wouldn't say every hour but YES.
    I can confirm on both Enterprise 802.11x network and standard WPA2 home-network

    Edit: Macbook pro 13" 2018.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    So far, so good with my 2.2/16gb model. Its been on wifi and not dropping it at all since day 1.
  4. Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    I've seen some comments about possible issues with the DNS service.

    Next time this happens, where you seem to have wifi connectivity but cannot get to the Internet, go into Activity Monitor, then the Network page, and find the mDNSresponder service and restart it and see if that makes things work again without requiring cycling the connection.

    I'm not suggesting that this is a fix, but just curious if it's the same issue.
  5. New_Mac_Smell macrumors 68000


    Oct 17, 2016
    Check the WiFi channels also. A lot of the time these issues are down to the router, very rarely is it an actual hardware problem. I think sometimes people migrate from one machine to another, and something goes wrong on the software side of things.

    Anyway check through your router settings, every hour is suspicious and to me would hint at a IP renewal issue. Just to make sure, use static IP's that don't expire any time soon.
  6. o_0 macrumors newbie

    Sep 25, 2017
    Had same problem, turned out to be a badly shielded usb hub interfering with 2.4GHz. Changed to 5GHz and the problem was solved. 2018 15" MBP i9 2.9/32GB/512GB/560X
  7. haralds macrumors 6502a


    Jan 3, 2014
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Mine is working fine.
    I have a mesh network across my spread out house. I ended up with sporadic problems on one end. With the help of the Amplifi engineer, who reported noise in the reports, I realized that the switching power supply of my robo-vac was creating havoc. Moving it to another wall removed that issue, although the poor thing still bunches up some carpets at times.
    You might want to check for potential noise sources.
  8. wchigo macrumors 6502


    Apr 6, 2015
    In general my wifi has been working well. The only issue I had with wifi was it not automatically connecting to known networks from sleep, which was easily remedied with a quick Google search. Since then, have had 0 problems. 2018 15" MBP i7 2.6/16GB/512GB/560X
  9. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    I too had the problem on my 13" i5 model but only once in a week of light use. I've since moved over to the Mojave beta so it remains to be seen if the problem recurs there.
  10. sunapple macrumors 68000


    Jul 16, 2013
    The Netherlands
    My dad had WiFi issues on his 2018 15" as well.

    His phone, my phone and my MacBook would work fine, but his MBP lost connection for like 5-10 minutes every hour or so (could be more often). Rebooting the router worked, but when it happened again, turning WiFi off and back on again also did the trick. I'd say it's a bug that's exclusive to the 2018 MBP based on these facts.

    We can wait and see if it happens more often. I think I remember similar issues related to specific Mac models in the past which where resolved with a software update. I think making noise about it on the forums helps.
  11. DCWolfie macrumors member


    Aug 5, 2010
    Have you fixed this? I've got the same problem. Brand new MPB 2.6/16GB/512GB/560X (same as you). Randomly looses internet connection while connected to the router. All other units works, but not my Mac. If I wait a while it starts working again.

    I've found out that if I hold down option and press the WiFi icon in the toolbar, it reconnects almost immediately. Also the solution you provide, turning WiFi on and off works as well. Super strange... The Mac was installed clean (no backup) and I tried to reinstall the operating system.

    Any clue what could be done to fix this? Or is this just mainly a hardware problem?
  12. Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016

    Which router are you using?
    Do you have any USB devices plugged in?
    Is your network split between 2.4GHz and 5GHz? Or all a mishmash in a single SSID?
  13. solouki, Nov 15, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    WiFi issues...

    Hi DCWolfe,

    Yes, I've seen and carefully documented numerous WiF-related connectivity issues on three different 2018 MBPs.

    I have a strong signal to noise ratio (RSSI=-40dBm, Noise=-90dBm as measured by the 2018 MBPs) using a 5GHz router (actually I also tested a second 5GHz router and found the same 2018 MBP WiFi problems).

    When I see the WiFi connectivity problems on the 2018 MBP, my iMac, 2016 MBP, 2015 MBP, iPhones, Apple Watch, HomePod, Linux PCs, Raspberry Pis, WiFi speakers, Alexa, etc., all still have WiFi connectivity -- i.e., the WiFi problems only exist on the 2018 MBPs.

    This is not a WiFi hardware problem directly, as I've performed Wireshark packet sniffing (promiscuous mode) of my WiFi LAN from another computer during the WiFi connectivity problems on the 2018 MBPs and found that the 2018 MBPs were still sending and receiving some WiFi packets. At times it looked like the 2018 MBPs lost their DNS service, but when I checked (scutil --dns) the 2018 MBPs still has the correct DNS servers.

    But this problem is also more multifaceted than just DNS and WiFi routers, since I've also seen multiple AirDrop failures on the 2018 MBPs too. Now AirDrop uses bluetooth (zeroconf, Bonjour) to establish a P2P (peer-to-peer) private and firewalled WiFi connection, thus should be independent of the WiFi router and wireless LAN (otherwise you wouldn't be able to do AirDrop unless you were attached to a WiFi router -- but you can). I've seen numerous AirDrop failures from my iMac to the 2018 MBPs (located on the same desktop), I've seen numerous AirDrop failures from my iPhone X to the 2018 MBPs (iPhone held in my hand sitting at my desk), and I've seen numerous AirDrop failures to the 2018 MBPs from my 2016 MBP (located in the same room about 8 feet away). I've also done packet sniffing during the AirDrop failures and found packets from the 2018 MBPs, so the WiFi hardware was still working. And again, these AirDrop failures only occur when AirDropping to the 2018 MBPs, I've never seen these issues between any other pairs of my other Apple devices, only when one device is the 2018 MBP have I seen AirDrop failures.

    I've experienced multiple rsync and ssh "broken pipe" errors that kill my large data set transfers to and from the 2018 MBPs (rsync, by the way, is what Carbon Copy Cloner uses to perform its cloning magic).

    I've had Mac App Store updates fail on the 2018 MBPs while simultaneously my iMac and 2016 MBP were successfully updating from the Mac App Store over the same WiFi LAN connected to the same WiFi router.

    I've had third party software updates fail (like MacPorts, GPGTools, and TexLive) while my iMac and 2016 MBP were simultaneously successfully updating over the same WiFi router.

    I've seen the macOS (after SSD erasure and clean install of the macOS from the network with no other software nor files transferred to the 2018 MBP) improperly delete a file from an SMB-mounted RAID0 HDD. I've only ever seen this happen from the 2018 MBP, not from any of my other Macs or Linux PCs which I've been using for the last decade. Most likely another WiFi connectivity issue on the 2018 MBP.

    In my hands, these WiFi connectivity issues are rare (I worked on the 2018 MBPs for around 18 hours a day and I'd experience a WiFi problem about every 1 to 3 days), random (I couldn't figure out how to consistently reproduce these WiFi issues), and often intermittent (numerous times I've seen the WiFi connection re-established on its own in less than a minute, but I've also waited for 150 minutes and not had it "self-fix" and so had to fix it manually). Therefore, because of the rare, random, and intermittent nature, Apple service has an extremely difficult time finding the problem (the WiFi hardware passes hardware tests and the WiFi disconnections happen so rarely that unless you are using the machine for long periods you won't see them). I also suspect that these WiFi disconnections are much more prevalent than it appears simply because of their intermittent self-fixing nature. For instance, while watching YouTube videos you would probably rarely see a self-fixing WiFi disconnection because of buffering of the videos.

    If you wish, the following link contains further information (and other solouki posts on this page 95 lists potentially related issues):


    By the way, I very carefully documented all of these WiFi connectivity issues, including pcap packet capture files, and uploaded the documentation to Apple Support, all to no avail.

    Good luck to you. I hope you find a solution, but in my hands I couldn't solve this problem -- yes, I can manually fix the disconnections, but I couldn't stop the disconnections from happening.

    EDIT: Interestingly, I searched these forums for YouTube video issues on the 2018 MBPs, and did find some posts listing problems watching/listening to YouTube on the 2018 MBPs that could(?) be attributed to intermittent WiFi connectivity issues.

    EDIT 2: Forgot to mention, I have these WiFi connection problems even when nothing is attached to the 2018 MBPs, i.e., no USB devices plugged into the T3 ports.
  14. DCWolfie macrumors member


    Aug 5, 2010
    I'm using Jensen 9000 (Scandinavian brand http://www.jensenofscandinavia.com/en/product/lynx-9000/).
    I don't have any USB-devices plugged in, I do have a WD EX2 NAS connected through one of the ethernet ports.
    The network is split between 2.5 and 5GHZ, I mainly use 5Ghz as there are a lot of interference on 2.5Ghz.

    Though I can't see how the router can be the problem, given that my other units works when the MBP stops working.

    Yes, this is exactly the same as me. (RSSI=-67dBm (a bit weaker), Noise=-92dBm, with 5Ghz connected). I've tried numerous times to watch the status when I'm loosing connection through the app WiFi Scanner, but there are no changes when this happens.

    Yep, this is the same results I see. I got an iPhone X, Apple Watch, MacMini, Windows 10 tower, Sonos... all without any connection issues.

    At least that's some good news. I've not done any packet sniffing, but your experience is identical as me (except the deleting of the file).

    I do experience this more regularly than ever 1 to 3 days. For me it's almost every day. I have almost the same work routine as you, just a bit less (around 10-15h/day).

    I've kept Apple Wireless Diagnostic running to see if it can detect the dropout, and it certainly does. Unfortunately I'm unable to understand, or conclude anything from the log data. If anyone is, give me a callout and I'll send the log.

    I do see that it fixes it self at some time, but it usually takes a while. Given e.g. watching a youtube video, I will experience the buffering before it fixes it self. Most of the times, it takes way to long for me so I manually fixes it with holding down option-key and pressing the WiFi icon in the toolbar. Could you try checking if this works with you as well? It's a weird solution, but it seems to force the MBP to fix the issue rather quickly.

    Thank you, unfortunately my knowledge on networks aren't good so I'll have to rely on the knowledge of others :(.

    I do experience these problems with YouTube as well, but also when just browsing pages, within apps, etc. For me it's not consistent when I loose the connection.

    That is the same with me. No consistency with what's connected to the machine. A weird thing I like to point out, which made me belive it could be a hardware problem (given that I've done a clean install of macOS), is that this is my second MBP 2018, but the only one with the problem. I had another MBP (it was the baseline 15-inch) for a few weeks without any kind of problems. As soon as I bought this I started experience them.
  15. solouki, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    Thanks for your detailed information, I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one suffering from all of these issues. I don't watch many YouTube videos, and, in fact, thinking about it, I've never watched a YouTube video on the three 2018 MBPs that I've had, but I suspect that these WiFi connectivity issues might possibly produce YouTube video watching problems, but since these WiFi issues often "fix" themselves quickly, with YouTube video buffering most WiFi issues will go undetected.

    Also, I only detect a WiFi connectivity problem once every 1 to 3 days because for my workload I'm not using WiFi continuously, and I only detect these problems when I'm actively using WiFi. I suspect that I experience WiFi problems more often, I just don't detect them. [EDIT: And speaking of detecting these WiFi issues, on my second 2018 MBP the Wireless Diagnostics app's Monitoring didn't work so I couldn't continuously monitor the WiFi from the 2018 MBP.]

    If you look at my earlier WiFi connectivity posts, you will see that the WiFi connectivity issues affect Safari, Mac App Store updates, AirDrop, rsync/ssh, Software Update, etc.

    Thanks again, much appreciated!
  16. DCWolfie macrumors member


    Aug 5, 2010
    Well, thank you for taking your time to help me.

    Yeah, that might be the case for a lot of people.

    I see. For my workload I'm pretty much depended on having network. For example I use Slack daily to communicating with my team. I've not specifically noticed if there is a specific app that creates the problem. I do see that everything gets affected.

    I can confirm that it's not Safari, Mac AppStore nor AirDrop, as I've experienced it without using those apps (could of course be some background process).

    I'm not sure if you noticed my quick fix for this problem (the one with using the option-key). If you do ever run into this again, check if that fixes your problem faster. I don't know if it can be used to anything, but it's an interesting find.

    I just did a reinstall of my router, with a new SSID, just to rule out that it could be something to do with config files. As network names and password are shared among Apple products. I'll update if this works.
  17. Howard2k, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    I've seen two reports of folks having issues with their 2018 MBPro and 2017 iMac Pro machines intermittently dropping connection to the Linksys Velop series in particular. The connection stays live according to macOS, but the packets are sent and received at a significantly reduced rate, rendering the wifi basically useless (although still shows that it's connected), while other devices worked unfettered.

    The MBPro and the iMac Pro both use the same wifi chipset.

    If there's an incompatibility between the chipset in the MBPro and the Linksys Velop (and I'm not saying that there is, I only recall seeing two reports) it wouldn't be the first time that such a thing has happened. If the Jensen 9000 uses the same chipset as the Linksys Velop then that would be an interesting coincidence, if nothing else.

    At a glance I don't see any documentation on the specific chipset inside the Jensen, but for the reason I mentioned above, it's obviously worthwhile to know as much about any given wifi deployment as possible in order to troubleshoot issues in the wifi deployment.
  18. solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    Yes, I'm pretty sure these WiFi issues are not caused by any of these apps, rather these apps suffer the consequences of the WiFi disconnections. I've also seen many, many times of the very low level "ping" utility not working when all of my other machines simultaneous can ping. And since AirDrop fails it means that these problems also have nothing to do with the WiFi routers since AirDrop does not rely on your WiFi router (it works off of a P2P WiFi connection).

    Yes, I saw your quick fix, thanks. My issues are not how to fix the disconnections, I can do that, my issues are related to the facts that these WiFi disconnects have killed my transfer of large data sets using rsync/ssh. I can even live with the occasional failures of Mac App Store updates, Software Update updates, and Safari failures, these I just repeat the downloads. But when my rsync/ssh transfers fail, or worse, corrupt the data (I have seen the macOS improperly delete a file on a SMB-mounted HDD), this I can't live with. My codes and writings stem from the last 25 years, and I can't risk corrupting this work simply to use the 2018 MBPs. (I has also seen the macOS corrupt a file on its own internal SSD, in fact, I have cryptographic proof of this -- you can't get much better proof than cryptographic proof.)

    Thanks, please let me know if you are successful with this. In total, I have seen these WiFi connectivity issues on the 2018 MBPs networked to Apple Time Capsules, to a Netgear 802.11ac router, and to a Linksys 802.11ac router. So I also do not believe that these WiFi troubles are due to the type of router in use.
  19. Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    To be clear, I’m not suggesting that this specific issue *is* due to a specific Wi-Fi router, I’m suggesting that it’s worthwhle knowing as much as possible about the scenario in order to diagnose it and at least determine whether those scenarios are worthy or consideration or not.
  20. solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    Howard2k, thanks for your useful information. Just to let you know, I've experienced these WiFi connectivity issues on the 2018 MBPs networked to three different types of routers, 3 different Apple Time Capsules (5GHz), a Netgear 802.11ac router (5GHz), and a Linksys 802.11ac router (5GHz). I also live in a neighborhood that is relatively free of wireless network congestion -- yes, I can "see" other wireless networks, but their signal levels are typically equal to or lower than my noise level. My signal levels are RSSI=-40dBm while my noise levels are Noise=-90dBm, so my signal to noise ratios are excellent.

    In addition, I've also had numerous AirDrop failures that I've documented between the 2018 MBP (all 3 of them) and an iMac (located on the same desk), a 2016 MBP (located 8 feet away), a 2015 MBP (located in the next room), and two iPhone Xs (held in my hand while attempting to AirDrop iPhone photos and videos). Since AirDrop doesn't rely on the WiFi router, these AirDrop WiFi connectivity issues have nothing to do with the specific router in use.

    And finally, while the 2018 MBPs were experiencing WiFi disconnects, all of my other machines, including an iMac, a 2016 MBP, a 2015 MBP, a Mac mini, HomePod, two iPhone Xs, one Apple Watch, two Linux PCs, six Raspberry Pis, Alexa Echo, etc. still maintained WiFi and Internet connectivity simultaneously through the same WiFi routers -- in other words, only the 2018 MBPs experienced the WiFi disconnects with all of my other equipment still connected.
  21. Howard2k, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016

    Yeah that’s pretty compelling. It’s unfortunate that wifi isn’t as consistent as we’d like. Even within the defined standards the are different implementations and interpretations.

    Have you ruled out any issues between the MBPro, channel selection, and DFS?

    And at a glance the iMac never has its vintage mentioned. I don’t remember seeing that. Is that the bastard red headed step child? The black sheep? What year is it out of interest?

    Edit: doesn’t sound like DFS issues, giving it more thought. But hey, may as well try to rule it out.
  22. solouki, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    I did try different 5GHz channels ... no help. Actually, my local neighborhood is relatively free of wireless routers, and there are no routers that cause me any interference issues. My S/N ratios are excellent.

    Ah, yes, I did mention in one of my earliest posts on the BridgeOS thread that my iMac is a late 2013 iMac CTO (but don't worry, I'm not insulted that you didn't see this; ... let me wipe the water off of my keyboard, I'm just crying in silence here). The iMac is still a fairly fast machine for my workload, albeit the 2018 MBPs are roughly 50% faster at compiling and number crunching testing, and nearly 50% faster at LaTeX typesetting my scientific/mathematics writings (25 years worth). So I really appreciated the speed bump, but because of two file corruption issues (one related to WiFi, one not related to WiFi) I cannot trust the 2018 MBPs any longer for my work (I can't risk 25 years of work on an unreliable machine). I guess I'll have to take up watching YouTube videos on the 2018 MBP since I can't trust it for work.

    EDIT: Actually, I typically only list the vintage of the MBPs since I need to distinguish the 2018 MBPs from my other MBPs, currently a 2016 MBP and a 2015 MBP. Over the last decade I have purchased over 17 Macs, 11 of these were high-end CTO machines, and on none of these other Macs have I had any of the problems that I have experienced with the 2018 MBPs. And all of these other machines were running precisely the same codes, compiling exactly the same programs, and typesetting using exactly the same TeXLive software as my 2018 MBPs -- in a nutshell, 2018 = problems, unreliable; non-2018 = no problems, reliable.

    EDIT 2: I actually have wanted to upgrade my iMac to the latest technology, but I was kind of waiting to see what the Mac Pros would bring. (But with my experiences with the 2018 MBP I'm not sure I'm still that interested in the Mac Pros.)
  23. Howard2k, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    Yeah. If you’re seeing this on 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz it’s not DFS.

    Your analysis has been thorough.

    Problem occurs on:
    * both 2.4 and 5.
    * Through router (infrastructure mode) and “adhoc” (based on air drop, which I assume uses adhoc setup).
    * signal strength is great.
    * noise is low.
    * other devices are unaffected.
    * appears to be higher layer protocol independent (rsync, SMB).

    Last throw of the dice - Can you reproduce this issue in a materially different location? At work and at home? In a coffee shop if you has an iPhone and MBPro? Is there a way to confirm that it’s reproduceable in more than one location? I know it’s difficult if it’s intermittent. Apologies if you addressed this already. Posting from my phone so taxing to see all the text.

    I realize that logically this makes no sense. If the air drop works st home between iPhone and anything else, then it shows that there’s no magical interference. But hey, like I said, last throw of the dice.
  24. solouki, Nov 16, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018

    solouki macrumors member


    Jan 5, 2017
    I'm pretty sure its not DFS issues, as I'm about 18 miles from the nearest airport and several miles from the nearest weather radar. Although, occasionally, very occasionally, a B1B passes directly overhead on its way to its bombing practice range - but I don't think this is a problem for me.

    In a nutshell, since none of my other computers/devices suffer from the WiFi connectivity issues that the 2018 MBPs do, I'm fairly certain that it is not a DFS problem.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 16, 2018 ---
    In general, I stick with 5GHz because of the 80MHz bandwidth and thus general faster data transfer speeds. While I did briefly try 2.4GHz, I didn't thoroughly test 2.4GHz.

    My understanding of AirDrop is that it employs Bluetooth (zeroconf, Bonjour) to establish a peer-to-peer private and firewalled WiFi connection -- this is why AirDrop is so much faster than simple bluetooth file transfers. AirDrop I'm pretty sure doesn't rely on your WiFi router (otherwise you wouldn't be able to AirDrop between devices not connected to a wireless LAN).

    My signal levels are RSSI=-40dBm while the noise levels are Noise=-90dBm, as measured by the 2018 MBPs themselves. So my S/N ratios are excellent.

    All of my other devices are unaffected during the time the 2018 MBPs loose WiFi connection.

    And, yes, happens to Safari, rsync, SMB, ssh, ping, AirDrop, Mac App Store, Software Update, rsync-ing from MacPorts, etc.

    I have seen a single WiFi disconnect at office, everything else (a multitude of instances) at home. The most likely reason is because in my hands these WiFi issues are rare (happening only once every 1-3 days), random (no commonality between problems, i.e., not the same apps, code runs, etc.), and often intermittent (often self-correcting after just a few moments, but I have also waited 150 minutes without the WiFi correcting itself so I had to manually fix the problem). Thus I wouldn't expect to see these WiFi problems unless I drink 150 cups of coffee at my local Starbucks.

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