Previous 1 2 Next 27 Replies Latest reply: Jan 14, 2010 11:52 AM by debyh
transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
The Settings indicate I am connected to my local Wi-Fi network (shows the network name with a check mark in front of it), but app's that use Wi-Fi say I'm not connected. I've turned off 'ask to join', stopped Wi-Fi, powered down the phone, but as soon as it powers up again it identifies the local AP name, then a few seconds later, a check mark appears indicating that it has joined the network, but still the app's can't use it. My Mac Book works OK so the Access Point seems as though it is working properly. I did try rebooting the Airport to see if that would help, but the results were the same. I don't know what else to try. My iPhone is running the V3.1.2 firmware and as far as I know this problem started with the last firmware update. I have no idea what else to try to get this thing working again.

 8-core Mac Pro, 10GB Ram, 4TB HDD (internal), Mac OS X (10.6.1), (All tools, no talent!)
  • daussie Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I can't understand why my phone won't connect either!! Wifi is up but phone can't connect. When I turn wifi off and go to 3g network I get an error message saying "couldn't activate cellular data netwotk" !!

    Only happening on iphone 3g which I have just passed down to my son. My new 3gs is fine!!

    Any ideas, anyone??
  • sophiadad Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I have the same issue or related issue. My phone shows that I am connected to Wifi but it acts like there is no connection. I will try to open youtube or similar app. It justs waits forever and won't open. Or it will open but then it stops like it lost the connection. I can renew the lease on the connection and that will help for a bit but then I get the same problem a few minutes later. It seems like my phone connects to the wifi but then it loses the connection. I live in a place where I connect to the edge network (no 3g). It is actually quicker to use the edge network than wifi because I have to wait so long for the phone to connect with a website. I think there is some issue between my phone and the router. I use the wifi for a couple of different computers at home without problem. I just recently upgraded my phone from the original iphone to the iphone 3 G S. Same problem. Anyone with any ideas.
  • wjosten Level 10 Level 10 (93,385 points)
    First, sync your phone to create a backup.
    Next, on your phone: Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings.
    Check to see if wifi works now, if not, proceed:
    On your phone Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings make sure the phone is plugged into an outlet if you aren't using a 3gs as this can take several hours.
    Check to see if wifi works now, if it does, re-sync your content. If it doesn't, proceed:
    Restore your phone as a "new" device, as outlined here:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1414?viewlocale=en_US

    See if wifi works now, if it does, re-sync your content. If it doesn't, most likely you have a hardware problem and if sill under warranty go to an apple store for a replacement.
  • transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    I had a chance to try my 3G iPhone on a public access Wi-Fi network today and it worked perfectly. I'm wondering now if the problem I'm having on my home network is caused by the WPA/WPA2 security protocol. Have you tried your 3Gs iPhone on a Public Wi-Fi Network?
  • transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    So far I've tried the Reset and Re-Sync and neither works. Unfortunately the phone is no longer under warranty. I really don't understand how it could be a hardware problem since Public Access Wi-Fi works OK. It still seems like a firmware issue to me. Only one thing left to try and that is restoring it to factory condition, which I will do later. I also could try running the home network unsecured or secured by using known MAC addresses, just to see what happens.
  • transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Well I found the problem, but still don't understand what's happening... I switched from DHCP to a static IP address and it worked! What ever is going wrong has something to do with the way the iPhone is handling the DHCP request. Strange since, when in DHCP, I can renew the lease and it doesn't generate an error. To make sure the DHCP server is working, I switched the MacBook to DHCP and it didn't have any problem getting a valid network address. For those of you still having Wi-Fi problems, you might try switching to a static IP and see if it works.
  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (27,130 points)
    Make sure your router has the latest firmware version. If the check mark appears open the connection information by tapping the arrow to the right of the network name. Look at the IP address. If it begins 169.254.... this means that the router did not assign an IP address to the phone so the phone chose an ad hoc address. This is a router problem. Try power cycling the router, or resetting it. If you have MAC filtering enabled make sure the phone's WiFi address is registered in the router.
  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (27,130 points)
    That's a workaround. The question is why isn't the router assigning an IP address. It could be out of date firmware or other incompatibilities. Or perhaps it just needs to be power cycled or reset.
  • transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    I have now tested the DHCP server with three different computers and they all were assigned valid IP addresses. Up until the last iPhone firmware update, the iPhone was being assigned IP addresses. What ever is causing this is a recent event. Same router, same everything except the iPhone firmware.
  • SteveCWatkins Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)
    I gotta agree - to some degree - with the theory that the iPhone after 3.1 seems to have some sort of firmware issue relating to WiFi.

    I recently upgraded all of my equipment. It's state of the art stuff, recent firmware, etc... I have DSL with a WiFi access-point/router, and a repeater in a separate building. The whole network is running in G, and using WPA2 security. Normally, my 3GS connects to the main router and/or the repeater just fine. The WPA2 presents no problems whatsoever.

    But occasionally the iPhone does have trouble similar to the kind mentioned above. In settings, there is a check-mark next to the WiFi network, but the WiFi symbol either doesn't come on at the top of the screen, or it disappears quickly and reverts back to the 3G symbol. Further investigation (clicking on the > arrow on the right side of the WiFi network tab) indicates that while the iPhone is connected to the router - it has no IP address from the DHCP server. This happens while other computers easily negotiate IP addresses with the DHCP server. I'm able to resolve it eventually with power cycles or resetting network settings. Once the iPhone successfully negotiates the IP address from DHCP, it'll work just fine on the LAN for days or even weeks on end, even after I've logged onto other WiFi networks in other areas.

    On some occasions, I think failures to connect have been the result of IP conflicts on the network - either with another machine, or with the repeater. These were resolved with full resets of all the equipment and devices.

    I do think that somehow, this hints at a possible cause of problems with the iPhone. It seems to me that it handles its IP address differently than do other devices. Windows XP or 7 on my computers seems to handle IP addresses in a truly dynamic fashion, so that when the machine powers down or sleeps, it acquires a new address from DHCP each time it powers back up (if a new address is necessary). By contrast, the iPhone seems to want to hold onto the same IP address indefinitely through sleep-wake cycles (because of the nature of its power state in contrast to a computer, I suppose). Sometimes, I think that while the iPhone is in sleep state (in which state it disconnects from WiFi and reverts to 3G), the router's DHCP server hands out an IP address to a computer that the iPhone is still holding on to, and then when the iPhone wakes up, there's a conflict and it doesn't know what to do to resolve it. This seems to be why renewing the lease or turning WiFi off, or resetting network settings seems to help.

    All that to say, there is SOME problem that my iPhone has connecting to DHCP that none of my other devices have. They all connect quickly and without issue every time, whereas occasionally, the iPhone has trouble.

    I think it's got to be a firmware (not a hardware) issue, where the iPhone OS has trouble completing the DHCP handshake under some conditions. It seems to me - as I said above - that this MAY have to do with the way the iPhone tries to retain its IP address in sleep state, where the Router may reassign that address to the next device that connects to the network, resulting in a conflict that the iPhone has trouble resolving.

    From my experience - the best you can do is to follow the advice given above. Make SURE your router's firmware is up to date. Try renewing the lease on the iPhone's WiFi connection. If that fails, then reset the network settings and power-cycle the phone (full reset). You may need to power cycle your router also - in order to reset the DHCP server, to eliminate any IP conflicts.

    Some people have noticed that setting a static IP address on the iPhone helps, which also seems to indicate that the core issue may have to do with the DHCP handshake. You might try assigning a static IP that is at the upper end of the DHCP server's range (so that it won't try to hand that address dynamically to another device).

    Hope that helps some... let me know what you find, or any thoughts you all have.

    Message was edited by: SteveCWatkins
  • transco Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Very strange! I put my iPhone back into DHCP mode and discovered the IP address it is being assigned (or it thinks it is being assigned) is 10.6.96.23. I have no idea where it is getting that from. My DHCP server is assigning addresses in the 192.168.x.x range and, as stated above, all other computers and appliances on my network using DHCP, are being assigned addresses in that range. I even tried putting my iPhone back in its factory state, and it still picked up that IP address.
  • SteveCWatkins Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)
    @transco -

    I've seen the same thing. Either in that same range, or a totally different one, the iPhone lists an IP address that isn't from my router's DHCP range. I think they may be 'placeholder' sorts of addresses that get filled in if it can't negotiate a true one from the gateway.
  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (27,130 points)
    The 10.... range is what it should be for an Apple Airport. Most other inexpensive routers use 192.168...
  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (27,130 points)
    SteveCWatkins wrote:
    I do think that somehow, this hints at a possible cause of problems with the iPhone. It seems to me that it handles its IP address differently than do other devices. Windows XP or 7 on my computers seems to handle IP addresses in a truly dynamic fashion, so that when the machine powers down or sleeps, it acquires a new address from DHCP each time it powers back up (if a new address is necessary). By contrast, the iPhone seems to want to hold onto the same IP address indefinitely through sleep-wake cycles (because of the nature of its power state in contrast to a computer, I suppose). Sometimes, I think that while the iPhone is in sleep state (in which state it disconnects from WiFi and reverts to 3G), the router's DHCP server hands out an IP address to a computer that the iPhone is still holding on to, and then when the iPhone wakes up, there's a conflict and it doesn't know what to do to resolve it. This seems to be why renewing the lease or turning WiFi off, or resetting network settings seems to help.

    You may be on to something here. First, I don't have the problem described, so I can't speak from experience. Go to your router's settings and look at the lease time. Make this a big number (like 9999) and see if that helps.
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