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HT3728: Resetting an AirPort base station FAQ

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HT3728 my macbook pro keeps dropping my internet

388 Views 12 Replies Latest reply: Feb 24, 2013 6:55 AM by willismom RSS
willismom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Feb 21, 2013 8:01 AM

i was wondering if the Airport Utilities had anything to do with it .... it just keeps searching and searching ...


should it have an address ????


i have rebooted the server many times, and the internet stays on for a while, and then goes off ...

i have never had this problem before - we are traveling and sharing internet with another person ...


no one has problems except me and everyone else has a PC


any thoughts ???


iPad 2, iOS 5.1.1
  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 21, 2013 9:15 AM (in response to willismom)

    Just how are you sharing internet with another person? Does this other person have a device to create a wifi hotspot? What sort of device?


    Unless the device creating the wifi hotspot you are using happens to be an Apple-brand AirPort Express or AirPort Extreme, it is unlikely that the AirPort Utility will be applicable.

  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 21, 2013 9:49 AM (in response to willismom)

    Sorry, more questions so we can get a better picture of your situation:


    How is this modem connected to the internet? Through a cellular data network, by an ethernet cable, by a coax cable, or some other way?


    May I assume you are using the iPad 2 mentioned in your profile, connected by wifi to the modem?


    When you say you are traveling, do you mean changing locations frequently or just away from home at one or two remote locations?


    How far away from the modem are you trying to use your iPad when the problem happens? Are there intervening walls? If so, what kind?

  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 21, 2013 2:34 PM (in response to willismom)

    I'm still not clear on how the modem hooks to the internet. Cell phone, traditional phone line, coaxial cable, fiber?


    He has a PC connected to the modem. Is that a wired connection or wifi?


    Your iPad and MacBook Pro connect by wifi -- to his PC or his modem? (Which is generating the wifi signal?)


    Is the wifi network 2.4GHz, 5GHz, or dual-band? If dual-band, which frequency is each device involved using?


    The wifi network originates in one trailer, and you are trying to use it in a second trailer about 20 feet away. Are the trailer sides between metal?


    Are both your iPad and your MacBook Pro in roughly the same areas of your trailer at the times when your Mac is having trouble and your iPad is not?


    What are the age or year of your MacBook Pro? What version of [Mac] OS X is it running?


    Three others are using PCs. How are they connecting? Wire or wifi? To the modem or to his PC? Are they in his trailer, in your trailer, in another trailer, or just nearby?

  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 21, 2013 3:27 PM (in response to willismom)

    OK, so he has a router involved in addition to the modem. I think we can drop the question of how the modem is connected to the internet. Presumably, everything else is connected through the router.


    Your MBP is new enough that it should be competent to connect at either 2.4GHz or 5GHz, but it might be relevant if it is chosing a different frequency from your iPad. You can find out the frequency of the MBP by holding down the "option" key while pulling down the wifi menu from the nested-arc icon in the menu bar. A group of paler gray lines should appear under the name of the active (checked) network. The third one should start with "Channel:" and end with "(2.4GHz)" or "(5GHz)". Also note the content of the 6th line (Transmit Rate).


    It's harder to tell the frequency and speed on the iPad, but you at least check that you are using the same network. Just tap Settings on the home screen, then Wi-Fi, and look for the active (checked) network name. It should be the same as the name on the MBP. If the wifi network is single-frequency, both devices will be using the same frequency; if dual-frequency, they may not be.


    The frequency may be especially relevant because the two bands have different penetrating abilities. I would imagine this is true even with metal walls. (Metal walls are not particularly conducive to radio transmission in the first place.)


    I am surprised to hear that your network host "has to unplug and shut down everything when my Mac doesn't work." Wasn't it enough to shut down and restart the wifi connection from the Mac, or shut down and restart the entire Mac? Was that what you meant when you said you "have rebooted the server many times"?

  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2013 9:07 PM (in response to willismom)

    Was it saying "no IP address" or "self-assigned IP address"? Either would be likely to cause network settings to show up invalid, which in turn would make the rest fail.


    Is the Mac set up to use DHCP? I'm guessing so if it is not getting a routable address.

  • markwmsn Level 4 Level 4 (3,945 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 23, 2013 9:42 PM (in response to willismom)

    If you get that message again, let us know the specific text.


    No, I don't think the speed has anything to do with being able to hold the connection open. More likely, some aspect of the connection at the trailers is somewhat flaky in a way that bothers the Mac more than the iPad or the PCs.


    I suppose it's always possible that it might correct itself.


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