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Question: Bluetooth Keyboard Disconnects

On a recent 27 in 5K iMac, I suddenly started getting Keyboard disconnects, after I re-charged the Magic Mouse 2 & Keyboard. I'd had no problems prior to that. Following a period of Sleep, the only way I could Login back in was to connect the Keyboard with its cable, & use a separate USB wired Mouse. As soon as I was logged in, I could disconnect the Keyboard Cable, and both Keyboard and Magic Mouse continued to work, until the next sleep.

I then upgraded to 10.13.3 Supplemental Update, and followed advice to untick System Preferences/General/iCloud Handoff, which gave me 18 hours of zero problems. When actually working, the Signal strength for the Keyboard and Mouse is usually better than -50 dBm. -46 or -47 being typical. Since I have the Energy Saver to activate after 10 minutes, and put the screen to sleep, I discovered the Screen Saver was set to activate after 20 minutes, so I stopped the latter. I've also turned off my 2.4 GHz WiFi, & have experimented with aluminium sheets to screen external hypothetical interference, as well as using a WiFi Signal Analyser.

Now I have a situation, where Bluetooth works following a sleep, most of the time, so I can log back in, but as soon as I've done a little typing, I lose the Keyboard connection, and with the Mac busy trying to find it, it appears to completely ignore the Mouse, and often lose it too. I have to connect the Keyboard via USB, get the Mouse working, then unplug the USB connection to the Keyboard and hope it continues to work via Bluetooth.

Today the Bluetooth Icon on the menubar even stated: "Bluetooth Not Available" after a Keyboard loss. Opening System Preferences/Bluetooth fixed that issue.

How do I or Apple fix this problem?

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2017), macOS High Sierra (10.13.3)

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Mar 11, 2018 12:38 PM in response to Barry Hemphill In response to Barry Hemphill

Thank you for your reply, which I obeyed.

At first I thought it had solved my problem (with my 2.4 GHz WiFi turned off). But then I had to turn my WiFi back on for a short while to download to a Kindle, after which I turned the 2.4 GHz WiFi back off. While the WiFi was on, the Keyboard & Mouse worked fine, but after a sleep, they became disconnected again, & I had to connect the Keyboard to USB, & reconnect the Bluetooth Mouse, using the always connected wired mouse. With WiFi on, the Bluetooth signal strength was -50 dBm for each. Now that I have the 2.4 GHz WiFi off, I'm back to the same old problem. After a short sleep, I generally still have working Bluetooth connections, but after a longer sleep, they are disconnected. I then have to wire connect the keyboard, & use a second mouse to try & connect the bluetooth one.

This is a characteristic fault I've had on other iMacs, with no bluetooth connection following a sleep or re-boot.

Surely I'm not meant to reset the NVRAM & SMC all the time? It is definitely connected to Sleep behaviour, but why did I have many weeks with WiFi on before trouble started?

This started me looking through my logs, and the only difference to the Mac was that I had installed Android File Transfer, for copying photos from my mobile, several days earlier. On checking the Activity Monitor, even though I am not currently using it, a process called Android File Transfer Agent is running all the time.

Could this be the real culprit?

Mar 11, 2018 12:38 PM

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Mar 13, 2018 3:35 PM in response to Barry Hemphill In response to Barry Hemphill

My problem is now solved, and thanks for everyone's help.

It now seems conclusive that all my Bluetooth Keyboard & Mouse disconnection problems, especially after Sleeps, were caused by Google's "Android File Transfer.app" & its associated "Android File Transfer Agent.app". Since removing them, I have not had a single Bluetooth problem.

When you download & first run "Android File Transfer.app", it puts a copy of "Android File Transfer Agent.app" in Users/this user/Library/Application Support/Google/Android File Transfer/ and in addition sets the agent as a Login Item for the user.

Mar 13, 2018 3:35 PM

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Question: Bluetooth Keyboard Disconnects