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Internet, Networking, and Wireless Discussion of networking, internet, and wireless including Apple's Airport products.

Erratic wireless signal strength

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Member Since: Feb 26, 2008
Location: UK, near London
Posts: 44
AJB is an unknown at this point
Mac Specs: iMac 2.8 24"/ 13" macbook pro / G4 tower & cinema scrren / 12" powerbook / classic curvy G3 laptop!

AJB is offline
I am using iMac 2.8G (a few months old) and 12" powerbook at home, with a Draytek Vigor 2600G wireless router (that I have had for a while and has been entirely reliable elsewhere). Fast BT broadband.

My problem is very variable wireless signals between the Mac's, especially the iMac and the router. It can be full strength one minute and minimal or zero the next.

A windows laptap also running in my home network, has no issues with varying signal strength.

Turning airport off and on does nothing. Turning the router off always effects a temporary cure. Changing router location makes no difference, so it does not appear to be an issue with physical barriers in the house.

I would use ethernet but in the room I use as my home office, there is no telephone socket so I am forced to use wireless.

Any suggestions as to how I can make wireless performance consistent would be appreciated.

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Member Since: Nov 12, 2008
Posts: 3
corsadriver49 is on a distinguished road

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Hi. I read your post with interest as we are having an almost identical problem.We have a new iMac and we also use an almost new Samsung laptop and a 4 year old Dell PC. Our Netgear router/modem has behaved perfectly until we added the iMac to the wireless network.

Now we have a continuous signal on the PC, closest to where the router is sited, an excellent to good signal on the laptop, wherever it is used, up to 2 rooms away from the router, and a useless signal on the iMac, which varies from nothing to full strength in a second. The iMac is in the next room to the router but close to the connecting wall. We have tried rebooting the router, which as you say, effects a temporary improvement but the whole situation is a complete mystery to us. We wondered whether you had found a solution to the problem?
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Member Since: Nov 13, 2008
Posts: 2
WyandotteGuy is on a distinguished road

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A friend had similar issues and it turned out to be a virus... not sure what steps were taken to remedy the situation but i know he took his powerbook to the local genius bar and paid to have the issue resolved... might want to run a scan? -Hope this helps....
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Member Since: Oct 16, 2007
Location: Melbourne
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prwood is on a distinguished road
Mac Specs: imac 2.66ghz i5 27" 4gb

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I had major problems until I discovered my 2.4 g cordless phone was interfering with the signal. Changed to a 5.8 g & problem solved.
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Member Since: Nov 23, 2007
Location: Grimethorpe, South Yorkshire, UK
Posts: 305
shfle will become famous soon enough

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I've just posted the following on Apple discussions as several people are having similar issues (Worked for me):-

Airport signal constantly dropping out and web pages taking an age to load?

INSTANT SOLUTION (Well it worked instantly for both me and one of my friends with the exact same issues anyway!)

Simply add the following to your DNS Servers

No more constantly dropped airport signal and no more waiting for pages to load. Internet now working as fast or even faster than ever!

I'll admit that I had little confidence in this working myself (Found an old article on the web ages ago that suggested this for a similar problem but cannot for the life of me find the article now!) but was completely blown away when it actually worked a treat!

For anyone who does not know how to add DNS servers:-

Open System Preferences/Network/Airport (In left hand pane)/Advanced (Button at bottom)/DNS (Tab along top)/Click plus sign and type in (Do this for both and OK/Click Apply

Hopefully you should now have a solid connection!

iMac 20" 2.4Ghz Mac OS X (10.5.5)
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Member Since: Nov 12, 2008
Posts: 3
corsadriver49 is on a distinguished road

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Thank you so much to everyone for replying. We spent quite some time moving the router and the cordless phone, all to no avail. However I have just tried adding the suggested numbers to the DNS (thanks for the hand-holding there!) and will wait to see what happens. As very, very, long term PC users but Mac newbies, this has had us completely stumped. I'll let you know if it works in a day or so.
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