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

Periodic Airport Outage


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Andreas
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I recently set up a wireless network in my house. The imac downstairs is the base machine, and one Titanium 1Ghz and one Aluminum 1.25 Ghz powerbook are accessing using their built in airport cards.

I downloaded an application that lets me view the detailed signal strength in real time, and with that checked the performance of the two powerbooks. The aluminum one is fine, even in the farthest corner of the house gives reliable signal strength.

The Ti on the other hand, gives good signal strength, but exhibits some wierd behavior. In the farthest corner of the house, the strength will be about 50-60%, but as soon as you try to send or recieve alot of data, like download a 1MB file, the signal cuts off to zero, stays at zero for about 5 seconds, then comes back to 50%, in a perfect square wave. This happens repeatedly, with the exact same 5 sec square wave, but only when data is being tranferred!

It is not the wireless router I dont think, because the other powerbook works fine. Can anyone help?? I wanted to get an external antena, but this does not sound like a signal strength issue.

Thanks,
Andreas
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.emo.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andreas
I recently set up a wireless network in my house. The imac downstairs is the base machine, and one Titanium 1Ghz and one Aluminum 1.25 Ghz powerbook are accessing using their built in airport cards.

I downloaded an application that lets me view the detailed signal strength in real time, and with that checked the performance of the two powerbooks. The aluminum one is fine, even in the farthest corner of the house gives reliable signal strength.

The Ti on the other hand, gives good signal strength, but exhibits some wierd behavior. In the farthest corner of the house, the strength will be about 50-60%, but as soon as you try to send or recieve alot of data, like download a 1MB file, the signal cuts off to zero, stays at zero for about 5 seconds, then comes back to 50%, in a perfect square wave. This happens repeatedly, with the exact same 5 sec square wave, but only when data is being tranferred!

It is not the wireless router I dont think, because the other powerbook works fine. Can anyone help?? I wanted to get an external antena, but this does not sound like a signal strength issue.

Thanks,
Andreas
+have you tried moving the laptop for the time being closer to the router.

+just to make sure its not a computer problem plug an ethernet cable into the lan port on the router and then into the ethernet port on the Ti and see if that works fine.
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Andreas
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Originally Posted by .emo.
+have you tried moving the laptop for the time being closer to the router.

+just to make sure its not a computer problem plug an ethernet cable into the lan port on the router and then into the ethernet port on the Ti and see if that works fine.

Emo,

Thanks for the reply. Yeah I have tried both of these options, and it works fine either way. This behavior only occurs when I am relatively far away, but the signal strength is still at 50-60%. I could see it happening if the signal was down to 10-20-30%, but the fact that it is so high, and that the signal is cutting off in a perfect square wave is wierd.

Andreas
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GLJones

 
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Sounds like interference to me. Do you have a cordless phone or anything on the same frequencies close by? (Another Wireless Lan?)

Cordless phones will often send a "Ping" to the handset on a regular schedule (every 30-90 seconds) to make sure it's still in range. Perhaps it's a short enough "Ping" that during normal network usage, you don't notice it intefearing with the network. During a constant stream of data (like your large download) the inteference knocks the wi-fi out for a second and then it has to reestablish the connection. VERY noticable when a file is streaming rapidly, then nothing.

This is the only reason for the perfect "square wave" type dropout you describe short of a hardware failure.

Jerry
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StarManta
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Are the cards Airport or Airport Extreme cards? If they're what was included, the TiBook should have Airport and the AlBook an AE. I think AE supports "interference robustness" or something to that effect which may be affecting it.
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Andreas
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Are the cards Airport or Airport Extreme cards? If they're what was included, the TiBook should have Airport and the AlBook an AE. I think AE supports "interference robustness" or something to that effect which may be affecting it.


The interference theory sounds very reasonable, however we dont have any 2.4 Ghz phones, so i am not sure what would be interfering. The Ti does indeed have a regular airport, but I am still wondering what could be causing the interference. Also, this is only occuring when I am very far from the router.

Andreas
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StarManta
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It might be interfering with itself..... maybe....

IMO it looks like the different is between the AP and AE cards.... just for fun you should switch them and see what happens.
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