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Journal of nicholas (3034)

Saturday October 14, 2006
07:27 AM

MacBook wireless flakiness

[ #31317 ]

I'm having intermittent issues with this MacBook's wireless. Every so often it doesn't want to recognise my wireless network. This seems to happen immediately after waking from sleep - the network connection doesn't drop out once it's established. I think it may have happened once after a reboot, but I'm not certain. I don't think that the basestation is at fault, as it's worked quite happily with various Powerbooks and a Dell brick, using the same configuration.

The symtoms manifest as the network not being detected, or it being detected but a dialogue pops up reporting an error in connecting, "try again" or "OK", or today the airport icon flickered repeatedly between black (connected) and grey (not). All this is accompanied by errors in system.log such as:

Identity added: /Users/nick/.ssh/id_dsa (/Users/nick/.ssh/id_dsa)
Oct 14 08:46:51 SZUKNCLARK mDNSResponder: Repeated transitions for interface lo0 (127.0.0.1); delaying packets by 5 seconds
Oct 14 08:47:36 SZUKNCLARK mDNSResponder: Repeated transitions for interface en1 (FE80:0000:0000:0000:0216:CBFF:FEBD:8009); delaying packets by 5 seconds
Oct 14 08:47:40 SZUKNCLARK mDNSResponder: Repeated transitions for interface en1 (169.254.56.31); delaying packets by 5 seconds
Oct 14 08:48:39 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: WirelessAssociate2() = 88001006 for network on the road to nowhere
Oct 14 08:48:39 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: (had password)
Oct 14 08:48:47 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: WirelessAssociate2() = 88001006 for network on the road to nowhere
Oct 14 08:48:47 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: (had password)
Oct 14 08:48:55 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: WirelessAssociate2() = 88001012 for network on the road to nowhere
Oct 14 08:48:55 SZUKNCLARK /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Resources/airport: Error: (had password)
Oct 14 08:49:21 SZUKNCLARK mDNSResponder: Repeated transitions for interface en1 (FE80:0000:0000:0000:0216:CBFF:FEBD:8009); delaying packets by 5 seconds
All identities removed.

The password is perfectly fine, and once the system stops being obdurate it will connect without me having to retype it. So it's nothing to do with configuration getting lost. Google^WSearching for the text doesn't throw up any answers. What's going on?

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  • I have the same experience with the macbook pro - since the latest point release update of mac os x 10.4.
  • This sounds similar to issues i had with my Powerbook a few years ago, and it turned out to be a bad antenna connection. The apple techs were no help because the problem was so flakey and hard to reproduce. I ended up having to diagnose it myself using an older Powerbook and the Airport Utilities (sorry I can't seem to find a link right now). Basically I had to prove to the Apple tech that two powerbooks side by side did not consistently have the same signal strength, and he agreed to take it in, and sure

  • ... but i've had some issues with Apple & Wireless networks too.. try connecting to your basestation without encryption; I dont remember the details of what I ran into, but after a lot of googling, that was the suggestion that people made, and it fixed my problem.

    If it fixes yours too, you can *then* take the time and find out what problem you actually worked around ;)
  • I've run into this problem myself and it was due to a cordless phone. We solved it by messing with the channels used by the wireless Internet and the cordless phone. Unfortunately, if it isn't your phone, some neighbor's may be the culprit.

    • My landline phone is definately cordful, so if there is a problem, it's not mine to solve. Curiously the network connection can also fail if I start KisMAC to scan to see which channels are free. Which makes me suspicious that it's hateful software (or hardware) on the MacBook.

    • I have been having exactly the same problem with my MacBook Pro. If I start a new wireless network on my netgear router by using the ethernet cable then the MacBook did at one point pick it up again. If I do not do this then I get a message telling me that there was an error joining the network. I have also just tried deleting all the surplus locations listed in the airport plist to see if that makes a difference. What does "messing with the channels used by the cordless phone" mean. I do have a cordles
  • I'm struggling with this on my new MacBook, too. I'm searching for more information, but it looks like this is a relatively common problem with little information on a resolution. Did you ever get this solved?