View Full Version : MacBook refusing to play nicely with wireless network

1st July 2009, 06:28 PM
So my 2.2Ghz C2D Macbook (bought February 2008) has decided to hate our wireless network. Over the last 2 days, it's been sporadically refusing to recognise the network it's been connected to since I bought it, or if it does recognise it, it refuses to actually send data through (I'm looking at iStat Menus for network stats). I've tried pinging my ISP and Google via Terminal, but it didn't do anything. I'm running the latest version of Leopard with all the latest updates installed.

I've rebooted the Mac multiple times (both restarts and complete shutdowns), I've updated everything that needed updating, and have also restarted the wireless modem/router. Deleting then re-adding the Airport interface via Network Preferences (a very good suggestion that I wasn't aware of, courtesy of Exocet) fixed the problem yesterday, but I haven't been so successful this afternoon. I don't believe it's a problem with the router, as I'm connected to the same network on my iMac G5, iPod touch and another iMac in another room. I've been able to connect and post to Twitter and Mactalk on them while the Macbook's sat there scanning for networks.

The iMac I'm on at the moment is on the same desk as the Macbook, and it has no problems connecting, and as I've said, the Macbook has been able to connect without issue in this same position for a year, so I don't believe it's the location of the machine or the router that is the problem.

Because of the sporadic nature of this problem, I'm a little concerned that it might be the Airport card starting to die, and I haven't purchased APP. No need to yell at me, I know I should have done that back in February. But I didn't. :o So I really hope it isn't that. Although I'd like to use this as an excuse to get a shiny new Macbook Pro, I'm not really in a position at the moment to buy one. So I would prefer this to be a silly little bug.

If anybody could give me any ideas as to what troubleshooting methods I've missed, or what I could try in order to fix this problem, I'd be extremely grateful.:)

1st July 2009, 08:32 PM
I've had sporadic issues with my MBP and wireless. The best remedy I've found to date was to reset the PRAM (sp?) - restarting holding down Option-Command P + R keys until the second tone.

It seems to have sorted out my problems in the last 24 hours.

1st July 2009, 09:25 PM
I'll try that next, thanks!

It's been working OK for a few hours now, but I just know it's lulling me into a false sense of security. Nasty Macbook. :(

2nd July 2009, 02:37 PM
I've done a complete erase + reinstall on the MacBook this afternoon. After everything was set up and I ended up on the desktop, it lost the network. Turning Airport off then back on got it back into action again, and it seems to be downloading the 900MB of updates, but that seemed to me to show this being a hardware rather than software fault. Not good.

2nd July 2009, 02:42 PM
Does it actually drop the connection, or just stop transferring data like mine used to? The status icon would show the MBP connected to the network, and the Belkin Vision would show the MBP connected, but there was nothing coming or going.

Resetting the PRAM settings fixed my problem (at least for the past 48 hours anyway). I also took the battery out and held down the power button for 20 seconds (don't know what good that did but it was recommended) before the reset. Popped the battery back in and reset holding down the Option Command and P and R keys - until the second chime. It always seemed to stop working a little after I would awaken it from sleeping. Now it's all good - touch wood.

2nd July 2009, 02:59 PM
Both, actually. Sometimes it shows there being a connection, but doesn't send any data, it sees the network, but times out attempting to connect, or constantly scans without seeing the network at all.

2nd July 2009, 08:07 PM
arrghh.... I've had to disconnect and reconnect to the wireless network three times tonight. It just periodically stops sending/receiving data... but shows as being connected. grrrrr....

4th July 2009, 06:45 PM
Have you verified that the problem is with the network, not your internet connection? Have you tried pinging other local network objects?

I had a weird problem earlier this year with similar results (however my network was fine, the internet connection was the problem). Telstra sent a technician and the connector outside our house for the cable internet had corroded, causing the modem to fail to send or receive.

Clearly if you've got other computers that are working well on the network at the same time you can rule out internet connection problems. If you don't have another computer you can test your internet connection by plugging directly into your modem/router.

4th July 2009, 06:58 PM
Yeah, as I mentioned in my OP, I've two iMacs and an iPod all connected to the network and working perfectly fine.

I've not had any problems with the Macbook's connection today as yet, so I'm hoping that it was just having a fit the last few days and has now settled down again. No certainties though!

22nd August 2009, 06:15 PM
Yep same problem here. Recently bought a N1 Vision and when its connected via WPA the connection is stable (but wireless G), when I connect it via WPA2 it connects on Wireless N (which is preferred clearly) but will randomly drop out.

the router shows it's connected to the computer and visa versa but no data is being transferred.

This isn't my internet as my housemate's Windows machine connected on G can still surf the net when this happens.

any thoughts?

23rd August 2009, 03:27 PM
Maybe take a look at your router setting, on mine there is an option to only allow specific IP's. If yours has this make sure its unchecked.
If to no avail... Another obvious suggestion would be to get a paperclip and press the router reset button.

Thats all I can think of at this stage. Maybe take it to the place of purchase and inquire if the above does not work.

5th November 2009, 09:22 PM
Has anyone been able to figure out an answer to this? I've just bought a refurbished 13" Unibody MacBook and the wi-fi has been between hopeless to non existant so far.

one second it will be able to see the 6 or so networks in my area then literally 10 seconds later it will see none. If I do manage to get connected to my Router (NetComm NB6Plus4W) the speed will be much slower than my iPhone going through Wi-Fi until it eventually drops out completely.

Only the MacBook is having this problem, I'm on 10.5.8

Any advice would be appreciated

Ken S
5th November 2009, 09:35 PM
Please ignore - didn't read prior post correctly