Readers question: Mac keeps losing WiFi connection

WLAN connection interruptions due to the 2,4 GHz radio network

My reader Monika emailed me a while ago because her MacBook Air from 2015 keeps losing the WiFi connection. The usual approaches like Start in recovery mode, Start in safe mode and also SMC reset have already been tried. Here is your question in detail:

Hello sir, my Mac Air 2015 keeps losing the internet, tried several handles and the Apple help was there too. Are there still a few shortcut keys? So far it was always done with deleting the WLAN and resetting [...].

My Mac from 2016 is the finest thing I've ever come across from Apple. I had the keyboard done by Apple, everything was so great. I'm in love with him. No internet or wifi problems. Incidentally, all Apple devices are in one room. I need the 2015 Mac for the rough.

 

It is not uncommon for WLAN problems and disconnections to be related to the frequency band in which the router works (photos: Sir Apfelot).

It is not uncommon for WLAN problems and disconnections to be related to the frequency band in which the router works (photos: Sir Apfelot).

Root cause research and solution approach

Of course, regularly deleting the WLAN settings cannot be the solution. The fact that the other Mac has no problems with the WiFi connection initially led me on the wrong track, because I thought it must be the 2015 MacBook Air.

In fact, there is a cause for the problem with the Internet connection that I would not have thought of if a reader had not told me about it in another post. The other post is actually about Solution approaches for Bluetooth problems, but his tip actually helped with the WiFi problems here as well.

In residential areas where there are many third-party WLAN routers, it may be worth taking a look at the radio channel assignment. If there is too much interference, it also creates connection problems.

In residential areas where there are many third-party WLAN routers, it may be worth taking a look at the radio channel assignment. If there is too much interference, it also creates connection problems.

Set the frequency band to 2,4 GHz

The cause of disconnections on Macs is often related to the fact that there are incompatibilities between the transmission standards of the router and the Mac. In this case it was due to the 2,4 GHz wireless network that somehow couldn't work properly with the Mac.

Perhaps it was only possible when the router was comfortable switching to 5 GHz. As soon as it reached the 2,4 GHz frequency band, however, the problems were triggered.

My proposed solution of checking the router to see whether the frequency band can be set to 2,4 GHz or 5 GHz ultimately led to success. Monika completely deactivated the 2,4 GHz band and the WLAN interruptions were fixed:

Dear Sir Jens, I'm Monika again, with my Apple fetishism.
Your suggestion was great, I switched off the 2,4 GHz in the speed port and immediately had no more WiFi loss on my Mac Air 2015.

Unfortunately (or fortunately) I don't have a speed port in use with me, but in my Fritz! Box you can find the option to deactivate the wireless networks under Fritz! Box-Admin> WLAN> Radio network> Active frequency bands. Here is the appropriate screenshot:

The screenshot shows where the wireless networks can be individually deactivated or activated in the Fritz! Box settings. First of all, both frequency bands are activated by the manufacturer.

The screenshot shows where the wireless networks can be individually deactivated or activated in the Fritz! Box settings. Both frequency bands are initially activated by the manufacturer.

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21 comments

  1. Froyo52 says:

    But none of this helps if several devices with different frequencies have to access the W-LAN in a household.

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Yes, if that is not possible, there is still the option (depending on the router) to give the 2,4 GHz network a different name than the 5 GHz network. Then you can "forbid" one Mac to use the 2,4 GHz and the world should be fine again.

  2. Raffae says:

    At this point I would also check whether the user is using a USB-C hub. They like to interfere with Bluetooth and WLAN, so the USB-C hub cables are often very short.
    The deactivation of 2,4GHz only works until you have to cover longer distances or bridge walls.
    The channel item is also interesting:
    Technically something like this is explained here https://www.elektronik-kompendium.de/sites/net/1712061.htm
    There are 3 non-overlapping channels: 1,5,7
    The Fritz boxes also offer the possibility to choose the channel automatically

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Raffae! Thanks for your additions. It is of course always "tinkering" and not optimal if you do not use both frequency bands automatically. But the tips might help in an emergency.

  3. Chartie says:

    I am connected to my 2018 MB Pro with a Fritzbox over the 5 GHz. The 5 Ghz has its own SSID. Router 3000 is also available (mesh).
    Now I have the following problem:
    If the MB "rests" and I then open the cover again, the WLAN is restored, but it is sometimes extremely slow or hangs.
    The only remedy is to disconnect and re-establish the connection via the menu bar.
    Does anyone know or a solution?

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Chartie! I once had a problem with a Fritz! Repeater. There seem to be rare problems between Apple products and AVM Fritz products. My solution back then was to retire the repeater and create a mesh network with Google Wifi points. It has worked to this day. What does the Router 3000 do for you? Why don't you connect the MacBook Pro to the mesh network? That should usually be the better choice if it already exists.

  4. Chartie says:

    Hi,
    sorry, I made a mistake. The "Router 3000" is of course a "Fritz! Repeater 3000" ????
    I had already read about it.
    Have you attached the Google "Wifi Points" to the Fritz! Box or another router? On Amazon I can only find "Google WiFi - WLAN router".

    The repeater 3000 is in the Fritz! Mesh and there is usually the Macbook attached to it, which is causing the problems. With Sonos, I also keep dropping out. According to Sonos, this is also due to Fritz!

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Chartie! I attached the Google Wifi devices (one of them) directly to my Fritz! Box using an Ethernet cable. Deactivated the WLAN of the Fritz! Box and then distributed a few more of the Google Wifi devices in the house. That works very well. You find those things here at Amazon (pack of 3) or cheap used now and then on eBay. Since Google released the hardware update for the devices in 2019 (Google Nest Wifi), many people are selling the Google Wifi devices cheaply. I find my old version very practical, because each of these devices also has a LAN port from which you can take the network and a LAN port to connect the point to the Internet. With the new Google Nest Wifi you have to take a set with a router and an access point. The access points no longer have any network connections.

  5. Chartie says:

    Hi Jens,
    Excellent! Thank's for the Tipps. I'll take a closer look at that ...
    Yesterday I found a lot about it. Many swear by amazon Eero or Ubiquity.
    In any case, I need something that is just as easy as Fritz! to be configured.
    How's it going on Google?

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Chartie! Sorry for the late reply. :( Well I had Ubiquity once and it should also have a great range and 1000 possibilities for configuration, but that was somehow too complex. It took me forever to understand how to get into the admin area I haven't had Eero yet, but Google Wifi is super-simple and extremely easy to use. And it also has - if you need it - good features, such as automatic speed tests with messages if something is wrong. You can also Prioritize devices, which is very helpful if you have to work in the same network that the kids are watching YouTube in. AND: You can turn off the kids' internet according to a schedule, which is also not bad. I can only recommend the Google stuff ... you By the way, gets it cheap via the Tink shop.

  6. Chartie says:

    So, yesterday I finally made up my mind: It will be the EERO Pro - should come today.
    There are hardly any more yours. At Amazon, the delivery date is 06.11/XNUMX. ????
    I originally set my sights on Nest. But 1. I hate built-in microphones and 2. the AP has no LAN sockets. Since I have thick reinforced concrete ceilings, that's what I wanted. EERO will then automatically recognize whether it should connect via LAN ...
    I'm curious. Should i report?

    Alternatively, I have to ask Tink whether it would also be possible to couple 2 wireless routers.

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Chartie! In any case, I would be interested in how the EEROs work. My Google Wifi APs are nice, but I need quite a few for our house. Since I have few sockets, it doesn't get along so well. Maybe EERO is the better choice. LG

  7. Chris King says:

    A short report on my part: The built-in WiFi does not work on my MacMini 2014 with 10.15.7. I was then able to successfully get a TP-Link T2U nano to work on a FB 7362L with the usual recommended settings, i.e. changed DNS server (8.8.8.8/8.8.8.4), IPv4 instead of IPv6 and MTU 1453. Until then, I always had to record dropouts again. After I had switched everything on permanently in the energy options for the sake of fun, the WiFi is stable in the configuration and only mucks in the first few minutes after the restart.

    • Jens Kleinholz says:

      Hello Chris! Thank you for the notification. That is interesting. At times I have badly bad network, but I don't know whether it is due to the WLAN, router or the provider. But I'll test that with the energy options. Would be great if that would help. What is the DNS 8.8.8.8 for and why IPv4 instead of IPv6?

  8. Chris King says:

    Hi, Jens, the tip with the changed DNS entries can be read on several pages. Unfortunately, I have lost track of everything, so I may submit the source later. IPv4 was just a test balloon and maybe unnecessary.
    Update after yesterday: I then set up the Mini one floor lower, there is a second FB and nothing worked again - as before lame, internal wifi nil, external wifi stick zero etc ... I'll keep you up to date ...

  9. Chris King says:

    To make you crazy: Since this morning it's been up AND down. With internal WiFi! Settings: Now everything is set to standard, power management off, back to IPv6 + hardware: MTU = 1400 - running ...-frown- ...

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