flaky connectivity and phantom wifi devices

I've noticed that when the MiFi flakes out on me, it also gets in a state where it _thinks_ that another wifi device has connected, even though it's just my laptop (which doesn't indicate losing connectivity) and if I wait, I'll just see all 5 dots on the mifi readout eventually (30-60 seconds per extra dot) and never get access anymore (the landing page even stops working at that point).

Maybe there's a known behavior/problem that causes that to happen and the extra wifi device dots are something to keep track of when the device's network connectivity stops working.

Comments

  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    The five dots are five devices connecting to the MiFi, are you sure you only use the laptop to connect to MiFi? Because your wireless network card can only connect one time to one device. But on the other hand router can connect to five devises. You seem to have what is call "routing loop".
    1: Try shut down MiFi and take the battery out. Put the battery back in and try see if that solve the problem.

    2: Do a hart reset of the MiFi, this will bring everything back to default setting, including password.

    This does not work, then it may be a incorrect manual configuration of your Wifi or network setting on laptop or bad wireless network card.
    Email: itbr[email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Ali Ali Posts: 6,705FreedomPop Master, Test Role, iOS Master ✭✭✭✭✭
    That seems odd, I didnt put that in the common bugs and issues thread.

    Remove the battery cover and insert a paper clip into the RESET hole which should be on the side under the power button, then as it boots back up you will have to re configure it.

    Also, you may want to change the Maximum connected devices setting to 1 if you only use it with one device at a time.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭

    I've noticed that when the MiFi flakes out on me, it also gets in a state where it _thinks_ that another wifi device has connected, even though it's just my laptop (which doesn't indicate losing connectivity) and if I wait, I'll just see all 5 dots on the mifi readout eventually (30-60 seconds per extra dot) and never get access anymore (the landing page even stops working at that point).

    Maybe there's a known behavior/problem that causes that to happen and the extra wifi device dots are something to keep track of when the device's network connectivity stops working.

    Also check you MiFi and your laptop if it has the same Subnet Mask, other wise if they are difference, your router will think you have two or more routers within a network and try to send out signal to router that do not exist.
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    It isn't other devices connecting - I only have my laptop with me when this is happening, and pretty sure my password isn't that easy to guess.

    I've already done a hard reset. I'll try taking the battery out, but I think this is a bug in the device - maybe it could have something to do with my laptop running linux so I'll have to try with other devices at some point.
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    I've done a hard reset already. I may try the max devices setting to see if it helps... though it might just cause my connection to fail at the point where it otherwise starts piling up new connections (ie, the same effect anyway).
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    @Eric, go into your network on your linux system and give my your
    IP
    Subnet Mask (it should like this "255.255.255.0")
    Default Gateway (on Linux it might be call "Router IP")
    DNS IP

    Then I need then I need you to give me infor for the same information on your MiFi;
    Subnet Mask (255.255.255.0)
    IP
    DNS
    This is in your WiFI section under status in your drop down.

    Note: your router IP, Subnet and DNS should match your network information on the laptop. Also your DHCP should be enable on your network settings.

    (((( send this information to me by PM me, click on my picture and on my profile page in the upper right corner, click message. Do not post them here )))
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    I'll send it to you, but the data does match, as expected and DHCP is being used.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2014 #9
    I have not received the PM you send, If these number do not match, you have a problem in your laptop network settings. Also I need to see everything you see on your laptop and the only where that can be done is by shaning your screen on Skype, are you willing to add me to your contact list in Skype?

    My Skype handle is freewill95 and type freedompop user.
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Albert LeeAlbert Lee Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    This is a previously reported problem with the device which I've also seen and described here:
    https://forums.freedompop.com/discussion/2173/overdrive-pro-vs-mifi-4082-suggestions
    The MiFi repeatedly disconnects a single client and eventually stops responding to DHCP requests after it hits the client limit of 5. This happens more often in a moving vehicle, which suggests the 3G/4G connection changes are involved.

    The incorrect client count shown by the dots is an indicator. Interestingly, when the problem occurs, the client list on http://mifi.mlp does not show multiple entries even when there are multiple dots.

    A workaround is to disable encryption for the wireless network (using open mode rather than WPA2).

    MiFi doesn't seem to always time out the "phantom" clients and thus the automatic shutdown feature doesn't work, which forces me to have to manually switch on/off the one in my car.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭

    This is a previously reported problem with the device which I've also seen and described here:
    https://forums.freedompop.com/discussion/2173/overdrive-pro-vs-mifi-4082-suggestions
    The MiFi repeatedly disconnects a single client and eventually stops responding to DHCP requests after it hits the client limit of 5. This happens more often in a moving vehicle, which suggests the 3G/4G connection changes are involved.

    The incorrect client count shown by the dots is an indicator. Interestingly, when the problem occurs, the client list on http://mifi.mlp does not show multiple entries even when there are multiple dots.

    A workaround is to disable encryption for the wireless network (using open mode rather than WPA2).

    MiFi doesn't seem to always time out the "phantom" clients and thus the automatic shutdown feature doesn't work, which forces me to have to manually switch on/off the one in my car.

    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    @Albert Lee‌ ,if you use open mode in your MiFi or else where, there will be security issue that cause many problem in the device that connect to the MiFi.
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    OK, I guess I didn't search hard enough to find that this is a known behavior/problem... funny that the last word in the original thread from FP (Taylor) is:

    "We generally recommend using the default settings on the device that are set when you receive it. When things are changed in the settings it makes it much harder for us to troubleshoot the issues."

    So the suggestion is that you should leave the wifi settings open which would mean anyone could connect to your device and eat through your allotted data. No thanks.

    Also annoying to hear that this affects the MiFi 4082 and not the overdrive pro, which I'd originally ordered in April and got switched to a MiFi 4082 w/o asking because it was clear that they didn't have any/enough overdrive pros to send.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Yes , that is correct when @Taylor makes the comment that when you change the setting on the MiFI, it would be harder to troubleshoot. This is the same case with what you are connected to as well. In my CompTIA Network+ the type of problem you have one of two problems, router loop (@Albert Lee have give above) or wrong subnet mask (example: MiFi has 255.255.255.0 and your laptop has 255.255.254.0)

    Here information about router loop;
    omnisecu.com/cisco-certified-network-associate-ccna/what-is-routing-loop-and-how-to-avoid-routing-loop.php

    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2014 #15
    cont. >>>>>>
    About the wrong subnet, when you have let say subnet on laptop of 255.255.254.0 and on your MiFi it has 255.255.255.0. The MiFi think it connected to more then one network. Meaning network 255.255.254.0 and the other network 255.255.255.0. The MiFi router think it need to connect to all the networks. But you have only one. This what it showing the five dots on your MiFi. What cause this to happy, to ways.
    1: the config the laptop a static IP and subnet (config it wrong) and your router is using DHCP.

    or

    2: Your DHCP server has become corrupt and giving your laptop the wrong network setting (default gateway, subnet & dns).
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    The ip and subnet mask configured on the linux laptop are being set by the DHCP server on the MiFi device... and they are both getting set to 255.255.255.0.

    Next time I see the problem I'll check the subnet mask to see if it's changed - but that would still be a MiFi problem because the laptop is using DHCP from the MiFi.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    I do not know if this work but go ahead and check for updates on your firmware on MiFi. We know if that solve the problem or not. Do you have any other router working on your network and how it is connected? You can check all your devices, because all these device has IP, subnet and dns.
    Email: [email protected]
    [email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    No I don't have any other router on my network. This is when I'm using a laptop and the MiFi to get connected to the internet. No other devices/routers.

    Firmware is up to date, according to the MiFi (2.1.56).
  • bratidianabratidiana Posts: 0FreedomPop Newbie
    Hi, I've started having the same problem (flaky connectivity and phantom wifi devices) with my Mifi on the 4th of July weekend.
    So, no solution yet?
  • Eric HagbergEric Hagberg Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie
    Apparently "don't use while moving" or "set no security on the wifi login" are the workarounds for now... Neither of which works for me, so I'll just have to resort to rebooting the MiFi when it happens.
  • Albert LeeAlbert Lee Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie

    Yes , that is correct when @Taylor makes the comment that when you change the setting on the MiFI, it would be harder to troubleshoot. This is the same case with what you are connected to as well. In my CompTIA Network+ the type of problem you have one of two problems, router loop (@Albert Lee have give above) or wrong subnet mask (example: MiFi has 255.255.255.0 and your laptop has 255.255.254.0)

    Here information about router loop;
    omnisecu.com/cisco-certified-network-associate-ccna/what-is-routing-loop-and-how-to-avoid-routing-loop.php

    Brian, those are just examples of network problems described in a certification test and they are not even common nor relevant here. The problem here is the access point drops connectivity and the DHCP server stops responding.
  • Brian McPhersonBrian McPherson Posts: 1,365FreedomPop Newbie, FreedomPop Master, FreedomPop Expert ✭✭✭✭
    How you know it nor relevant, the examples are wifi related if that the cause. You only seeing the problem, it does not show the cause. You got find and try the causes to rule them out when you try them. Then you know if this is the case. That the way to troubleshoot a problem. To rule out a answer is a good way for not even fixing your problem.
    Email: [email protected]
    itbrianmc[email protected]

    For better help in real time, "Skype" is the best help I can offer. My Skype User is "freewill95". You can add me to your contact list and in the message box, type "freedompop user".
  • Albert LeeAlbert Lee Posts: 2FreedomPop Newbie

    How you know it nor relevant, the examples are wifi related if that the cause. You only seeing the problem, it does not show the cause. You got find and try the causes to rule them out when you try them. Then you know if this is the case. That the way to troubleshoot a problem. To rule out a answer is a good way for not even fixing your problem.

    Routing loops and subnet configuration problems only affect routing of IP traffic. IP routing is responsible for directing IP traffic to the correct destination and happens after an IP network has been established.

    As you may recall from your education, network architectures can typically be separated into a physical layer, link layer, and network layer, or what the OSI model calls levels 1, 2, and 3. In WiFi, the physical layer is the radio, the link layer is the Ethernet MAC, and the network layer is IP. In other words, when sending IP traffic, IP packets are stuffed into Ethernet frames, and transmission happens using radio hardware.

    When the WiFi network disconnects, that is an event at the link layer. When the client reconnects to the network, it establishes link-layer communication again, but it requires DHCP to configure IP. It is not receiving a DHCP response. A static IP configuration would be a possible workaround if it were just a DHCP server problem and the link is working fine, but it appears all traffic from the client is being dropped at this point. This is probably related to the mechanism used to enforce the client limit.
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