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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out Internet
If you search the Apple Discussion boards you will see a lot of discussions like this one -- they're all about Airport and Ethernet internet connections dropping. I think I have figured out a solution to the problem (I use 10.5.3), as I was having it as well.

With certain routers, OS X will choose to use the address of the router as the DNS server's IP address. Therefore, it will first try and contact the router to get DNS info, and only after a while will it find it's way to the net. I had a new MacBook Pro with this issue, as well as a new iMac. The latter fortunately showed the wrong DNS server IP (grey fonts), but the Macbook didn't.

The solution is to go in the Network System Preferences panel and select 'Manually' instead of 'Using DCHP'. Then fill in the IP address, subnet mask, router address, and DNS server address. Click 'Advanced' and then go to the 'DNS' tab to verify whether the correct DNS IP has been entered, or to enter multiple DNS IP addresses. While in the Advanced section, make sure that under the 'TCP/IP' tab, 'Configure Ipv4' is set to 'Manually,' and 'Configure IPv6' is set to 'off.'

This should do the trick for most people. So remember, if one has a dropping internet connection and no DNS server IP has been entered, the OS may be trying to contact the router rather than the DNS server of the ISP. Therefore, the correct DNS IP addresses need to be filled in.

[robg adds: I haven't experienced this myself, but generally use static IP addressing all the time. If there are other theories on the problem/solution, please post them.]
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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: frantz on Jul 02, '08 08:27:04AM

IMHO this is a poor hint because even if you use DHCP you can specify DNS servers.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: Alnitak on Jul 02, '08 09:29:22AM
the OS may be trying to contact the router rather than the DNS server of the ISP.

It's the DHCP response from the router is what tells the OS what to use. Until that response is received the Mac will actually have no DNS settings and any DNS lookups will fail. Also, if you override the DHCP settings with static addresses then you'll need to change those settings any time you connect via a different network.

In most cases the address given will be its own address, and the router will contain a DNS proxy which forwards the requests to the ISPs upstream DNS servers.

nb: most routers don't proxy DNS over TCP, they only to UDP. This means that extra large DNS responses which get truncated can't be returned.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: gshurley on Jul 02, '08 09:49:54AM

I have been having this problem on my Mac Pro for a few weeks. I am also connected via wired connection on this one computer. After updating to 10.5.4 and the firmware on my Airport Extreme, I was hoping the issue would be resolved. It was not, so I decided this workaround was at least worth a try. It did not work for me :( The problem is definitely the Airport router - I connected directly from my Mac Pro to the cable modem a couple of days ago for a few hours and experienced no connection drops. I also reset the router, which did not fix the problem. I am getting ready to just buy another router since the firmware update released this week did not address this issue and the connection drops are becoming problematic.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: mannyveloso on Jul 02, '08 10:05:40AM

The first thing to determine when you're getting connection drop is if the problem is a problem with your wireless connection or with the wall connection.

Since you've got an AEBS and a Mac Pro, try setting your network to 802.11n in the 5ghz spectrum (click the option key when you select the network type). All kinds of weird things can disrupt 2.4ghz signals, including such innocuous things like dehumidifiers.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: elliotbay on Jul 02, '08 10:24:56AM

I wouldn't go buying a new router just yet. I have a similar problem, and I'm running a linksys router with dd-wrt firmware, and the two macs that use it have the same problem. Ironically, when I boot my Macbook in Windows mode, there's never an issue.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: paroparo on Jul 02, '08 10:18:07AM

There is another setting, that may be causing this behaivor, namely MTU. I noticed a lot of drops when the MTU was set to 1500 and I was using the router from my ISP. Setting it a bit lower on the MacBook did the trick (1460 was the max for my setup).



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: elliotbay on Jul 02, '08 10:30:50AM

The logic doesn't make sense to me, but if Rob doesn't have the problem and uses static DHCP, it might be worth a shot. The weird part for me about that problem is that when my computer is booted in Windows mode, it's fine.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: Auricchio on Jul 02, '08 01:15:09PM

Using static IP or DHCP has nothing to do with this.

- The ISP provides DNS addresses to the router, assuming the usual dynamic-IP ISP connection. (If you buy a static-IP connection, you're told what DNS addresses to configure into the router.)

- If the computer uses DHCP, the router passes those DNS addresses to the computer.

- If the computer uses static IP, the computer can simply forward all lookups to the router/gateway address. If you've entered some DNS addresses, the computer uses them.

---
EMOJO: mojo no longer workin'



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: mayonaize on Jul 02, '08 11:05:30AM

This certainly sounds like the trouble I'm having at my girlfriend's place. She can connect without hassle to her wireless network on her Vista laptop, but my MacBook just won't load any webpages (but has great connection bars and the WEP is correct etc.).

Under the DNS bit the only numbers listed are the address of the router AND it is greyed out.

I am beyond frustrated with it. I guess I will try this when I'm next round.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: Auricchio on Jul 02, '08 01:09:34PM

It sounds like the issue is inside the router. Either it's not receiving DNS info from the ISP, or its firmware is wrong.

I have seen that Earthlink DNS (at least in my area) isn't providing DNS addresses to the router. As a result, the router doesn't work properly. I either enter DNS addresses into the router or the computer(s).

Why not simply use standard DHCP and enter opendns.org addresses in the network settings? This works perfectly all the time. Those DNS servers are 208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220.

---
EMOJO: mojo no longer workin'



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Using opendns
Authored by: dan55304 on Jul 03, '08 06:38:47AM

I switched to manually using these DNS servers a long time ago because of connection issues and huge delays accessing various web sites. It's worked great for me.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: Hunted Charlie on Jul 02, '08 01:19:34PM
If you're going to be changing location (or even if you're not) try using the OpenDNS servers. You can go here to find their tutorials on enabling it at any level on your network. You'll have to create an account to use most of their extra features, but the basic bit is as easy as adding their DNS servers to your Mac's list:

208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220

That's it. Their servers are faster, more regularly updated, and can perform (at your choice) extra functions like blocking of badware/phishing domains, content control, domain name correction, or DNS shortcuts.

This also makes it a lot easier when you're changing locations because you can leave your DNS servers the same and you never have to worry about changes.

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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: vocaro on Jul 02, '08 06:09:33PM

Typo: "find it's way" --> "find its way"



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: jfunkk79 on Jul 03, '08 10:04:34AM

I've been using an AEBS g basestation for a while now and only started having these problems when Leopard was released. I have roommates that are on Windows and Tiger and also have a Tiger machine myself and the only time I have this problem are using my Air or my work Macbook Pro, both on Leopard.

Wireless networking in Leopard has been nothing but trouble. I've tried many different configurations on my router, even though I know it's not the router, and I've yet to come up with a viable solution. If I could downgrade my Air to Tiger I would.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: zo219 on Jul 04, '08 03:54:40PM

Possible fixes:

Set your Renew DHCP Lease to either very frequent (that once helped my connection stay alive) ... or very infrequently.

Input OpenDNS servers in Network panel ...

AppleTalk gets turned on with some archive & installs / upgrades; make sure that's turned off. Check your other network settings too, just in case proxy's on by mistake.

MacPilot by Koingo has a number of options for presets, depending on your connection, that it will temporarily or permanently apply. Must be fifty for cable modem - not fair to them to copy here, of course, but you might want to take a look.

This isn't a keychain issue, is it? They can be stubborn - worth deleting relevant entries and starting fresh by letting the system ask you, Remember this in Keychain? Which is sometimes the only reliable way.

And keep resetting that ABS - I've got an Airport Express that can take 4 or 5 resets after a system upgrade now, but once it remembers, no drop outs.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: pdotoole on Jul 03, '08 11:10:36PM

My wife gets this problem on her Black Macbook (2.0GHz Core Duo). The AirPort signal indicator will very briefly drop and then come back. This ONLY happens when the MB is NOT connected to the mains power. When it is connected to the mains power there are no signal drop outs. Tried just about everything I can think of but can't fix it. I think it's a hardware issue because of the difference when using the power adaptor. These are the steps i've tried:

Boot from my MBP using target disk mode and FW cable, still the same - this rules out any software error
Re-set PRAM, PMU

I'm using a Netgear router provided by my ISP, haven't tried another yet.

Anyone have any other ideas? I guess last resort is pay for someone to service it.



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: frantz on Jul 04, '08 12:58:10AM

I'm still having those dropouts with Ethernet connexion to my ISP's box with router mode enabled.

I've tried DHCP, DHCP with specific DNS (OpenDNS and others public DNS), Static IP, change MTU to 1450... Nothing works !

The only way to instant recover connexion is to unplug Ethernet and plug it back. VERY annoying !!!



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: frudov on Jul 06, '08 12:40:26PM

Here's how things are for me:

1. Since leopard I used to only have problems initially getting on the wireless network from sleep, but now it's started dropping out randomly in the middle of usage after 10.5.3-10.5.4 on my MBP.

2. In the Network Diagnostics tool, more often than not it's stuck at the ISP green light; the Internet and Server lights are both red. When I get to selecting the airport network I want to join, often (but not always) it asks me to put in a password for the network, even though I don't have it secured (used to, that didn't help, either!). Eventually by turning Airport on and off, it starts working again.

3. I don't see why it's the router. I've been having endless problems since Leopard with a linksys router that had been working perfectly before, and works fine now for some computers (but not mine).

3. I'd been using the Open DNS servers before Leopard, that sure doesn't seem to be helping.

4. I'm not sure what MTU is--where is that in the network prefs, or is it in the router?


Thanks!



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query on: One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: im9972 on Jul 28, '08 04:22:44PM

here's a mystery - 3 MacBooks sharing a connection with latest APX 'n' series.

Internet runs sweet as for eMac via ethernet cable and MacBook #1 via Airport - but as soon as another MBook connects, MB #1 loses connection - as will MB #3 if it comes on.

meantime MB #1 and eMac surf away happily - only solution for the other 2 MBooks is to connect via an ethernet cable.

this has only occurred since upgrading APX from 'g' to 'n'

there is one particular MacBook that seems to have precedence over the others - could it be in its settings??

any clues???



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One possible fix for internet connections that drop out
Authored by: binarybear on Feb 09, '09 10:09:26AM

I just reported this problem the Apple and their fix was to change the channel selection of the Airport from Automatic to a number. They told me to set mine to 9 but I think that should be a random number.

---
Binary Bear



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