General Troubleshooting Tips? Intermittent WiFi Drops

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MichaelC
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Joined: 11 Apr 2019
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PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 22:33    Post subject: General Troubleshooting Tips? Intermittent WiFi Drops Reply with quote
I'm not so much looking for help with my specific hardware/configuration, but more general tips about what to look for and where to look.

That said, in case it makes a difference, I'm using a TP-Link AC1900 and DD-WRT v3.0-r42819 std (03/30/20). I have 50-75 devices attached, mostly very low impact ones like smart plugs, Echo Dots, Ring, etc. Some Rokus and other streaming devices, but it happens when nothing is streaming, too.

I've had this problem for quite a while but it's become more frequent, to the point where it now happens numerous times a day. The WiFi will just stop working (not sure about hardwired--almost everything on my network is WiFi) for a few minutes. Then a few minutes later it comes back online. I haven't found anything helpful in /var/log/messages. The load average is always low (under 0.15).

Where else should I look for any indication of what is happening? Is there any additional logging I can enable?

Thanks in advance for any advice!
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kernel-panic69
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 0:21    Post subject: Reply with quote
Most of your IoT devices require G-only and WMM off. But if your device is a Broadcom, that may not work very well as *-only modes are catch-22. You may also wish to consider upgrading to a more recent release, like today's.
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MichaelC
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 2:42    Post subject: Reply with quote
I've updated to today's release, just in case there are bug fixes from the past month or two that address this.

But I'm not just looking for a fix for this problem. I want to know what I should be looking at to figure out what the problem is.

Also, it's not just a problem with the IoT devices. When it cuts out, everything drops. The Dot's don't respond. If the kids are streaming something in the living room, I hear it stop. The WiFi connection drops on my laptop. As near as I can tell, EVERYTHING loses the connection.

I'm running in "Mixed" Wireless Networking Mode and "WMM Enabled". My IoT devices work fine, other than these times when WiFi drops out (for everyone, not just those devices).

Shouldn't there be some clue in a log file or something that would help me figure out what's happening? Or something I can do to diagnose it?
kernel-panic69
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 3:22    Post subject: Reply with quote
Pretty sure you should probably look through your settings...

https://wiki.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Basic_Wireless_Settings

https://wiki.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Advanced_wireless_settings

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MichaelC
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 17:31    Post subject: Reply with quote
I've looked through those settings, and maybe I'm missing something, but it seems like if any of those settings were wrong, some devices would never work. That's not the problem I'm having.

I'm having an intermittent problem where WiFi stops working for a period of time for ALL devices.
kernel-panic69
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 17:58    Post subject: Reply with quote
MichaelC wrote:
I'm running in "Mixed" Wireless Networking Mode and "WMM Enabled". My IoT devices work fine, other than these times when WiFi drops out (for everyone, not just those devices).


This statement seems to indicate you have not adjusted your settings to the recommended settings per the wikis I linked...

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Per Yngve Berg
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 19:42    Post subject: Reply with quote
Have you tried to change channel?
MichaelC
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 4:31    Post subject: Reply with quote
kernel-panic69 wrote:
MichaelC wrote:
I'm running in "Mixed" Wireless Networking Mode and "WMM Enabled". My IoT devices work fine, other than these times when WiFi drops out (for everyone, not just those devices).


This statement seems to indicate you have not adjusted your settings to the recommended settings per the wikis I linked...


"Recommended Setting: NG-Mixed or mixed"

"Recommended Setting:

WMM Support: Enable"

These appear to be both the default and recommended settings.

Are you thinking that one of these settings would cause the WiFi to periodically drop for all clients?

I'm assuming if I switched to NG-Mixed, it would drop any B clients. Is there an easy way to see if I have any that are using 802.11b?

I'll try changing to "NG-Mixed" and "WMM Disabled" to see if that makes a difference.

I also enabled Klogd, which I saw you suggested in a similar thread. (Syslogd was already enabled.)
MichaelC
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 4:36    Post subject: Reply with quote
Per Yngve Berg wrote:
Have you tried to change channel?
I haven't, but I have very little noise. We're in a more rural area.
MichaelC
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Joined: 11 Apr 2019
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 5:32    Post subject: Reply with quote
Well that didn't last long. The changes above made no difference. WiFi is still dropping out regularly.

This time the drop was long enough that I was able to confirm that the one wired desktop in the house was still working, so I'm able to confirm that it's just the WiFi.

I also checked to see which channel was clearest and switched to that channel. It dropped again a little while later. So the channel doesn't matter either.

Looking through /var/log/messages. So far, I don't see anything that might point me in the right direction. With klogd running, the one new thing I'm seeing is some "kern.warn kernel: DROP" records, which I think is just the firewall.
Zyxx
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Joined: 28 Dec 2018
Posts: 261

PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 8:17    Post subject: Reply with quote
A wild guess: An old TP Link of mine (??1043wrd??)
still is in use at my parents house with 20ish devices connected via wireless.
It suffered from dropouts on wireless, too.
Found nothing in logs but some hints in google: malfunctioning /aged mains adaptor.

Since I exchanged it, no problems anymore Smile

As it looks to me, the wifi chipset ceased to function due to power shortage and often needed a device reboot to be usable again.
kernel-panic69
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 10:30    Post subject: Reply with quote
Someone went in and edited the basic wireless settings wiki. I would presume that "mixed" is good for client or client bridge modes only, or may be related to the experimental FOSS drivers in some builds, or for anything BUT Broadcom, but otherwise, THAT IS INCORRECT. I guess that I need to have the site admins pull wiki access for everyone BUT moderators. Stupid ignorant people making stupid edits that muck people up.
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MichaelC
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 12:50    Post subject: Reply with quote
The nice thing about Wikis is that they keep a log of what was changed and by who. It looks like that change was made by a moderator (msoengineer).

My WiFi has been down all night. I changed the settings back to Mixed and WMM Enabled, and it's working again. Whatever the problem is, these settings just seem to make it worse.
kernel-panic69
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 18:32    Post subject: Reply with quote
I didn't have time to mess with that this morning. I will PM him about it.
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msoengineer
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Joined: 21 Jan 2017
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Location: Illinois Moderator

PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2020 3:49    Post subject: Reply with quote
which version of the router do you have, and are you running the right version of the firmware?

I assume this is an Archer C9, but your initial information is incomplete.
Which wifi drops, 2.4 or 5 or both?

If that router has sensors, what temperatures are the cpu and radios reporting?

What build did you notice this issue starting at? have you tried rolling back to some older builds?


This whole topic is crap right now as very little useful info was shared and blaming me swapping NG-Mixed or Mixed from Mixed or NG-mixed is likely not the issue at all.

IMHO, the hardware seems likely culprit and might be overheating or failing.

post some more details and maybe some other specific users can chime it. I don't own this hardware to be able to test and help.

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