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Mac mini (2.4 core 2 duo, 10.6.8) has served well for years. Now it seems to be having wifi connectivity problems with no rhyme or reason to their appearance. Several other devices (laptops, phones) on the same wifi network can all connect and use the network with no issues. Sometimes connectivity is dropped altogether and later re-establishes. More often it just becomes impossibly slow:

64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=292 ttl=64 time=2.807 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=293 ttl=64 time=3.668 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=294 ttl=64 time=3.047 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=295 ttl=64 time=2.845 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=296 ttl=64 time=452.096 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=297 ttl=64 time=204.045 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=298 ttl=64 time=496.942 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=299 ttl=64 time=534.443 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=300 ttl=64 time=74.985 ms
Request timeout for icmp_seq 301
Request timeout for icmp_seq 302
Request timeout for icmp_seq 303
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=302 ttl=64 time=2390.534 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=303 ttl=64 time=1390.854 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=304 ttl=64 time=393.798 ms
64 bytes from 10.0.1.1: icmp_seq=306 ttl=64 time=21.682 ms

Above, 10.0.1.1 is our router. From another device, during the same time window, I see much more consistent ping times.

I tried to log all the wifi activity (sudo ./airportd debug +AllUserland +AllDriver +AllVendor; sudo ./airportd logger), and during the outage above there were no log messages seen. Wifi was "connected" but no data was flowing. The other issues (when the connection drops completely) I have not yet reproduced while debug logging.

Is there some other way I can investigate this problem, or should I just give up, assume the interface is dying, and buy a USB wifi dongle?

  • Could you also publish the Console log during the outage. – Ruskes Apr 30 '14 at 12:53
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Sometimes that is caused by WiFi Chanel overcrowding.

Try changing the WiFi channel for Mac Mini.

  • I will try this and report back with results – Zac Thompson May 2 '14 at 19:24

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