I was offline due to an outage with my ISP. I disabled Wi-Fi and connected to my 2016 Macbook Pro running macOS (10.12.4-10.12.5) an iPhone to use its personal hotspot to connect, but when I did, the hotspot did not kick in as it has on past Macs. Instead, in the Network System Preferences, I see this message for
Attached iPhone USB is disabled because another network is connected. Uncheck the box below to connect anyway [✓] Disable unless needed
If I uncheck the box, the interface changes to Connected, but I want the device to only be active when needed. The mac seems to be incorrectly detecting that I don't need it when I do.
I tried removing all of the Network devices and restarting the machine, but even after restarting, the problem persisted.
I did some spelunking and found using ifconfig that
en8 was to blame. If I
sudo ifconfig en8 down, it makes that interface inactive and then the mac enables the
iPhone USB device.
The details on the en8 device aren't very helpful:
$ sudo ifconfig -v en8 en8: flags=8863<UP,BROADCAST,SMART,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> mtu 1500 index 4 eflags=1000080<TXSTART,ECN_ENABLE> ether ac:de:48:00:11:22 inet6 fe80::aede:48ff:fe00:1122%en8 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x4 nd6 options=281<PERFORMNUD,INSECURE,DAD> media: autoselect status: active type: Ethernet link quality: 100 (good) state availability: 0 (true) scheduler: QFQ qosmarking enabled: no mode: none
The only identifying information there is the mac address, which resolves to a generic "private" space.
networksetup -listallnetworkservices gives no hint as to what that device might be and the device doesn't appear in the list from
I persisted and found en8 listed in System Information:
The device is iBridge, which with a search reveals that iBridge is for the touch bar.
en8 down, the touchbar appears to work, which makes me think the ethernet device is not in use at all.
I suspect this behavior is a bug and will need to be fixed in a future OS update, but I'm hopeful for some prospects.
Is it safe to leave
en8 inactive, or what issues might I encounter with that device inactive? Is there another way to configure that interface such that it is still up and functioning as Apple intended, but without signaling to the OS that it's a viable connection to a network when it is not?