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Shoddy Internet Connection


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#1 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 08:45 PM

Hi all--
 
My wireless internet connection occasionally drops out. It's always easy to fix, though. Typically just changing a setting via the advanced settings page (via a browser) brings the connection back to life. For example, I typically change the "Maximum Number of Users" setting from, say, 50 to, say, 49. Then, after a few moments, the connection comes back to life. When that doesn't work, rebooting the router or power cycling the router and modem typically work.
 
But this really shouldn't be happening. The modem and router were both replaced recently. If it's a hardware issue, it (hopefully) would be one of the cables. I haven't really explored the possibility of impending hardware failure.
 
Make and model of computer: HP Pavilion dm4 laptop

How the computer is connected (wireless or wired): wireless

Make and model of Router: Cisco Linksys E1200

Approximate Distance From the router the PC is if its a wireless connection: this varies between about 15 and 40 feet

What type of internet you have (Dsl, Cable, T-1,etc..): Cable
 
I look forward to your suggestions!
 
--r0d3r1ck



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#2 chrisd87

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 12:07 PM

Do you have your ssid set to broadcast or not broadcast? I know that with some routers, when the ssid is set to not broadcast, that devices have a hard time maintaining connection.


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#3 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 08:03 PM

Interesting thought. The SSID is set to broadcast.

Still no idea what the cause of this is

#4 jhayz

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 02:11 AM

Just want to add a possible solution directly from Linksys support site : List of common issues with Linksys Wi-Fi and Smart Wi-Fi Routers and E1200 driver/firmware support. Updating the network driver is also another possibility.


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#5 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 03:29 PM

Thanks for the links jhayz!

The links certainly suggest some plausible causes.
It could be an ISP problem, though this seems unlikely. I might try a wired connection for a day or two just to see if it is an ISP problem.

Similarly, I might try the "re-flash" of the firmware.

Currently, UPnP is enabled, so once no one else is on the network, I'll be changing that and lowering the MTU (I've already determined the MTU value that is supposedly ideal).

Updating the network driver is also another possibility.

You're referring to the network adapter driver, right? I can't imagine that's the problem, as this issue applies to all devices on the network indiscriminately.

#6 jhayz

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 07:55 PM

For example, I typically change the "Maximum Number of Users" setting from, say, 50 to, say, 49. Then, after a few moments, the connection comes back to life.

Do you refer to number of IP addresses? How many devices connect wirelessly? Is the occasional dropouts not restored without the reset (?) or see if the modem is not the one loosing connection.


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#7 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 11:12 PM

For example, I typically change the "Maximum Number of Users" setting from, say, 50 to, say, 49. Then, after a few moments, the connection comes back to life.

Do you refer to number of IP addresses? How many devices connect wirelessly? Is the occasional dropouts not restored without the reset (?) or see if the modem is not the one loosing connection.

Yes, I am referring to the number of possible local IP addresses. So, to continue with the example, a value of 50 would allow IP addresses 192.168.1.100 to 192.168.1.149 and a value of 49 would allow IP addresses 192.168.1.100 to 192.168.1.148

The number of devices connected can vary between 0 and 8 or so, so it's always well within the number of possible IP addresses.

Yes, it seems like the occasional dropouts do eventually resolve themselves (after a minute or two). However, I only infrequently allow them to take care of themselves -- I'll try to let the next dropout resolve itself, to ensure that it is possible.

Looking to see if the router is the one losing the connection will certainly be something I'll work on.

Thanks again for your input! Hopefully I won't actually have to do any of the next checks -- I want to give a bit of time to seeing if lowering the MTU and disabling UPnP have positive effects. It seems promising. :)

#8 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 09:31 PM

An interesting development:
The issue does resolve itself. However, it resolves itself faster for some devices than for others.

I noticed the most recent mishap on my laptop. So I jumped on my ipad, and sure enough, I couldn't get pages to load. But a few moments later, my iPad was restored to full capability; my PC, on the other hand, was still struggling. It doesn't seem like it was a true outage of my Internet connection; it just seems like my connection/download speed absolutely [b]plummets[b]. Now, a few minutes after first noticing the drop, my PC is more-or-less back to fully functioning...the connection still feels a little slow, though.

#9 jhayz

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 09:43 PM

Check the modem lights for internet when this temporary shutdown happens. The blinking times on modem or router is different from a continous connection and activity to a non/temporary drop of bandwith. If it happens quickly, trace the modem and router lights as to where the drop on lights originate. If on router, check the wireless and wired lights. If router wired led lights drop, then it started from the modem itself.

PC is more-or-less back to fully functioning...the connection still feels a little slow, though.

When on downloading(?), that is normal as it needs to pick up again the full strength signal or bandwith.


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#10 technonymous

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:12 AM

You can't really expect much out of these low grade home routers and the radio they have. You get what you pay for. With them banging these out like hotcakes it's easy to get a lemon. You gotta spend like 200 bucks on something with dual rabbit ears. If you still get the same thing after a firmware update and checking network lines/connections then you probably need a more robust router. It's possible though that a desktop or wifi NIC itself is going out and just thrashing on the router.  I have had this happen before. The nic combined with poor freq keeps dropping out and reconnecting thus mimicking like a DDOS attack overloading the router. The router is spending most of it's time trying to keep connection it then crashes. Which is why I mention getting a more powerful router that has a beefy CPU and ram and rabbit ears to help boost the WiFi signals. Maybe relocation of the router might help mount it up on a shelf or something higher.

 

Good luck



#11 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 21 September 2013 - 05:20 PM

It happened again: pages stopped loading

Check the modem lights for internet when this temporary shutdown happens. The blinking times on modem or router is different from a continous connection and activity to a non/temporary drop of bandwith. If it happens quickly, trace the modem and router lights as to where the drop on lights originate. If on router, check the wireless and wired lights. If router wired led lights drop, then it started from the modem itself.

I was able to follow this advice, but all the lights were lit as usual.
 

You gotta spend like 200 bucks on something with dual rabbit ears. If you still get the same thing after a firmware update and checking network lines/connections then you probably need a more robust router.

It's funny you should say that -- I recently saw one of the Mods/Advisors, I think, praise ~$25 routers from Amazon.
 

It's possible though that a desktop or wifi NIC itself is going out and just thrashing on the router. I have had this happen before. The nic combined with poor freq keeps dropping out and reconnecting thus mimicking like a DDOS attack overloading the router. The router is spending most of it's time trying to keep connection it then crashes.

At this point, I really can't exclude any possibilities, but this one does seem unlikely, as the problem happens regardless of what devices are connected to the network...maybe all of my devices' NICs are dying :lol:
I should also note that no device ever acknowledges a faulty internet connection. The browsers fail to load the page and say so, but the system tray icon on my PC always shows an internet connection and my iPad always has the wifi indicator in the upper-left corner.

Thanks again, you two. I really do appreciate the suggestions.

#12 jhayz

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Posted 21 September 2013 - 10:43 PM

Approximate Distance From the router the PC is if its a wireless connection: this varies between about 15 and 40 feet

How many devices are connected regularly? You can drop the number of IP addresses to 30 (.02 to .30-33). This is my ISP wireless router suggested settings as typically all IP addresses for computers/devices connecting to wireless/LAN could still accommodate or acquire their dhcp addresses. Make sure that the guest network is also disabled if not used. The default settings for guest (open/unsecured) is enabled by default. You can configure guest network access to other devices also if you want provided a network passkey is set.

Excerpt from a user review on the Linksys Model. http://voices.yahoo.com/5-features-linksys-e1200-wireless-n-9047181.html

 

With virtually any router on a market, they'll usually come a time when things just don't work as well as planned, and when troubleshooting comes into play, the blinking LED lights that are featured on most modern routers can be invaluable. The flashing LED lights featured on most routers indicate network activity, but unfortunately, the Linksys E1200 doesn't support this feature and troubleshooting on the Linksys E1200 will lead to many headaches.


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#13 technonymous

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 08:36 PM

Yes there are some very good oldies, but goodies routers that can also handle the DDWRT 3rd party firmware which makes them more desirable. When your router has these issues what happens when you try going to 192.168.1.1? Do you get like a error 404 or anything or do you get the normal router interface? it sounds like it needs a firmware update or replaced. Have you gone and searched for a firmware update at linksys? What version of firmware are you running? All of this can be seen after you access the router typically at 192.168.1.1 in the web browser in the right corner. if you have the latest one you could try a DDWRT 3rd party firmware. I notice there is 2 versions e1200 v1 and e1200 v2 that can be flashed with DDWRT. On the bottom of the router it will show which version right after the model. You have to take every precuation doing this as you will brick your router and void your warranty. At this stage it's probably your only option other than junking it. Linksys more than likely ended support on it and I read Linksys was bought out.


Edited by technonymous, 22 September 2013 - 08:40 PM.


#14 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 10:50 PM

How many devices are connected regularly? You can drop the number of IP addresses to 30 (.02 to .30-33). This is my ISP wireless router suggested settings as typically all IP addresses for computers/devices connecting to wireless/LAN could still accommodate or acquire their dhcp addresses. Make sure that the guest network is also disabled if not used. The default settings for guest (open/unsecured) is enabled by default.

At most, 10 devices are connected. Regularly, about 3 or 4 devices are connected. So I did bump it down to 30 IP addresses. Do you think I should go any lower? I know my laptop typically uses .121 (in the range .100 to .129)
When I first set up the network, I disabled guest access. And I just confirmed that it is still disabled.
 

With virtually any router on a market, they'll usually come a time when things just don't work as well as planned, and when troubleshooting comes into play, the blinking LED lights that are featured on most modern routers can be invaluable. The flashing LED lights featured on most routers indicate network activity, but unfortunately, the Linksys E1200 doesn't support this feature and troubleshooting on the Linksys E1200 will lead to many headaches.

It does have an LED at each of the ports. From my last reply, when I went to check the LEDs, I said that all LEDs were lit as usual. That included the "internet" port on the router (where the router is connected to the modem via a Cat5).

That article kinda made me cringe. For the record, buying this router was not at my discretion. :lol:
 

When your router has these issues what happens when you try going to 192.168.1.1? Do you get like a error 404 or anything or do you get the normal router interface?

The problems reappeared just a few hours ago. In answer to you question: I am able to connect as usual to 192.168.1.1. It prompts me for a username and password, and after entering them, I'm able to access the settings pages. I can also say that with this latest instance of the problem, it did resolve itself...in about 5 minutes or less (I didn't keep a close eye on it).
 

Have you gone and searched for a firmware update at linksys? What version of firmware are you running? All of this can be seen after you access the router typically at 192.168.1.1 in the web browser in the right corner.

Well done. I could have sworn I checked the firmware update page within the last few weeks. But apparently 2.0.06 (Build 6) was released on 8/28. I'm running 2.0.05 (Build 2). One more thing to add to my to-do list :)
<http://support.linksys.com/en-us/support/routers/E1200>

I might post a pic of my router's label, because honestly, I've always been a bit skeptical about whether or not I'm interpreting it correctly. There's a little "v2" in-line with the model number, but they're really far apart. I'm probably just being paranoid :lol:
 

if you have the latest one you could try a DDWRT 3rd party firmware. I notice there is 2 versions e1200 v1 and e1200 v2 that can be flashed with DDWRT.

That's certainly something to consider. And my warranty is already expired
 

At this stage it's probably your only option other than junking it. Linksys more than likely ended support on it and I read Linksys was bought out.

...ouch.
------------------------------
I can't thank you two enough. :)

Edited by R0D3R1CK, 22 September 2013 - 10:51 PM.


#15 R0D3R1CK

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 10:50 PM

Update: I've made a new determination: when webpages stop loading, my router is still reachable (at 192.168.1.1), but my modem is NOT (at 192.168.100.1)

So the glitch must be between the router's "Internet" port and the modem's Cat5 port. Switching the Cat 5 cable made no difference.

AND

the "Modem's IP mode" is IPv6 only. That doesn't seem right...

Edited by R0D3R1CK, 25 September 2013 - 10:52 PM.





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