[2008.9] Wifi very unreliable

Matthias Apitz guru at unixarea.de
Tue Sep 30 14:37:04 CEST 2008

El día Tuesday, September 30, 2008 a las 08:11:48PM +1000, Alex Osborne escribió:

> Matthias Apitz wrote:
> > I'm trying to bring up the eth0 with
> >
> ># ifup eth0
> >
> >this works very unreliable; in (let's say) 8 of 10 cases it can't
> >associate to the AP, even not after fresh re-boots and independently if
> >the AP at my home works with WEP or in my office with WPA;
> >  
> I found that with wpa_supplicant there was a problem with disconnecting 
> from an AP.  The essid would apparantly not get cleared properly on the 
> card (although iwconfig would show it as cleared) and until you manually 
> cleared it, wpa_supplicant would just sit in a loop trying to connect 
> and getting authentication timeouts.  You can see these message if you 
> run wpa_cli.  I worked around it by adding a pre-up that clears the essid:
> allow-hotplug eth0
> iface eth0 inet manual
>  wpa-driver wext
>  wpa-roam /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
>  pre-up iwconfig eth0 essid off
> iface default inet dhcp
> iface home inet dhcp
> This seems to work reliably for me except that I still have to ifdown 
> and ifup when I move to a different AP.  So if manually connecting with 
> iwconfig works for you, you could try same workaround. Here's what my 
> wpa_supplicant.conf looks like:

I have as well the feeling that, when I was associated once and leaving
the AP physically, I can't re-associate anymore, even not after a boot;

I tried your hint about 'iwconfig eth0 essid off' but it does not
improve the situation;

I've now filed a bug report as
with also a wpa_supplicant debug session; it tries to associate:

Trying to associate with 00:04:e2:a1:76:0b (SSID='santaclara' freq=2442 MHz)
wpa_driver_wext_set_operstate: operstate 0->0 (DORMANT)

Wireless event: cmd=0x8b1a len=18
Authentication with 00:04:e2:a1:76:0b timed out.
Added BSSID 00:04:e2:a1:76:0b into blacklist
No keys have been configured - skip key clearing
wpa_driver_wext_set_operstate: operstate 0->0 (DORMANT)

Matthias Apitz
Manager Technical Support - OCLC GmbH
Gruenwalder Weg 28g - 82041 Oberhaching - Germany
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