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Old 07-06-2009, 12:54 AM   #1
Caldus
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Fedora 11, ThinkPad T400, Intel 5300 seems to drop connection a lot?


Hi,

I just got a ThinkPad T400 laptop and have been having some issues with my wireless card. It is an Intel 5300 card. It seems like on average every few minutes the connection just seems to drop randomly. The network manager still seems to think everything is fine since it never pops-up anything saying the connection has been dropped. Yet, when I'm trying to get on a website, it either takes forever and when it finally does load, it doesn't load right and I end up having to refresh it, or it immediately goes to the Offline page. The logs don't seem to indicate anything obvious going on. Of course, all I did was have some windows up with tail -f /var/log/messages or dmesg running to see if anything unusual is going on. Nothing is reported when these drops happened.

I know it can't be my router, because any other device can connect to it just fine. This laptop never has trouble connecting to it and getting a DHCP address. That part always succeeds. It's just that while I'm browsing it just randomly drops the connection and it's frustrating. I'm starting to believe it's something to do with the driver of this wifi card or maybe even the wifi card itself. I've been googling various posts about people having similar issues with these cards but haven't found a solution yet. I have two hard drives for this laptop that I swap out. One has Windows Vista (the OEM-provided drive) and another drive with Fedora 11 loaded on it. What's interesting is that it doesn't work on Windows very well either. So I tried upgrading the driver and things got even worse. When I upgraded the driver, it then couldn't even find a DHCP address anymore and thus I couldn't go anywhere with that. I decided to give up on that and figured I really only cared about getting the wifi to work better on Linux for now.

I have a wired connection on my desktop nearby that connects to the same router. It seems for the most part to work fine. Every once in a while I might get a dropped connection but it's much less frequent than my laptop. I guess I should try to post some details about what I have...

Code:
[xxx@localhost ~]$ lspci
00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset Memory Controller Hub (rev 07)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset PCI Express Graphics Port (rev 07)
00:03.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset MEI Controller (rev 07)
00:03.2 IDE interface: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset PT IDER Controller (rev 07)
00:03.3 Serial controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset AMT SOL Redirection (rev 07)
00:19.0 Ethernet controller: Intel Corporation 82567LM Gigabit Network Connection (rev 03)
00:1a.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #4 (rev 03)
00:1a.1 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #5 (rev 03)
00:1a.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #6 (rev 03)
00:1a.7 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB2 EHCI Controller #2 (rev 03)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) HD Audio Controller (rev 03)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) PCI Express Port 1 (rev 03)
00:1c.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) PCI Express Port 2 (rev 03)
00:1c.3 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) PCI Express Port 4 (rev 03)
00:1c.4 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) PCI Express Port 5 (rev 03)
00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #1 (rev 03)
00:1d.1 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #2 (rev 03)
00:1d.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB UHCI Controller #3 (rev 03)
00:1d.7 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) USB2 EHCI Controller #1 (rev 03)
00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile PCI Bridge (rev 93)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation ICH9M-E LPC Interface Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation ICH9M/M-E SATA AHCI Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) SMBus Controller (rev 03)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc Mobility Radeon HD 3400 Series
03:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Wireless WiFi Link 5300
15:00.0 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c476 II (rev ba)
15:00.1 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Ricoh Co Ltd R5C832 IEEE 1394 Controller (rev 04)
15:00.2 SD Host controller: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C822 SD/SDIO/MMC/MS/MSPro Host Adapter (rev 21)
15:00.3 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C843 MMC Host Controller (rev ff)
15:00.4 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C592 Memory Stick Bus Host Adapter (rev 11)
15:00.5 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd xD-Picture Card Controller (rev 11)
In lsmod, I see a iwlcore entry:

Code:
iwlcore               114756  1 iwlagn
Code:
[xxx@localhost ~]$ dmesg | grep iwlagn
iwlagn: Intel(R) Wireless WiFi Link AGN driver for Linux, 1.3.27kds
iwlagn: Copyright(c) 2003-2008 Intel Corporation
iwlagn 0000:03:00.0: PCI INT A -> GSI 17 (level, low) -> IRQ 17
iwlagn 0000:03:00.0: setting latency timer to 64
iwlagn: Detected Intel Wireless WiFi Link 5300AGN REV=0x24
iwlagn: Tunable channels: 13 802.11bg, 24 802.11a channels
iwlagn 0000:03:00.0: irq 31 for MSI/MSI-X
wmaster0 (iwlagn): not using net_device_ops yet
wlan0 (iwlagn): not using net_device_ops yet
iwlagn 0000:03:00.0: firmware: requesting iwlwifi-5000-1.ucode
iwlagn loaded firmware version 5.4.1.16
Any ideas? Anyone else out there having this issue on Linux?
 
Old 07-06-2009, 07:46 AM   #2
lepht
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iwlwifi does randomly crash, and often doesn't notify NetworkManager of it. i've not seen it do it that frequently though - it might be to do with the fact that you've got a newer laptop; didja file a bug at the iwlwifi project?

L
 
Old 07-06-2009, 04:18 PM   #3
salasi
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Do you have a decent signal strength all the way through this process? Do you have neighbours using the same channels (or any other cause of interference 2.4G is quite busy)? Either of those could be bad and need checking out before anything else.

You should be on solid ground with intel wireless chipsets as they seem to be well supported and standardised, in comparison to some of the others.

Could you try opening a console (konsole or whatever terminal app you have with your choice of gui) and run a ping task in the background, something like
Quote:
ping -i 10 a.b.c.d
(where a.b.c.d is the dotted quad address of something else on your network, probably your router; something like 192.168.1.1 commonly)

This will show up whether you are getting intermittant response times.

Sometimes I've seen the very task of trying to run a ping like that act as a 'work-around' for network connections that, if left to their own devices, would time out. I'm not sure exactly what happens, but wifi hotspots sometimes do this (probably either a time-out in the user logging process, or a time-out in an over-agressive firewall causing it to get out of sync with your packets).

Also network manager has been a bit buggy (at the very least in a cosmetic sense) latest versions seem much better; can you ensure that you have the latest for your distro?
 
Old 07-06-2009, 11:35 PM   #4
avalonit
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Have you tried another wireless network just to isolate the issue to your machine?
 
Old 07-10-2009, 12:52 AM   #5
DanceMan
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Location: Vancouver BC
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It could be hardware.

I have a used IBM X31 that keeps dropping the wired LAN connection. I put a pc card lan in it and the connection is solid. In my case it could be an intermittent connection of the RJ-45 receptacle to the motherboard. If you can borrow a pc card wireless lan, it would help in isolating the source of the problem.
 
  


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