Reply

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

tubastank
Apprentice

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Just updated my support case with the following.

"Prior to one week ago I was having nothing but problems with my Orbi system and one satellite. The other satellite was unplugged. I have the current beta firmware installed.

Dropped packets which interrupts Webex, VoIP, gaming. I was also experiencing disconnects on iOS devices, MacBooks, an iMac and a Windows 10 laptop.

One week ago I decided to do a little experiment. I disconnected my 2nd satellite and have only been using my Orbi router. No satellites connected. This required me to move the router from the unfinished basement to the main level so wifi coverage was better throughout my household.

I've experienced no disconnects in this time. I've experienced dropped packets but not enough to even register anything over 0%. No interruptions and my wife and kids are not after me because the wifi is up and down. This week has been peaceful.

So...what is the deal Netgear? The Orbi router + one satellite was very bad and adding another satellite was a nightmare. Contention between the satellite & router? Backhaul issue between the router and satellites? Netspot did show the backhaul signal was up and down when I had one satellite connected. Is there a steering issue?

Both the backhaul and steering come into play when a satellite is introduced. No satellite, no need for a backhaul. No satellite, no need for steering as the only thing for a wifi device to connect to is the Orbi router.

So which is it? Is it the backhaul, steering or both?"
Message 26 of 72
JMU1998
Luminary

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Can anyone using Beta Firmware comment if this is still an issue?

Message 27 of 72
DESIi1
Star

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Where are you getting beta firmware?  It is not shown on the downloads page for the RBR50 or RBK50? 

 

What was it intended to address?

 

Thanks

Al

Model: Orbi High-Performance AC3000 Tri-Band WiFi System (RBK50)
Message 28 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I got the beta from a support ticket. It did not change the backhaul dropping and it made the disconnects even worse. The mod DarrenM pops in on some of these threafs and if you PM him your information I think he can send you the beta. Don't get your hopes up!
Message 29 of 72
tubastank
Apprentice

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I can confirm what BobertSaget is saying...at least for the backhaul dropping and disconnects even worse. The only thing that's helped me so far is unplugging both satellites and just using the Orbi router; a solution that defeats the intended use of the system.
Message 30 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

 

I have looked at the backhaul with five scanning applicatons, two MacBook Pros, and both OSX and Windows 10 operating systems.  In all cases I saw either no backhaul or intermittent presence of the backhaul in the plotted RSSI vs time.  Despite this I have not experienced any WiFi network problems with Orbi.

 

Today I borrowed an Android device and did scanning with that.  Initially I couldn't see the backhaul reliably with the Android either. After several OS updates I am now able to capture solid backhaul plots with three different Android apps: WiFi Analyzer from VREM Software Development, WiFi Analyzer by farproc, and WiFi Analytics from NETGEAR. All these apps show a stable signal for as long as I've monitored. Screenshots for the three apps are here. These are taken with a 2013 Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 running Android 4.4.2 "Kit Kat":

 

NETGEAR WiFi Analytics

 

WiFi Analyzer--farproc

 

WiFi Analyzer--VREM

 

 

So, a stable Orbi backhaul RSSI plot does exist, but some hardware/client combinations cannot capture it. This is on stock firmware v1.10.1.2.

Message 31 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Thanks st_shaw, very interesting and confusing at the same time. I wonder why different clients report the signal differently? I don't have any old Androids but I would be curious to check mine if I did.
Message 32 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Just checked and the 2013 Galaxy Tab 3 doesn't have ac Wi-Fi. That must have something to do with the results.
Message 33 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

@Retired_Member I don't know either. Could be something to do with the hardware and drivers.  All the hardware I've tested with so far is 802.11n dual band. That should be all thats needed though.

 

I've looked at wireshark a bit, but it's pretty involved and I need more time to understand the traffic.

 

Did you try using NETGEAR's WiFi Analytics app on your Android?

Message 34 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I used the Netgear Wi-Fi Analytics and Wi-Fi Analyzer on different phones that were all on Android 7. I used inSSIDer on a Windows 10 laptop. I didn't have a Mac to try on.

Support had me install Wireshark and send them logs a while back. I didn't know how to interpret the results either but there were a lot of intermittent red and black rows. They would never tell me if they saw anything unusual.
Message 35 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

 

Right. No AC, but it has a 5GHz a/n radio and that should be all that's required, based on inssider's documentation of approved WiFi cards anyway. They say:

 

"

802.11ac Support

If you want to make sure that you can scan for 802.11ac networks, all you need is a 5 GHz a/n compatible adapter.

 

All 802.11ac management traffic is backwards compatible with 802.11a/n, so we can find out everything we need to know about an 802.11ac network with an 802.11a/n adapter.

"

 

I can see the probe requests from the Samsung and the probe responses back from ac APs on wireshark, so it's working.  And, the Tab 3 is the only device that reports a stable backhaul!

Message 36 of 72
OrbiMan
Luminary

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Also guys please note that backhual drop only occurred for 1-2 seconds at most. If your wifi analyzes every 5 secs u won't see it. Pay attention to the time unit
Message 37 of 72
David-T-Rex
Initiate

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I have to throw my hat into the dropout ring as well. 

Wifi Analyser

 

when it works, its great and most of the time is not a major issue - but when I am streaming plex/netflix etc its a royal PITA. 

Message 38 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

 

I did more testing this weekend with a couple 802.11ac USB adpaters. My conclusion is still the same-->Whether the backhaul appears stable depends upon the wifi adapter and wifi scanning software used to make the measurement. This is because detection of hidden SSIDs is poorly supported by common chipsets and scanning software.

 

Most combinations of software and wifi adapter I have tried do not properly capture the Orbi's hidden SSID backhaul signal.  The signal is either spotty or not shown at all.  I have an Techncolor AP with a hidden SSID and it behaves the same as Orbi's hidden SSID.

 

According to Netspot Pro, their software will only work properly if you connect to the hidden SSID.  That's not an option with Orbi.

Netspot

 

inSSIDer says their software does not officially support hidden SSIDs. inSSIDer Office on a Mac will not show the Orbi backhaul or hidden SSIDs at all.  However, inSSIDer folks say certain WiFi chipsets will work under WIndows.

inSSIDer

 

One of my cheap USB WiFi adapters, an Edimax EW-7811UTC, happens to have a chipset that inSSIDer says works with hidden SSIDs.  I was able to capture solid graphs of the Orbi backhaul with Windows 10, inSSIDer Office, and this adapter.

inSSIDer Backhaul Plot

 

@Retired_Member You said you have inSSIDer on a Windows 10 laptop.  I haven't seen any plots you shared from that setup, so I assume the results were spotty also. Will you please get one of these Edimax adapters ($15) use it with inSSIDer and Windows 10 to measure your backhaul? The results should be very interesting.

Amazon EW-7811UTC

 

 

Message 39 of 72

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

@st_shaw

 

hi st

 

i thought that may have been the case as i too have noticed it all depends on the adapter and or software used , have even tested this by running a transfer over the link and watching its prograss while at the same time watching the backhaul link , the backhaul link can show drops but the transfer remain solid

 

not saying its the only reason but it certainly does look like in this case its more a reporting issue than a hardware / software issue of the orbi

 

 

Message 40 of 72
Alcarnor
Initiate

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I'm seeing the dropouts on the pixel as well, but also on the several android devices, have noticed the power drain issue since setting up Orbi. It's gotten a bit better with the current firmware, but nowhere near where it ought to be.

 

Also saw the dropouts on Wifi Analyzer on the Pixel. (short interval for scans will show it; the netgear analyzer has too long a default scan time)

 

When it works, it's great.Nice and fast. I might have to unplug the satellite to see if that helps at all. (And as others have noted, what's the point of the Orbi if it doesn't work with the satellites?)

Model: Orbi High-Performance AC3000 Tri-Band WiFi System (RBK50)
Message 41 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

@peteytesting I've also run a UDP transfer when the backhaul was spotty on other scanning apps.  No dropped packets.

 

It seems like the combination of the Edimax EW-7811UTC (Realtek RTL8811AU chipset), inSSIDer, and Windows10 will reliably show the backhual. The makers of inSSIDer say that chipset works for hidden SSIDs.

 

If anyone who sees the backhaul dropouts can try this combination, it would be very informative.

 

Message 42 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

st_shaw, first thanks again for posting more results. From reading the inSSIDer blog it sounds like those they list are only some they know will show a hidden SSID. It sounds like if the adapter did not support hidden SSID's then it would show nothing instead of a dropping signal. Personally I don't think it has anything to do with the ability to read the signal but it has everything to do with the scanning interval.

In those graphs you posted, it shows several minutes and a drop that lasts might not show up. The images I posted were probably 30 seconds max for the entire graph.

I'm not quite ready to buy a new adapter because I can already see the backhaul just fine and it looks exactly the same on every device I've tried. You may very well have a backhaul that doesn't drop but that would make you the first with those results.

If connections were solid and I had no disconnects, I wouldn't care what the backhaul was,doing. But as long as my Wi-Fi is dropping constantly when I connect to the satellite, I'm going to keep blaming the backhaul which is also dropping on my Orbi at least. If the backhaul is stable and we are all reading the graphs wrong, Netgear should be jumping up and down telling us this so we can stop the witch hunt. But of course they blatantly ignore any mention of the backhaul except for the one post saying to contact support. This sure seems like a hardware fault and users are considering a class action suit over it. Netgear could easily **bleep** that in the bud if it's nothing to worry about.

I have not run any file transfer tests but I have done a simple ping test to google from a satellite connected laptop and the results are erratic. Around 20ms for multiple pings and then close to 1s out of nowhere.
Message 43 of 72
JMU1998
Luminary

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I am sure Netgear Engineering has read about this issue on this thread so what has Netgear has to say? how is it going to be fixed after internally reproducing It? do we get a Refund? A Hardware upgrade(with the fix)? Or just simple denial? 

Message 44 of 72
Retired_Member
Not applicable

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Answer: Simple denial and pretending they haven't seen the threads.

Such a disappointment.
Message 45 of 72
gasongasoff
Initiate

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Any updates? Will flashing back to a prior firmware solve the issue?

Message 46 of 72

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero


@gasongasoff wrote:

Any updates? Will flashing back to a prior firmware solve the issue?


 

the issue seems to one of incorrect reading of the apps with certain wireless adapters used rather than an actual backhaul issue , rolling back fw wont help as the orbi will just roll it forward again , new fw wont be far of and should fix a lot of connectivity issues according to those in the community using the latest beta fw 

Message 47 of 72
MrMagoo122
Initiate

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

Good morning peteytesting,
How are we supposed to read the apps correctly? This sounds like my issues but I want to verify.

Can you attest that there is no problem with the backhall?

Thank you
Message 48 of 72
st_shaw
Master

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

 

@MrMagoo122 I have tested this quite a bit. It's a matter of using one of a very few combinations of: 1) wifi adapter, 2) device driver, 3) operating system, and 4) WiFi scanning app that can effectively "sniff" wifi packets as required to sample the backhaul.

 

 

I have confirmed you can use Acrylic WiFi Professional on Windows10 with a Netgear AC6200 v1 (Broadcom chipset) USB adapter and get a reliable graph of the backhaul. But, you must use the Acrylic NDIS driver, put the adapter in Monitor mode, and lock the WiFi adapter on the backhaul channel (157 for me), or at least limit channel scanning to 5GHz channels only.

 

 

If you don't use a scanning setup that supports monitor mode and that allows control of the channel-scanning, you will miss some of the backhaul packets because the scanner is busy scanning other channels. Some software will report this as a drop in signal.

Message 49 of 72
Doug-48051
Luminary

Re: Orbi backhall signal dropping to Zero

I also... have a threat on this issue.  My WD NAS wired to SAT dropped internet 6 times today... about 3 hours a part.

Doug-48051
Orbi Wifi 6 and SAT
OS: Win10 | 36 connected devices | Router and Sat. about 50 ft a part. (two walls)
Message 50 of 72
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