1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
Dismiss Notice

Welcome To SNBForums

SNBForums is a community for anyone who wants to learn about or discuss the latest in wireless routers, network storage and the ins and outs of building and maintaining a small network.

If you'd like to post a question, simply register and have at it!

While you're at it, please check out SmallNetBuilder for product reviews and our famous Router Charts, Ranker and plenty more!

My iPad refuses to roam

Discussion in 'General Wireless Discussion' started by steve23094, Apr 24, 2019.

  1. steve23094

    steve23094 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    Messages:
    56
    One of my devices refuses to roam.

    I have a Synology RT2600ac router and Synology MR2200ac wireless point hooked together using Synology’s mesh system.

    The two access points are located at opposite ends of the house. When at one end the signal of the point at the opposite is pretty weak. All my other devices roam without a problem as you move around the house, this includes an iPhone SE, iPhone XS, iPad Pro 11, MacBook Pro 2017 and iPad mini 2.

    The only device that refuses to roam is an iPad 2017. It hooks onto the RT2600ac and stays there. Disabling WiFi causes it to drop off the RT2600ac and then when turning it back on it just hooks back up to the RT2600ac, despite being in the room with the MR2200ac and a much stronger signal. The only way to force it to hook onto the MR2200ac is to reset network settings which is a temporary fix. Moving to the other end of the house it will connect back to the RT2600ac and stay there again.

    Does anybody have any thoughts on a fix?
     
    sd70mac likes this.
  2. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Messages:
    13,795
  3. Klueless

    Klueless Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    596
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Brute force? Have an extra SSID for each end of the house (e.g., north side, south side) then simply connect iPAD as needed. Not very elegant but some devices are just plain recalcitrant.
     
    L&LD likes this.
  4. steve23094

    steve23094 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    Messages:
    56
  5. steve23094

    steve23094 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    Messages:
    56
    I have considered that, but as you say it’s an ugly solution. I’ll probably see what iOS 13 brings in case it’s a bug.
     
  6. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    13,998
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Reset network settings in the iPad 2017 - I've seen this fix many issues.
     
  7. Trip

    Trip Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2014
    Messages:
    718
    Beyond what's already been said, I wonder how possible it might be to fine-tune 802.11r/k/v settings on the Synology?

    802.11r - It's possible iPad may be too sluggish doing reassociation request processing, such that it could be missing the RDT (reassociation deadline timeout), which if allowed on the Synology, could be adjusted to a larger interval.

    802.11k - The proper .11k IE's (Country, Power Constraint and RM Enable Capabilities) should of course be there in the beacon transmits, so .11k integrates properly with Apple iOS stuff. Not so much you can do about that on the Synology, but if you ever did a WireShark capture, that might tell you something. Then again, if you have other Apple devices that are roaming just fine, it may just be the iPad's wnic driver stack that is to blame - largely nothing you can do there.

    802.11v - If the Synology allows for changing (decreasing) the baseline RSSI value required for BSS transition management requests, you might be able to coax the iPad into more aggressively requesting queries, and roaming better/sooner as a result, hopefully without adversely affecting the behavior of other clients, and/or battery life of them too much either.

    I know much of that is probably wishful thinking, especially with most SOHO type products. At that point, @Klueless 's advice may be the best option, as ungraceful as it may seem.
     
  8. Klueless

    Klueless Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    596
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    <lol> You're absolutely right but it did tickle my funny bone!

    One can collect multiple wireless access points under a single SSID or under multiple SSIDs. Either should work but there is always the recalcitrant client. Occasionally one won't roam properly under a single SSID but will roam properly through multiple SSIDs. (The reverse is also true.) The OP may get "lucky". Worse case he can force a flip when he's on the wrong side of the house
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
  9. Trip

    Trip Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2014
    Messages:
    718
    Absolutely. I think that's about the best he can hope for... besides perhaps paying the Apple Tax® again :eek: and ponying up for a replacement iPad to see if newer/different client hardware does the trick.
     
  10. steve23094

    steve23094 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    Messages:
    56
    Yep, tried that (more than once). Thanks though.
     
  11. steve23094

    steve23094 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    Messages:
    56
    Hmmm... you have got me thinking.

    Synology RSM does have a feature called Smart Connect. This is designed to steer a device to either the 2.4 or 5Ghz band. If you want you can manually configure this to select your own RSSI levels when it will switch from one to the other. Perhaps I can manipulate this to achieve the same thing?
     
  12. Trip

    Trip Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2014
    Messages:
    718
    Absolutely worth a shot, but first I would do some testing for RSSI levels at/around the mid-point overlap of the router and AP unit (where levels are weakest and clients are most likely to start roaming). Then compare this to what's set in the Synology platform, then increase the sensitivity by, say, -5 or so dB (so if it's set to -75dB, adjust to -70dB), which should cause BSS roaming requests to be sent at a slightly higher drop threshold. That might work just well enough to "coax" the iPad into behaving better. You want to be careful with this, though, so you don't make all client roam too quickly, and end up on too weak a signal in the overlap to not end up pinging back and forth from AP to AP.

    Also, this is where power level adjustment and/or AP placement come into play. You want to get the broadcasts and power levels such that radios are close enough and/or power level high enough to provide adequate service in overlapping coverage and during roaming, yet far enough away and/or low-enough power that signal strength over distance maps very clearly towards one radio or the other. This will keep clients homed to the proper AP more naturally in the first place.

    Hope some of that helps!
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
  13. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,664
    Location:
    texas
    What iPad is it?

    Never Mind. I found it.