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Wireless (Apple) Businesses Apple Hardware

Apple Offers Update to Recent AirPort Update 54

Posted by pudge
from the please-to-be-fixing-problems dept.
Milanek writes "Apple has released new version of AirPort Update 3.4.1 which solves problems introduced by the last AirPort update, 3.4." A great many people complained about lower signal strength after the 3.4 update last week.
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Apple Offers Update to Recent AirPort Update

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  • It works! (Score:5, Informative)

    by NivenHuH (579871) * on Monday April 26, 2004 @07:59PM (#8978252) Homepage
    I installed the update and can confirm that my signal strength is back to what it normally is..
  • The lack of signal strength was causing some severe crashes here and there. It's good to have both NLS and GlideSlope back up to working levels, because without them it's virtually impossible to let the system auto-handle itself (requires extensive manual control to get it to work correctly when those two utilities are down).

    Good work to Apple, and don't let it happen again!
  • "Apple Offers Update for the Updated Update to Recent AirPort Update Which was Updated Before by another Update previously..."
  • Bad Apple Updates (Score:2, Insightful)

    by sukhjeet (697236)
    Apple hasn't had the best of luck recently with their updates. Unfortunately, I update my 12" G4 PB pretty soon after they are announced here on /. Nothing too terrible has happened to me, but it would be nice if Apple was more careful or patient in releasing updates. I guess some things are hard to predict, but it definitely doesn't make people like me happy.
    • Rather than complaining about your or Apple's "bad luck" why not post some details as I've personally not had any troublesome updates recently. Maybe you've got a terrible case of "user error"? I know I've had that before and it feels much worse than catching the flu.

      One thing I am sure to do, especially with OS updates, is Repair Permissions on my system volume before installing the update. I have no hard proof, but I've written shell scripts before and I'd speculate that incorrect file/folder permissions
      • Re:Bad Apple Updates (Score:3, Informative)

        by gumbi west (610122)
        Okay, keep your pants on man. Go to google and type "Airport 3.4" and see what the news stories are. Notice they all are titled things like "fixing [...] 3.4" or "improving [...] after installing 3.4" or "[...] uninstal[...]"
      • Most slashdot readers will know that Apple bungle far too many updates, Working with designers who use Mac's I know of a few more!

        Yeh I know anti-apple will get me modded down, but you know I actually do have a very valid point. There's someone a few comments up who basically said I'll wait a while for other people to see if its ok, surely that's apples job!
      • Backup dump truck...

        unload: sarcasm:

        Yes: run the Cron scripts, empty the trash, make certain you have enough free hard disk space for the upgrade, be certain you are running an account with administrator status, have TechTool 4 check everything, be certain that the swap files are in good shape and that they have enough space, consider optimizing the main drive, disconnect all firewire and USB devices, shut down the BLUETOOTH keyboard and mouse, run DiskWarrior 3.02 from the new boot CD you created three d
  • Works fine here (Score:5, Informative)

    by jabex (320163) on Monday April 26, 2004 @08:15PM (#8978360) Homepage
    All is well over here with the 3.4.1 update. Now I can finally dig into those Airport Management Tools.

    linkity link [apple.com]

    Apple also put out a doc on the tools (link to PDF article)
    clickity click [apple.com]
  • by ItMustBeEsoteric (732632) <ryangilbertNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 26, 2004 @09:07PM (#8978677)
    ...on my 900MHz iBook G3 12". Better reception that 3.4 it seems, but I didn't suffer a major hit to signal when upping to 3.4.

    A great way to check your strength is MacStumbler [macstumbler.com] which also has some tasty war driving applications if you're so inclined.

    With 3.4, I was getting a signal of as low as 81 in my room in some places (as far as 30 feet from my router), and now with 3.4.1 I'm above 100 everywhere in the room. Rock!
  • I'm getting bus error crashes when trying to download the patch on two different Macs, one a G5, the other a G3 iBook. The session goes something like this:

    % sudo softwareupdate -d AirPortSW-3.4.1
    Password:
    Software Update Tool
    Copyright 2002-2003 Apple Computer, Inc.


    AirPort Software: 0...10...20...30...40...50Bus error

    %

    This is very repeatable for me -- it happened three times on one machine & twice on the other. I don't remember the softwareupdate command having a problem like this before.

    On the other hand, I was able to use Safari to download the .dmg directly from Apple [apple.com], and Safari hasn't crashed on me. And the fact that people are reporting success with this suggests that the GUI tool is working, &/or the problem is local to the download option for the command line tool.

    Still, it's annoying -- I was hoping to skip downloading it over & over, and this was much more of a kludge than I had in mind...

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Oh, I had that problem last week. You just need to downloBus error

      or

      "Bus error" is just Apple-speak fBUFFERING

      NO CARRIER
    • I had the installer crap out on me (just exited, not even an alert window) when trying to upgrade the developer tools a couple of weeks ago. Turns out there was something wrong in its package subdirectory /Library/Receipts/DeveloperTools.pkg. Apparently there was a file in there that had gotten crosslinked, even though I run journaling. So I rebooted into single-user mode and ran fsck on my boot disk. Then I deleted the package subdirectory and it installed just fine.

      I recommend booting into single-use

  • OH NO! (Score:4, Funny)

    by teamhasnoi (554944) <teamhasnoi@@@yahoo...com> on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:59PM (#8979452) Homepage Journal
    I installed this update and now my cats are clawing their eyes out, my freezer defrosted, and my chair is on fire.

    On a positive note, I can more easily connect to my neighbor's very weak network - it's increased in strength x2, and my signal seems to be somewhat stronger (10-15 pts. on kisMAC)

    • Re:OH NO! (Score:3, Funny)

      by "Zow" (6449)
      I installed this update and now my cats are clawing their eyes out, my freezer defrosted, and my chair is on fire.

      So, what you're saying is that things are better now?

  • I'm waiting . . . (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grolaw (670747) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:14AM (#8980083) Journal
    Because I have learned my lesson: don't live on the bleeding edge if you have real work to get done.

    I'm fat, dumb and happy and staying with 3.3.1 for the next few weeks. I'll let others play around with this update till the bugs are worked out.

    Thanks to ^Fish Sun^ for the reversion page. That saved my entire day.
  • no problems here... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by NateTech (50881) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:07AM (#8980466) Homepage
    Had the supposedly "buggy" patch installed, and then got the new one. Never saw a difference in wireless signal strength. All bars lit.

    Of course, the AP is located in a strategic location in the house using sound RF engineering principals to determine the location and not stuffed in a dresser underneath the clean socks, and a pie tin, as it would appear the whiners have done to themselves... ;-)

    Locating it as close as possible to the client machines and strategically centered in the middle of the desired zone of coverage while moving it appropriately closer to clients that are behind walls and other objects that soak up energy at 2.4 GHz -- works very well.

    Knowing the limitations of the signal and being willing to install a second AP if necessary to get the desired coverage is probably also something that helps.

    If your signal strength is marginal, fix the root cause -- get better antennas (while remaining with the legal Effective Radiated Power limits) and put them in the correct locations.

    The physics of RF at 2.4 GHz haven't changed any recently, last I checked.

    If you're running with a single bar for signal strength you haven't designed your RF patterns/system layout correctly. Fix that. Then a silly software bug that lowers signal strength by one bar will be as *yawn* unexciting as it was here...
    • by Textbook Error (590676) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @05:47AM (#8981636)
      Had the supposedly "buggy" patch installed, and then got the new one. Never saw a difference in wireless signal strength. All bars lit. Of course, the AP is located in a strategic location in the house using sound RF engineering principals to determine the location and not stuffed in a dresser underneath the clean socks, and a pie tin, as it would appear the whiners have done to themselves... ;-)

      Conversely I had the AP located 40cm away from the PowerBook, passing through 3cm of wood, and got repeated loss of signal (I'd still be joined to the network, but would be unable to pass IP traffic anywhere: even to ping the base station).

      This was a 1.25Ghz AlBook connecting to an original Graphite base station. A G3 iBook connecting to the exact same base station from 2 rooms away was absolutely fine with the update installed, but the AlBook was lucky to last 5 minutes before losing the connection.

      The physics of RF at 2.4 GHz haven't changed any recently, last I checked.

      Although a lot of people complained about the signal strength dropping, there were definitely other problems with the previous release. I was still getting 5 bars, yet was unable to make a stable connection - absolutely nothing else changed on the Mac or the AP apart from this update, and since rolling it back I haven't lost the connection once.
      • Fair 'nuff. Sounds like there were other major problems with that patch with some hardware. Guess I got lucky.
    • Of course, the AP is located in a strategic location in the house using sound RF engineering principals (sic) to determine the location and not stuffed in a dresser underneath the clean socks, and a pie tin, as it would appear the whiners have done to themselves... ;-)

      Hey wait a minute; I used noisy RF engineering principles too, and I thought the pie tin was an excellent way to make my Airport more directional (keeps the signals out of the neighbor's apartment, not to mention lets my powerbook "rebound"

  • Is this a firmware update or driver?
    I use a powerbook but have linux installed on it. I have no idea what version the firmware is so I am reluctant to consider an update as it may effect the linux drivers. Can some one confirm that the drivers for linux will still work if this is a firmware "upgrade."
    • In the case of all the firmware updates I've done, like the superdrive or bluetooth mouse, software update has just downloaded a program to /Applications/Utilities for you to run later rather than updating straight away. With the 3.4.1 update, no such program is downloaded. Perhaps it's reasonable to assume no firmware is altered?
      • There were already airport firmware updates without asking or notifying the user about them.

        On new (old-style) airport cards a very old firmware version is installed. If you use them under OS X, the first time you do, a new firmware version is automatically installed.

        You notice this, because WEP doesn't work under Linux before the update, but after using the card under OS X it does.
    • As far as I've understood, it is a driver update for OS X, and FW update for Apple's AirPort (Extreme) base station.

      As I don't own an APBS, I think this whole FW problem was more related to the APBS than AirPort cards. This is because though I do not have any access point at home, I've been able to roam around at school quite normally without any signal problems with my APE-equipped PBook. And no, the access points there are definitely not Apple ones...
  • by onebuttonmouse (733011) <obm@stocksy.co.uk> on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @10:21AM (#8983648) Homepage
    Big improvement on my 12" PB. Good thing too, it was getting really hard to pick up the neighbours' cable connection. I was about to ask them to move their AP a bit nearer.
  • Anyone else experience problems with the ABS losing WAN connectivity with 3.4?

    I have incoming SSH open, and I noticed that once a day (or every other day maybe) with 3.4 I would lose access from outside, and then when I got home, I noticed that I could ping the ABS but not any outside IP. The ABS still had a valid WAN address from DHCP, but somehow had lost the ability to get out through the cable modem.

    Anyone else have this happen? and has it abated for you with 3.4.1?

  • This just goes to show that you always should wait at least a week before installing any updates from Apple. I myself lost a battery on an iBook 500 with 10.2.4, and my airport extreme siganl on my 12" powerbook with this airport update. This will be the last time I ever install an Apple update without scrutinizing the forums first for potential bugs.

  • The signal weaknesses weren't my primary concern about the 3.4 version. My problems were with actually connecting to my networks, and being blatantly dropped. Sometimes this resulted in me having to reboot my system.

    With this update I could not wake from sleep and automagically get onto my home network. Other times I would be dropped, have to turn off Airport, and then turn it back on to even see the network. This didn't fix my problems a majority of the time. There is no real excuse about signal st

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