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Apple posts AirPort 3.4.1: Most problems resolved, some resurface

Apple posts AirPort 3.4.1: Most problems resolved, some resurface

Apple has posted an AirPort 3.4.1 updater, alleviating a number of the problems users experienced with version 3.4.

MacFixIt reader Matt Carrell writes "Airport v3.4.1 fixed my 12" PowerBook G4 (867 MHz) to slightly better than pre-3.4 levels of reception. Signal to noise is improved according to the Airport Client Utility. My actual throughput is one setting consistently better than under 3.2 or 3.3. Bar level indication from the Airport menu icon is consistent with v3.2 and 3.3 again. Actual real world results show restored and perhaps slightly improved performance. My shadiest reception zone which would typically achieve only 1-2 Mbps throughput in Airport Client Utility measurements now gets 1-5.5 Mbps consistent throughput depending on antenna alignment (position of the powerbook relative to the base station."

Documentation, version reading the same Unfortunately, Apple has simply rehashed the documentation from AirPort 3.4 for the 3.4.1 release.

Additionally, the Airport Admin utility still reads 3.4, so it is difficult to tell when a system has the new release installed.

Problems Despite the overwhelming success of most readers with improved signal strength and fewer dropped connections with the AirPort 3.4.1 update, a handful of readers who downgraded to AirPort 3.3.1 are experiencing the same problems after applying the 3.4.1 release that they were with the initial 3.4 release:

Robert Ameeti writes "My 17" Powerbook is acting worse after doing the 3.4.1 update. I had previously updated to 3.4 but had to go back to 3.3.1 to maintain any decent connection. And even after having gone back to 3.3.1, I wasn't having the best of luck catching and staying on the my network, but with 3.4.1 the signal drops to nothing and comes back full strong even more frequently than 3.3.1 after the 3.4 initial problem. Before the 3.4 update I had great consistent attachment to my network.

"I am 12 ft from an Apple Base Station, and 20 ft from a D-Link access point. I'll have 4 arcs in the menu after connecting to a signal and then 20 seconds later, my AirPort will drop off completely and I won't be finding *any* signal. If I turn off the AirPort via the menu bar, and turn it back on, I can then again see the AirPort signal and get back on my network but it will drop off again within minutes or seconds. It comes back after a few minutes only to fall off again. So frustrating. Thankfully I keep a 50 ft Cat-5 cable handy."

More signal strength bars, but more dropped connections Richard Berg writes "I was using 3.4 version reasonably successfully. The low airport signal strength was a pain, to be sure. But at least I didn't have a problem with dropped connections. The connections stuck pretty well (but 3.3.1 was better!).

"I was looking forward to the 3.4.1 update, hoping that the 3.3.1 performance would return. It does not! After applying the 3.4.1 update (via the software update mechanism), I now have more bars on the menu bar icon meter display, but now the machine will drop airport connections every few of minutes, apparently no matter how close I am to the base station. I can reconnect using the menu bar airport icon (and when I do need to reconnect, my local airport base station initially cannot be seen - but after a few seconds it comes back and I can then reconnect to it ). I takes maybe 30 seconds to get reconnnected. This is a major, major pain in the rear since it happens all too frequently. Often I VPN into the office and use MS Outlook to view my office e-mails (under classic). Well, Outlook goes crazy if it l looses its connection to our Exchange server, so this 3.4.1 self-disconnect behavior is going to cause me major, major headaches. I am thinking very seriously about going back to 3.3.1.

Barry Grimes adds "After applying the new 3.4.1 upgrade I cannot see nor connect to my airport base station via the AirPort Admin Utility. Signal strength is up and the network registers to clients (cards) but the Base Station no longer appears in utility via my hardwired network."

Feedback? Late-breakers@macfixit.com.

Resources
  • AirPort 3.4.1 updater,
  • Late-breakers@macfixit.com
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