• Xfinity wifi problems


    I have Comcast Xfinity for my home internet service. I use their rental modem/router. The problem I am having is that it is difficult to get a reliable connection via wifi. Also, my powerline Ethernet adapters keep losing their connection and I have to re-pair them with the master unit.

    If I run a long Ethernet cable to anything, it connects instantly and stays connected.

    I believe I have figured out the problem: Xfinity combines the 2.4 Mhz and 5.0 Mhz hotspots into one joint hotspot, then assigns the channel and the speed based on what it thinks is best. Based on comments I have read online, this is the source of the wifi problem. But Xfinity doesn’t let you reconfigure the modem to separate the two hotspots, nor select the channel you want to use.

    I believe I’ve found a solution: Get a wireless access point, and plug it directly into the modem. (There are four available Ethernet ports on the modem.) Then configure the wireless access point to have two separate hotspots: 2.4 and 5.0. I did this, and so far, so good. Things are working very well when I connect to one of those two hotspots.

    It was either that or purchase a Comcast-compatible cable modem (could cost as much as US$200).

    Group "L" (Linux Mint)
    with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
    • This topic was modified 2 months, 1 week ago by MrJimPhelps.
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    • #2544960

      I bought a Motorola MG 7550 in July 2021 for $139.  It works fine.  How much in rental fees have you paid since July 2021?  I’ve been with Xfinity for several years, now, but never rented their modem.

      Always create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates; you may need to start over!
      We were all once "Average Users". We all have our own reasons for doing the things that we do to our systems, we don't need anyone's approval, and we don't all have to do the same things.

      • #2544963

        I don’t know how much I am paying in rental fees — it isn’t clear from my bill. I pay $55 per month including tax for my internet service, which is less than I paid at my previous address for DSL with a different ISP.

        Perhaps when my contract runs out around July, I will purchase my own modem; I have a good router to use with it.

        Group "L" (Linux Mint)
        with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
    • #2544976

      I believe I’ve found a solution: Get a wireless access point, and plug it directly into the modem. (There are four available Ethernet ports on the modem.)

      That is precisely the resolution I have used for some 10-15 years now — first with AT&T and lately with Comcast, as well. I’ve been helping clients with their home networking for a couple decades, and flakey wifi connections have been a common complaint.

      AT&T’s “2Wire” branded stuff is absolute junk — and has been since the very beginning when AT&T acquired the brand from a failing phone-line networking company (from whence the name “2Wire” derives). I’ve seen their gateways randomly drop a client device’s wifi connection a mere 5 feet from the gateway.

      I originally wasn’t used to seeing the same kind of problems with Comcast gear, but in recent years have increasingly seen more and more wifi problems with their gateways, as well. I never explored why, but now that you mention it, the “good” Comcast gear I’m remembering might have been 2.4 Mhz only.

      IAC, my go-to solution was to simply add a new WAP or wifi router plugged into the ISP’s gateway device. I generally prefer the router solution, as it adds additional isolation and let’s you repurpose the gateway’s wifi as a guest network.

      I just used the same solution last year at my daughter’s rented house. One roommate was working from home and having daily dropouts, despite being only about 20 feet from the Spectrum (their ISP) gateway. After adding a secondary router, everything has been working perfectly.

      I should add the other roommate claims to have never had any problems, so it seems like some phones and laptops are more sensitive than others.



      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2545568

        My options were: (1) Add a wireless access point, and connect everything to it, or (2) purchase a Comcast-compatible modem. Since I had an available WAP, and since I already had an Ethernet cable running from the Comcast modem to a more central location in my house, the WAP was a no-brainer.

        Now that I am using the WAP as my hotspot, we have zero connection issues. Everything works like a champ – instantaneous and fast.

        I bought the WAP on Ebay for about $25. It was brand-new, still in the box. It is a Netgear WAC104 with two big antennas.

        Group "L" (Linux Mint)
        with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
    • #2547234

      Not to nitpick, but your Comcast device is a “gateway” not a “modem”. The term refers to a device that functions as both a router and a modem. Probably “Internet box” would have been a better term, but “gateway” is what we have.

      As for which WiFi channel to use on each frequency band, I suggest using WifiInfoView at nirsoft.net. Great program, tons of techie details, free and portable.

      You did not say if you disabled the WiFi in the Comcast device. If you can, it would be for the best.

      And, for Netgear hardware be sure to check for bug fixes, there have been quite a few lately.

      Get up to speed on router security at RouterSecurity.org and Defensive Computing at DefensiveComputingChecklist.com

    • #2547688

      I now use the wireless access point for all wifi connectivity in the house. Not only have all wifi connectivity issues disappeared, but I can now access the shared drive on my Linux computer from my Windows 10 laptop. (I couldn’t access it before when the laptop was connected via wifi; I was able to access it when the laptop was connected via an Ethernet cable.)

      Also, I was having some connectivity issues with Powerline Ethernet when the main unit was plugged into the Xfinity router; but now that I have plugged it into an Ethernet port on the wireless access point, I am not seeing any connectivity issues with Powerline Ethernet.

      In short, everything is now working like a champ.

      Group "L" (Linux Mint)
      with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
    • #2553655

      Another thing that seems to have been affected by the Xfinity router, and which now works without any problem, is wifi calling on my phone.

      Wifi calling has never worked well with my phone and at my house, since I have been using Xfinity as my ISP. However, it appears to now be working without any issue, since I am using the Wireless Access Point as my hotspot for the phone. It was choppy before; but the sound quality is perfect now.

      Group "L" (Linux Mint)
      with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
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