M1 Macbook Pro constantly roaming

Macguy
Getting noticed

M1 Macbook Pro constantly roaming

So this is a weird one.  I have an elementary school with MR42 and MR46 AP's.  I've been using this 2020 M1 Macbook pro and noticed that I cannot keep a connection to an MR42 without the device roaming every minute or so.  I'm fine in a room with MR46 AP's.  I can go to our High School and be connected to a single MR53 for hours without roaming.  All my networks are running firmware 28.6.  Rebooting the AP's hasn't helped.  On my Intel 2017 Macbook Pro there are no issues.  Going to open a case with Meraki on Friday.  I think it has something to do with the M1 wireless chipset and firmware 28.6.  From my wifi signal app on my M1 Mac:

Spoiler

Event

Date

BSSID

Vendor

AP

Network Name

Signal Strength (dBm)

Noise (dBm)

SNR (dB)

Mode

Channel

Channel Width (MHz)

Band

Rate (Mbps)

MCS Index

Security

Annotations

Roam

05-24-2022 15:27:35

BE:17:D8:C8:AD:B5

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:C8:AD:B5

admin

-45

-93

48

802.11ac

40

40

5 GHz

130

7

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 08:59:27

EE:9E:38:70:B9:44

(null)

EE:9E:38:70:B9:44

admin

-80

-95

15

802.11ac

36

40

5 GHz

27

1

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 08:59:47

BA:17:D8:06:3D:3A

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:06:3D:3A

admin

-81

-92

11

802.11ac

153

40

5 GHz

14

-1

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:00:06

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-48

-92

44

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

400

1

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Join

05-25-2022 09:00:16

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-48

-93

45

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

400

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:01:14

BA:17:D8:05:F6:C2

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:05:F6:C2

admin

-84

-94

10

802.11ac

149

40

5 GHz

400

1

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:01:35

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-49

-96

47

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

400

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:02:25

BA:17:D8:05:F6:C2

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:05:F6:C2

admin

-84

-94

10

802.11ac

149

40

5 GHz

14

-1

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:02:46

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-49

-94

45

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

19

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:05:02

BA:17:D8:05:F6:C2

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:05:F6:C2

admin

-83

-91

8

802.11ac

149

40

5 GHz

39

4

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:05:23

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-51

-95

44

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

400

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:08:04

BA:17:D8:05:F6:C2

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:05:F6:C2

admin

-84

-94

10

802.11ac

149

40

5 GHz

26

3

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:08:47

BA:17:D8:06:3D:3A

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:06:3D:3A

admin

-81

-95

14

802.11ac

153

40

5 GHz

30

8

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:16:54

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-46

-95

49

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

173

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:18:14

BA:17:D8:05:F6:C2

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:05:F6:C2

admin

-86

-89

3

802.11ac

149

40

5 GHz

54

5

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Roam

05-25-2022 09:18:35

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-49

-91

42

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

26

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

Disconnect

05-25-2022 09:22:11

1A:8D:CB:70:4F:87

Cisco Meraki

Meraki:70:4F:87

admin

-51

-96

45

802.11ac

44

40

5 GHz

400

9

WPA2 (PSK)

 

 

20 Replies 20
GIdenJoe
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

It's a bit tough to see what the rssi was on the old AP just before roaming.  It does make a few roams within 30 seconds but it does improve on RSSI.  However the next roam to a much worse signal happens over a minute later.  So if this is a moving laptop then it could be due to that but if it is perfectly stationary without the environment moving then yes it is acting up strange.

Definitely just a stationary laptop on a desk.  I've been connected to an MR53 here at our High School for hours.  The moment I connect to an MR42 the roaming issue happens.  I'll probably have to open a case with both Apple and Meraki. 

PhilipDAth
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

Any chance it is AP load balancing kicking in, and the MR42 is heavily loaded?https://documentation.meraki.com/MR/Other_Topics/Client_Balancing 

 

You can create an RF profile to disable this if you think it might be related.

https://documentation.meraki.com/MR/Radio_Settings/RF_Profiles 

Nah, disabled.  I'm literally the only one in the area and it will still roam constantly.  I've even tried this when teachers and students weren't in the building. 

Brad-In-Tampa
New here

Your vlan's HSRP standby [group number] may have the value of another vlan's HSRP standby [group number]  

 

We just experienced somewhat of the same thing. After hours the team figured out the following after noticing some informational notices. 

We corrected the issue and the problem went away.  Change the configuration back to the wrong value the problem started again. Corrected it and the problem went away.   

Hey Brad,

 

All the Meraki AP's in the building are connected to Meraki Switches which I don't believe support HSRP.  While I was in the building yesterday I couldn't reproduce the issue.  Connected to same AP for hours.  So frustrating.  Last three times I was at the building the roaming was constant and had to plug in ethernet. 

Macguy
Getting noticed

Still trying to figure this one out... Many others are complaining in the Apple forums and other sites.  This morning my laptop decided to roam several times to other AP's very far away (when I was directly under the AP in room).  Tried disabling "Limit IP Address Tracking" in WIFI prefs as suggested in Apple forums.  So far my laptop has remained connected for 3 hours.  Also set IPv6 as Local Link Only.  My co-workers Intel Macbook Pro in same office didn't roam all morning.  Also had a Chromebook next to me that stayed connected to same AP all morning too.  Time will tell I guess. 

Macguy
Getting noticed

I love how Apple is "fixing" this in macOS Ventura 13.1 ONLY.  Forcing M series customers to be running Ventura.  Not shocking or surprising. 

Macguy
Getting noticed

Looks like this still isn't fixed in Ventura 13.1/13.2.  I have a Chromebook and an Intel based Macbook Pro next to me that remain connected indefinitely.  The M1 Macbook Pro seems to keep roaming to distant AP's randomly. 

 

Double Roam at Valley.jpg

Macguy
Getting noticed

It seems that the roaming occurs when a channel change event happens.  The device roams to an access point quite far away, then disconnects due to "client not responding", and finally re-associates to closest access point.  This isn't related to the long "excess frame loss" thread with 29.x firmware.  We are still on 28.7. wifisignal-4.4.jpg

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

@Macguy as far as I am aware, the channel change only occurs when no clients are using the radio (possibly with the exception of a change to avoid a radar channel).

Macguy
Getting noticed

I've been managing Meraki for years now and have seen channel changes while clients are connected.  I use the Wifi Signal app on my mac and see channel changes in real time with notifications. 

Macguy
Getting noticed

There were 10 clients connected to AP and the channel just changed... Channel Change.jpg

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

You could try fixing the channel of the AP to see if that stops the roaming behaviour.

Macguy
Getting noticed

I can try that this week.  Problem is, that isn't a long term fix.  The intel based Mac never roams and even my test Chromebook (both on same desk).  I'm convinced it has something to do with the M series chipset. 

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

I'm suggesting it as a way of determining if the channel change is the issue, or merely a coincidence.  I agree it is not a long term fix, that will probably have to come from Apple.

Macguy
Getting noticed

Agree.  We should be getting some M2 Macbook Pro's in soon.  Curious to see if our issues are purely M1 series related.  Going to hard set the channel this week on the AP in our IT office and see what happens.

Macguy
Getting noticed

Manually setting channel on AP resulted in perfect connectivity all AM.  So the other thing I tried is initiating multiple channel changes while connected and the M1 didn't roam at all.  Not really sure there is a difference when the AP automatically changes channel versus admin changing in UI?  Going to see if the M2's have the same issues when they come in. 

Macguy
Getting noticed

Scratch that.... this morning just randomly roamed with fixed channel set.  I give up, just going ethernet until I can test with M2.  The disconnection reason in logs was "client not responding".  My device had perfect connection and I was working normally. 

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