Wifi connects, disconnects, connects, disconnects, again and again (WLAN Verbindungsabbrüche)

Hi community

[german only info:
Wenn du nur deutsch lesen kannst: Sag bescheid, dann schreibe ich es deutsch nochmal drunter]

Ok, let´s go on with english :wink:
I got my FP3 a few days ago. Update to the lates OS is done and device is set up so far.

I´m strugging at the moment with 1 strange issue about the wifi.

I´ve found a few posts here in the forum (and also some more troubleshooting tips on the net) while describe the issue more or less but by far the closest match was a post by grimmwolf in this forum:

My issue is slightly different:
Turning on the wifi causes a connected/disconnected/connected/… loop for about 5-20 Minutes. Most times while the screen is locked or after I waited long enough - then the connection is suddenly established and stable (for hours … days).
If I turn off Wifi again, restart the FP3 or walking out of the signal zone and back (to cause a reconnect) then the issue shows up again.

Simply spoken: whenever the connection becomes interrupted (by user, distance, reboot of FP) it takes about 5-20 Mins to make the wifi connection stable again which is quite annoying.

Something about my FP´s, router´s and network´s settings

The usual tips weren´t successful on my side like
setting the wifi on FP to 2,4GHz instead of auto
switching channels
going down to WPA/WPA2

After trying out a lot of tips (which didn´t help) and trying out different network settings I narrowed it down to one important thing; but first some info about my router, network/etc:

I got a Fritzbox 7362 SL as router (2,4 GHz only) with IPv4 & IPv6 activated that also serves as DHCP v4 and v6 server.
Also in the network is a pihole (on raspberry pi) that works as an adblocker and ivp4/ipv6 DNS server.
The pihole´s IPv4/6 addresses are entered in the router and each DNS request is be pushed from the Fritzbox through the pihole and be filtered or not before it goes out to the great wide net.

Before you point at the pihole or the network setup as root of all evil: uhm … not really sure if you should judge that fast :wink:
Yes, of course I also tested this setting above with the pihole not filtering anything at all.

That setup works flawlessly for about 2-3 years now with several win/linux pcs, mobile phones, and other wifi devices. Each one works fine just the FP3 got its little issues.

But one little click inside the Fritzbox and its network settings can make a difference:
(Following is translated from my german router interface - bear with me :wink: )

Option: DNSv6-Server in the local net
→ if the box in this option is flagged for “Advertise DNSv6-Server via Router Advertisement (RFC 5006)” then this issue occurs.
Below that checkbox is the local DNSv6-Server address entered (= my pihole´s IPv6 address)

This could be a solution for the issue but it also got a downside:
Without this flag for router advertisement all connected devices bypass the blocked website filters from the pihole by switching from IPv4 to IPv6 (if they support it, of course).

Mainly I´m questioning myself about these 2 questions:
Why is the FP3 actually having such issues while several other computers and android 8/9/10 mobiles don´t have any issue when being configured the same way?

Why does the FP3´s wifi become stable after 5-20 minutes and then works flawlessly and fast until the next reboot/wifi restart?

Anyone got an idea … a clue ? :wink:


Hi @DonFnord welcome to the forum. It seems you have a rather unusual set up. Does the phone stay connected elsewhere on 2.4 or 5Gz.

I have a Fritz box and Pi but not set up as yours, it’s just a straight Apache server etc. so no help there sorry to say.

On the odd chance it’s a signal issue, you know bluetooth works on 2.4G too. I have small Windows tablet with a vaguely similar problem. I must have the bluetooth off to get a stable wifi connection, once that’s done I can re-enable the bluetooth.

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Hi @amoun

Thanks for the friendly welcome

Blockquote Does the phone stay connected elsewhere on 2.4 or 5Gz.

I mostly have wifi turned off as I leave the house so I got no exp about this yet. But I assume it usually would work in other wifis (see below → works also if I put my FP in a guest network on the same router)

About the possibility of a signal issue with bluetooth & 2,4 GHz: Good info I didn’ know yet but also not affecting my situation since I got BT turned off on all devices.

Side info: By using a guest network from the router I don’t have that issue. (Same goes of course also for my main network if I do not forward DNS requests from the fritzbox to pihole)

Guestnetwork → wifi works instantly (but no ipv6 blocking from pihole)
main network w/ forwarding IPv4 & IPv6 to pihole → wifi disconnects again and again
main network w/ forwarding only IPv4 to pihole → wifi on FP works instantly (but all IPv6-able devices bypass the ‘only IPv4’ filters :frowning:

However, thanks for your hints. Good to know :wink:

Any other ideas?

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No other ideas as I don’t know what a pihole is or why to use it ??

Maybe I could set one up and see what happens :?

I have the same issue.

A pihole is using a raspberry pi as a DNS resolver which blocks access to undesirable websites via blocklists. This kind of setup can protect you from being tracked in your home network, etc.

I suspect (but don’t know yet) that when the Fairphone connects to WiFi it makes a connectivity check by pinging some server, and simply will close the WiFi again if that fails. If so, if access to the server is blocked, this behaviour would be the result.

I’ll be able to figure this out given a bit more time. But for now, that’s my best guess.

It’s very annoying, I can’t even perform the upgrade to a new OS version in this way.

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Hi DonFnord,
not sure what the problem is but I think I had that problem before with a non FP phone. Anyway, I have different ideas that you could try:

  • My issue in a non FP phone was that the building that I was living had a lot of different networks on(from other routers or TVs I guess) and there was a kind of conflict among of them, so I change the channel that my router was automatically using to connect to my devices. You can also switch off all the electronic devices except the router and your phone and check if the issue remains.

-Did you try it in a friend house(other network) if persists the same issue? I will try to update the phone there and then try to download a big file at home.

Well not sure if that be useful but you could give it a try.

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Hi you both

Thanks for taking a look at my topic and answering to it

→ that´s usually http://connectivitycheck.gstatic.com/generate_204 since android 6 (marshmallow). older android versions used http://clients3.google.com/generate_204

Whitelisting the URLs above or even disabling all blocks (so that the pihole just forwards everything) didn´t solve my issue.

But thanks for guessing. :wink:
I´ve mentioned it cause maybe it helps others …

→ a workaround for this could be to establish a guest network in the router which has direct connection to the internet. This works for me to download/perform android updates on my FP but is just a bad workaround because I use my mobile to connect/ssh to several other computers on my (cabled) local network. Therefore I´d prefer it keep all my devices in the same ip network.


Thanks for that advice but not fitting to my issue, too.
My router got no other wifis around (therefore perfect signal) and my other devices most times don´t have any wireless connection turned on which could interfere.
Also experimenting with channels, etc didn´t change anything here.

BTW, I just think I´ve perceived some pattern:
If the FP`s screen locks and I unlock it just a few minutes later then most times wifi is almost directly (!) stable.
As long as the display stays unlocked then the connection fails again and again for >15-20 mins.

But that´s just gut feeling so far and difficult to test reliably.

Well, all that feeds my assumption that somewhere in between the chain of “FP3, router and pihole” some device doesn´t communicate correctly. My feeling tells me it´s the FP because it´s just 1 out of 5 mobiles which got the same wifi settings but only FP shows this issue.

However ‘feeling’ is a bad advisor for fixing network issues :wink:

Maybe as an advisor but as an incentive it’s could be what is needed though tiring. Take a loooong break :slight_smile:

Ok, so I think I found the reason. The guest network I have set up is WPA2 only, the main network is WPA2/WPA3 - is that the same for you? If so, that’d require an update to the OS of the fairphone.

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Also see Is WPA3 officially supported? As it does no longer work

Thanks for this hint and digging deeper.

Both networks here are on WPA2 only. (router w/o WPA3 support)
Guest network works fine. Main network doesn´t.
I´d say the only main difference is there´s no pihole inbetween as a filter (IPv4 & IPv6 is pushed through it)

Also let me point back up to my initial post:

Without having all the IPv6 stuff being directed from the router to the pihole there´s no such issue with starting the wifi connection on the FP3.

Unfortunately if I only route IPv4 through the pihole and IPv6 got a direct connection to the internet some tricky pages and apps bypass the pihole´s blocks :tired_face:

Btw: I kinda followed this advise, too. :wink:
I set the lock screen to 30 mins timeout and watched the screen each few mins (did this again and again for several hours … yawn).

This pattern seems to stay:

Wifi is switched off and I turn it on again …

  • if the display stays unlocked it takes more than 30 mins of constantly failing to log into the wifi
  • if the display locks and I wait at least 5 mins with a locked screen then most times the wifi connection is magically established and stable for hours.

Locking the screen after switching on wifi seems to speed up the process of FP3 grabbing a stable connection. Sounds strange, right ?

And how may that fit into that aspect mentioned above about the IPv6 setting ?
If IPv6 is not forwarded the FP´s wifi connetion is also directly established.

Just some strange coincidence ?!


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