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Question Sky Q hub wireless

Dan201

Prominent Member
Hello all

I've been a Sky Fibre customer for just over a year now and recently picked up the Sky Q hub off ebay. Prior to that I was using the older black model. It was consistent but quite slow. I don't use any other Sky service, just their fibre.

A couple of questions:
My wireless signal seems strong enough in our flat but there are times I don't get any response from sites for several minutes. Is there anything I need to do when setting up to avoid this? Or should I inform Sky of my change of router?

I was expecting to see both a 2.4 and 5ghz wireless option when looking for networks but I don't. Is this normal? Our iphones are both wireless AC compatible.

Thank you in advance, much appreciated.
 

superbear

Established Member
Hi yes that is normal if you want separates 2.4 and 5 GHz networks you have to manually separate them in your Skyhub settings :)
 

Dan201

Prominent Member
Will 5GHz devices connnected automatically to the faster connection?

Im wondering if this could explain the internet drop outs. The wifi signal stays strong but theres no external internet from wifi.
 

superbear

Established Member
Will 5GHz devices connnected automatically to the faster connection?

Im wondering if this could explain the internet drop outs. The wifi signal stays strong but theres no external internet from wifi.
5Ghz is faster but has worse range and not very good at penetrating walls. You will need to connect your devices manually to your preferred band :)
 

Dan201

Prominent Member
And when the hub combines the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands, will my device switch between the 2? I wonder if that was causing the interruptions.
 

mickevh

Distinguished Member
Could do if your client (or router) is not particularly slick at handling the handoff from one waveband to the other.

If/when to switch is up to the client device - it's not prescribed in any of the standards, though a lot of vendors favour 5GHz as it often avails faster link rates (speeds.)

However, it's big Wi-Fi Myth Number 2 that clients are always "hunting for the best signal" - they don't. Some clients need the incumbent session to get pretty grotty before they initiate a "roaming assessment" (see if there's anything better available.) This can have an unintended consequence that you might (for example) initially connect to (say) your 2.4GHz SSID, then the signalling conditions change so that 5GHz becomes a better choice, but the client hangs on to 2.4GHz because it hasn't got "bad" enough for the client to contemplate switching.

If you want to explicitly choose which waveband to use, then you need to name the SSID's differently, however with different SSID names your clients will never switch between them until they completely loose connection. This is because clients regard dissimilar SSID names as being "different" networks and won't flip between them until all connection is lost and the client "starts from scratch" as if you'd just turned it on. This would almost certainly create a perceptible "glitch" in the usage experience.

To stand any chance of automatically flipping between wavebands the SSID names (and passphrase etc.) must be identical. Thence the client considers both wavebands as belonging to "the same" network and might initiate a roam between them as signalling conditions deteriorate but don't get so bad as to completely loose the session.

It's exactly the same situation as if you had multiple Access Points - you can essentially think of "dual band" AP's and routers as being two AP's in one (physical) box - one AP serves one waveband, one AP serves the other.

There's no real right or wrong way to do this (same or dissimilar SSID names in each waveband.) Many people prefer the same SSID option with the chance of automatic roaming but some prefer to be able to explicitly choose and accept that automatic switching will never occur.
 
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Dan201

Prominent Member
Thank you for the detailed reply, I appreciate it.

After a couple of days testing it seems the 2.4GHz band is fine, the 5GHz one seems to be the one that has interruptions in external internet connections. I don't understand why though as I have have 2 out of 3 bars of wifi signal on my phone when this happens. If the cause was the limited travel of the 5GHz band then the signal would drop as it struggles but this doesn't seem to be the case.

At least I can use 2.4 GHz without an issue but the hole point of buying the newer hub off ebay was to get faster speeds on my LAN. I wonder if I've bought a faulty unit off ebay.
 

mickevh

Distinguished Member
There's very much more to maintaining a Wi-Fi session than "how many bar you are getting." It's just too simplistic to say X bars equal Y quality of service. The numerous permutations would require a huge essay to explore, but I'll cite one example:

If "next door" are using Wi-Fi too, and their network is tuned to the same radio channel as yours, if next door embark on a large transfer that utillises all the available capacity and (effectively) prevents you from transmitting, you'd see the sort of symptoms you describe - the (pesky and almost invariably misunderstood) "bar" meters show a "good" (enough) "signal," but you don't get any data transfer happening.

Or perhaps next door are using a baby monitor (which isn't even a "Wi-Fi" device, but uses the same radio frequencies) and next door's baby monitor is "blowing out" your Wi-Fi experience when little lambikins starts crying.

The symptoms you describe sound like some external interference effect (though there could be other causes.) Wi-Fi is more susceptible to interference as the signalling conditions deteriorate. The radio frequencies Wi-Fi uses are not exclusively for Wi-Fi - they are more or less "general purpose" and anything can use them as long as they don't exceed certain power levels - Wi-Fi is actually considered a "secondary" usage. Other users of these radio frequencies are microwave ovens, baby monitors, video senders, car alarms, unlicensed walkie-talkies, weather RADAR, to name just a few.

Wi-Fi is fundamentally unreliable (if you want reliable data networking, then you need to install your own dedicated purpose made cabling - ie ethernet,) but if one is determined or compelled to use Wi-Fi, then to get the best chance of it working well, the aim is to get the communicating peers as close together as possible, which essentially means putting up multiple AP's to create a cellular coverage pattern. The "trick" is how you establish the "backhaul" link between the AP's and the rest of the "proper" cabled data network.
 
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AndyThorn

Established Member
Hi - this seems to be a good place for this question. After a number of WiFi issues the sky engineer advised to split out the 2.4 & 5ghz bands which I have done. The issue I now have is that Sky Q seems to be connected at 2.4 with no way I can see of manually connecting to 5ghz? For info we also have a mini box connected upstairs. Anyone able to help with this? Thanks
 

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