Mifi 4510L needs to be addressed...
brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

Hello Verizon,

After 2 updates to this device (currently running it at 2.23) it still does not work correctly. Since the 2.23 update my 4510L disconnects exactly every 2 hours after being started (down to the minute). Before you guys give me the canned response that's been given in every other 4510L thread, allow me to outline what I have tried to remedy this with:

1. Cycling the Power

2. Full Reset to factory defaults

3. Removal of SIM for 30 seconds so it looks for a new tower

4. Setting power options so that disconnect is set to "Never"

5. Setting wireless hotspot to B/G instead of B/G/N

6. Set WWAN connection mode to EVDO only (as I don't have 4G/LTE in my area)

That said, here are the logs for my last couple disconnects. Keep in mind I started the unit at 7:37PM:

System Log> HTML Version 26.

01/01/12 11:40:36pm> Current Time

01/01/12 11:39:57pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 11:39:56pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 11:38:19pm> NWPM_EVENT_CALL_CONNECTED

01/01/12 11:38:19pm> HDR/EvDO Connected

01/01/12 11:38:08pm> NWPM_EVENT_CALL_END

01/01/12 11:38:08pm> HDR/EvDO Disconnected

01/01/12 11:38:08pm> [RUIAUTO] Invalid packet state

01/01/12 11:38:07pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 09:38:06pm> NWPM_EVENT_CALL_CONNECTED

01/01/12 09:38:06pm> HDR/EvDO Connected

01/01/12 09:37:55pm> NWPM_EVENT_CALL_END

01/01/12 09:37:55pm> HDR/EvDO Disconnected

01/01/12 09:37:55pm> [RUIAUTO] Invalid packet state

01/01/12 09:37:54pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:58:35pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:58:33pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:58:13pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:57:56pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:57:47pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:57:37pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:57:22pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:57:00pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:56:47pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:56:37pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:56:31pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:56:09pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

01/01/12 07:56:00pm> HDR/EvDO Out of Dormant State

01/01/12 07:55:41pm> HDR/EvDO in Dormant State

As it stands (and after approximately watching it do it down to the minute at least 50 times now), I can count on having to reconnect any programs that depend on a steady connection at 1:38AM tonight. As someone who plays online games (particularly MMOs) having to drop everything every other hour just to reconnect it all is just not acceptable.

After discovering that the disconnects were down to the minute 2 hours apart, I have tried so many variations of fixes to get this to stop. So far only one method has yielded any hope, and that was a SIM card pull for 30 seconds. After doing so my 4510L's connection showed up as "EvDO Rev.Ae", and I had no problems for an entire 24 hour or so period (everything was GREAT); however, it eventually disconnected and my connection has shown up as "EvDO REV.A" since. No amount of SIM card pulls has gotten it to go back.

To other 4510L users: Please enable System Logs in your units and pay attention to the times the disconnects are happening. So far I have only seen one other person notice it was at a 2 hour interval: https://community.verizonwireless.com/thread/747796/ (unfortunately, who knows if it ever got resolved?)

To Verizon: Please stop giving us basic tech support and get someone on the ball to update the firmware on these units correctly. If you are already on this, give us an ETA on when we can expect some relief.

Thank you

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1 Solution
brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

Hello John,

I have finally resolved the issue (I think, still in testing but so far so good). It does appear to be limited to the particular Verizon tower I was connected to. After some searching I found a site that keeps track of cell phone tower locations ( Link: http://www.cellreception.com/towers/ ) and noticed that I was exactly in the middle of two Verizon towers, and my external antenna was pointing towards one and directly away from the other. So after getting my bearings, I performed the following steps:

1. Turned off unit, pulled battery and SIM for a couple minutes.

2. While unit still off/disassembled, pointed antenna dish to new tower.

3. Reassembled, powered up. No reset of settings was involved.

Sure enough, my usual "EvDO Rev.A" changed to "EvDO Rev.Ae" which I believe to be the second tower. Also sure enough, my connected time just went beyond the 2 hour mark.

So the moral of the story is this: If you are disconnecting every 2 hours (to the second) with the Mifi 4510L, call Verizon and figure out how to connect to a tower that isn't made of FAIL. Optionally, blow a few bucks for a directional antenna. The signal quality improvement is pretty massive (at least it was in my case) and it's ensuring I am connected to the working tower.

View solution in original post

25 Replies
seventysiren
Newbie

Much of the replies have been too technical for me.  Went from Verizon Broadband last year to mifi.  Am I ever sorry I did.  The Broadband worked great.  The mifi not so much.  First of all, we have a Verizon cell tower in our back yard.  Power at times is full, but at other times, only shows a bar or two.  But, the worse problem is I keep getting disconnected from the internet.  I will be working on something and all of a sudden I get the message webpage is no longer available.  This happens particularly if I am browsing through a web page with many pages to go through.  I do ok on page 1 or 2, but then when I try to go to the next page, I get kicked off.  I just got my new computer back from the tech and he said the problem was resolved when they did a reset on the device.  Well, I got it back and it continues to do the same thing.  Does that mean I have to do a reset everytime this happens, which is very frequent.  When the contract is up for renewal, I will have to think long and hard to renew.

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John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

Seventy,

Without knowing more about your specific problem you should assume that your MiFi will need to be reset or atleast powered on/off each time you have a disconnection.  It sounds like even though you are right under a tower, the signal is getting dropped and the MiFi is not able to recover itself.

Since you are not a techy I would suggest contacting VZW about your issue.  They should be able to walk you through the ususal troubleshooting to see if your device is performing appropriately.  If it is not then they should be able to determine if your device is malfunctioning and replace it under warranty.  At the very least they would have a track record with you archive the connection problems you have experienced, which makes it easier for troubleshooting and contract termination.  VZW is not always willing to waive the Early Termination Fee but they have been noted to discount the months where your service was not working correctly.

Some ideas you could try to help you isolate your problem on your own would be:

1. Use the MiFi at a different time of day (preferrably off-peak hours like the middle of the day)

2. Bring the MiFi to a different location and test it out

3. Power down the MiFi when it is not in use

4. Remove the SIM card for 10 seconds when you have a disconnection and try again

Feel free to report back to us and let us know if you notice a difference after trying the suggestions above.

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tim_lightfoot
Newbie

Subtitle this one: We found a better solution than mifi.

We have a mifi b/c we don't have other reasonable solutions for broadband where we live (went through HughesNet and WildBlue standard - both unsatisfactory).  We had no problems with the mifi until December (our area is 3G only) when all the network issues started, the firmware upgrade nightmares, and the constant dormant issues.  In the past month, this issue has become intolerable, and I've tried every solution mentioned on all of the forums.  We have the continuing connectivity issue, even at 3:30 am in the morning (when I know the tower is not jammed).

So, we took a chance and had the new Exede satellite service hooked up (from ViaStat - home of Wildblue).  Bingo - download speeds of 14 mbps and upload speeds at 2 mbps.  Yes, there's a latency (about 700 ms), but frankly, it has yet to go dormant once (yes, always on).  The cost for more capacity (7 Gb) is actually less than Verizon's 5 gig plan.

I know that for those of you that 'roam' with your mifi, this won't help.  But if you need broadband and have gone through all the other solutions, you should try Exede.  There is a great, long, long thread on DSLreports.com on this if you want to hear from others that have dealt with these issues (including 3G connection issues).

Thanks to all of you that have tried to help me with my mifi issues - John Getzke in particular.

Now, I'll deal with Verizon to get out of my contract - I've been saving my logs...hopefully that'll help.

Cheers!

Tim

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azscotts
Newbie

Just to give you my experience after my first 5 days with my 4510L... At day 4, I was longing for days of dialup and was ready to take this thing out to the parking lot and run it over with my truck before returning it to Verizon. However, I installed Speedtest mobile app on my iPad and I was driving around running tests. On my way to the Verizon store, I started getting 15-18Mbps download speeds. I drove around some more and came back to the office with it.

Now, inside the building I am consistently getting 4-7Mbps speeds whereas before I was lucky to get .08-.49Mbps and the thing was constantly going dormant. The LTE dBm is still sitting between 68-74, and the SINR LTE is at 9dBm but I am no longer slower than molasses and I can function.

It has been going strong for 2 days now, not sure why but it's just working.

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John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

,

What you described here is what I classify as a performance (speed) problem.  Those problems normally boil down to communication between the local towers and your device and can be corrected without the help of VZW.  I would assume that by driving around town your device had a chance to pick up fresh connections and correct itself.  By the time you returned back to your original location it reconnected with the correct local towers and your performance improved.

Make sure you beat up your MiFi while you are on your trial, the default is 14 days I believe.  Contact VZW for an extension if you have ANY outstanding issues before the trial ends.  That way you can avoid paying the ETF if the device does not live up to your expectations.

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azscotts
Newbie

Here's the latest since my original rant...

Connectivity problems (repeating resets, going dormant, slow/no connectivity) still continue.  There are times when the device seems to be either overheated or stuck in a loop of rebooting.  Anyone experienced with this knows that the log file flushes when a reboot occurs so there is nothing to review. 

Yesterday, I had 11 reboots in 5 minutes.  I don't know if there is a temperature problem or what but the dormant state and unreliable connection continues even when I am in a different area of the city.  NOTE:  I do not have to be inside to get the device to either go dormant and stop responding - or disconnect and reboot.  In fact, on one occasion I was parked in a mall parking lot and got a great connection, two minutes later the 4510 started rebooting over and over.  2 or 3 reboots later the device started working again.  (yes, I have done the hard reset and yes I am at 2.23 firmware).

I have walked around the parking lot and run tests from SpeedTest.net and can get anywhere from 1 Mpbs to 9 Mbps DL speed depending on where in the parking lot I am standing.  One corner by the carports seems to work better - if I move 10 feet in the other direction, the speed drops off significantly.

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wmhjr
Enthusiast - Level 3

I wish mine were dropping every 2 hrs.  Mine drops at random (with excellent signal strength).  And when there is only 1 tower remotely near it, etc.

There are so many defects in the 4150 (and frankly, the VZ LTE network) that it blows my mind.  VZ should be ashamed of this situation.  It doesn't even rise to the normal level of VZ support quality.

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jackib
Enthusiast - Level 2

LOL I wish I was that tech savvy, you're making me want to go rumaging through my stainless steel bowls to see what I could come up with, however I am sure I will need to go to the 3G store.  I have seen a Yagi antenna for about $70 which is directional and can be put outdoors but it says to use above the tree line.....geesh....why can't they just fix the danged towers and be done with it already?????

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jackib
Enthusiast - Level 2

Ok,mine is dropping every two hours on the nose!!! I am going to get a directional antenna and see if pointing to any of the three towers I have around me will get a better LTE signal than the tower I am connecting to now.  As far as my 3G, it's on day two with no dropouts and constantly plugged in.  At least if I need speed while i am home I can switch to LTE for a couple of hours and hurry up and get done what I need to before the 2 hour time limit...it's a race against the clock with 4G I guess.  Keep your fingers crossed I can get a non failing tower to zero in on, to be sure one of the three will work! (all three are about the same distance from me on the map)

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jackib
Enthusiast - Level 2

WOW, this is the first time I have actually seen a reason why all this is happening.  I am in the 4G LTE area, and I am close to two different extended areas on both sides of me.  I purchased this device 2 weeks ago tomorrow, and have had my trial period extended so that I can keep trouble shooting and they have also put in a ticket for a tech to come out and figure out what is going on with the towers in my area.  Mine will stay connected continuously on a US Cellular tower on EvDO only but the connection is slow.  On LTE Only, it drops the signal every two hours, sometimes in an hour, but I will need to look at my system logs so I can see if mine is doing the same thing yours is.  By directional antenna, are you using an outdoor antenna, and if so, what did you get?  I have the external magnet antenna that plugs into the device which did help my signal but doesn't prevent the dropouts.  I am going to look at the cell tower website that you posted as well.  I will also repost with my system log when I get back home.  It is good to see somebody figuring this out, because i have talked with three different technicians and getting different answers from all of them.  One of them even said it was the device overheating and shutting itself off! Funny, it doesn't do that while on EvDO only.  Third tech said it was my area....so why say I'm in 4G LTE area if I really am not, or if the service is going to be "iffy" at best?

brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

Hi Jack,

Your problem sounds pretty close to what I was experiencing. If it gives you any hope, I can happily say since I have pointed to the better tower it's not uncommon for my 4510L to hold a connection for more than 48 hours.

I currently live in a 3G only area (small town, won't see 4G for ages), so I bought a small Booster Antenna that operates in the 3G range only. The booster antenna can be found here: http://3gstore.com/product/2998_booster_antenna_wcables_for_novatel_mifi_4510l_improves_3g_only_not_...

Now for a *small* confession. I left this information out of my original posts and replies since I was 100% confident someone would come around saying "oh, well no wonder you're DC'ing!", but my directional antenna is home made. Being a computer tech makes me prone to trying some really archaic things in the name of science, so I decided to see what effect a stainless steel bowl positioned near the booster antenna would have on the signal. As soon as the diag showed my EvDO signal improve to the tune of around -15 DB, I was sold. So out to the shop I went, and this is what was born:

http://i.imgur.com/ECOZv.jpg

As you can see, I am using it inside the window that I keep the 4510L at. My solution is a bit hilarious, so if you feel the need for directional support you might just check the site with the booster antenna. They have several models, including indoor and outdoor directional.

EDIT: Also just for clarity sake, during all this my signal has been excellent using the above setup. I wouldn't expect an antenna to fix the problem I was having, as like said before, this appears to be a scheduled authentication thing happening at the tower you are connected to. The only reason my antenna got me out of the mess is due to it's directional capability forcing my 4510L to connect to a tower that wasn't plagued by this stupid auth bug.

Regards

John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

That antenna is sexy.

brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

I'm not sure which is more sexy. The antenna, or the 56 hour connection time I have right now in the middle of a large thunderstorm in a rural area. Still getting 5 bars. Smiley Happy

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John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

Jack,

Your results from (im assuming) 1st level VZW tech support are common.  I don't think that VZW gives them the tools and resources to properly answer questions of this caliber.  When it comes to field performance issues there is only so much they can do from thier desk/office.  In most cases you need to be escalated to a field tech to get to the bottom of it.

Still its important to call in and report these problems.  If they get enough complaints in an area then they can build a case to send someone out to examine the equpitment.  It also helps you build your case for getting out without fees if you can prove you have been working with VZW on the outages over a certain period of time.  Make sure you can get everything resolved before your trial expires and send the device back if it does not work the way you want it to.

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John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

,

The RUI auto error message displays a network connection problem between the MiFi and the Verizon Network.  There are no known solutions to the problem at this time.  I can think of one instance where another user recieved a replacement device and reported an improvement but it may have been a coincidence. 

Its true that Verizon has been plagued with LTE issues recently.  I wonder if your problems have started occuring as of a week or two ago?  If so it may be a response to whatever changes the network engineers are making to stabilize the network as a whole.  The MiFi devices are experiencing the same issues as many other Verizon devices at this time so there may not be anything Verizon can do until the larger issue is resolved.

A great article was published which may help you explain why the network disconnections are happening:

http://www.androidpolice.com/2011/12/19/this-is-why-your-verizon-galaxy-nexus-or-other-4g-lte-vzw-ph...

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brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

John_Getzke wrote:

Johnny Skipper,

The RUI auto error message displays a network connection problem between the MiFi and the Verizon Network.  There are no known solutions to the problem at this time.  I can think of one instance where another user recieved a replacement device and reported an improvement but it may have been a coincidence. 

Its true that Verizon has been plagued with LTE issues recently.  I wonder if your problems have started occuring as of a week or two ago?  If so it may be a response to whatever changes the network engineers are making to stabilize the network as a whole.  The MiFi devices are experiencing the same issues as many other Verizon devices at this time so there may not be anything Verizon can do until the larger issue is resolved.

A great article was published which may help you explain why the network disconnections are happening:

http://www.androidpolice.com/2011/12/19/this-is-why-your-verizon-galaxy-nexus-or-other-4g-lte-vzw-ph...

Hello John,

So far the article seems to fit my problem fairly well. After reading about the authentication issues, it makes me wonder if maybe the tower is set to require re-authentication every 2 hours? If I sit and watch the WWAN status, the connection immediately resets when the connection uptime reaches 2 hours (nearly to the second), then the unit spends about 10 seconds getting reconnected, and thus the timer restarts (which causes the 2 hour disconnect to creep forward about 10 seconds in the log the next round it happens).

Another issue that makes me wonder if it's this particular tower is the fact that when I did at one point after a reset get connected to "EvDO Rev.Ae" I had no problems for an extended period. Afterwards it has dropped back to "EvDO Rev.A" and the 2 hour saga begins again. Can you offer any insight on the differences between EvDO Rev.Ae and Rev.A? Currently my setup uses an external directional antenna, and I might have to go do some adjusting if the "Rev.Ae" is actually a completely different tower.

EDIT: Also, this problem began approximately 2 weeks ago but seemed much more random then. It prompted my upgrade to 2.23, and about a week later I noticed the 2 hour behavior.

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John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

It may very well be an issue with your local tower.  No other reports have come in to suggest that every tower acts the same way across the nation.  The only way you would know for sure would be to travel to a different area or point to a different tower.

Only Verizon could tell you if there is a different physical antenna in your area to point your external to.  I have read threads where users posted Verizon assisting them on the same question.  Try thier 1-800 number support first and see what they can tell you.

I am not familliar with the differences between RevA and RevAe.  Perhaps it was a fluke or a new experimental type of 3G connection Verizon is working on.  The only info I have on EVDO can be found on Wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EV-DO#TIA-856_Rev._A

Everything appears to be pointing towards network errors in your situation, especially the timeframe where it started happening.  Hopefully Verizon will continue to work in your area to improve thier service.  Otherwise you could try the different WWAN preffered Modes and see if you can work around the problem.

Use 3G only

  1. Power on the MiFi
  2. Connect to the MiFi
  3. Navigate to http://mifi.admin
  4. Sign into the MiFi
  5. Click the WWAN tab
  6. Click the More link at the bottom of the page
  7. Change the WWAN Preferred Mode from Global to CDMA Auto
  8. Click Apply
  9. Test your connection

Try CDMA Auto and also EVDO Only to compare.  If you happen to be in a 4G LTE area then try the LTE options too.

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brigandier
Enthusiast - Level 2

Hello John,

I have finally resolved the issue (I think, still in testing but so far so good). It does appear to be limited to the particular Verizon tower I was connected to. After some searching I found a site that keeps track of cell phone tower locations ( Link: http://www.cellreception.com/towers/ ) and noticed that I was exactly in the middle of two Verizon towers, and my external antenna was pointing towards one and directly away from the other. So after getting my bearings, I performed the following steps:

1. Turned off unit, pulled battery and SIM for a couple minutes.

2. While unit still off/disassembled, pointed antenna dish to new tower.

3. Reassembled, powered up. No reset of settings was involved.

Sure enough, my usual "EvDO Rev.A" changed to "EvDO Rev.Ae" which I believe to be the second tower. Also sure enough, my connected time just went beyond the 2 hour mark.

So the moral of the story is this: If you are disconnecting every 2 hours (to the second) with the Mifi 4510L, call Verizon and figure out how to connect to a tower that isn't made of FAIL. Optionally, blow a few bucks for a directional antenna. The signal quality improvement is pretty massive (at least it was in my case) and it's ensuring I am connected to the working tower.

John_Getzke
Champion - Level 1

Wonderful feedback!

Thanks for sharing your solution and that website.  I was not aware that there were public websites for the cell phone towers like that.  That website will definitly become useful in the future.

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cwbrent
Newbie

I have not noticed the invalid packet state yet.  When my 4510L was continually kicking me off I got the system log below.

System Log> HTML Version 25.

01/02/12 09:20:57am> Current Time

01/02/12 09:20:49am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:20:46am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:20:04am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:19:55am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:48am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:42am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:17am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:14am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:04am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:18:01am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:17:45am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:17:39am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:17:24am> LTE Out of Dormant State

01/02/12 09:17:22am> LTE in Dormant State

01/02/12 09:16:38am> LTE Out of Dormant State

I saw in one of the other threads that this dormant state was also a problem.  I'm currently trying the MAC filter solution that was suggested.

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