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Gen 5 Compatibility with Mac Sierra

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MarkJFine
Professor

Gen 5 Compatibility with Mac Sierra

Recently upgraded to Gen 5 from Gen 4 (05 May) and am seeing some things that seem to be isolated to usage with MacOs Sierra.

 

1. Data usage appears to be a lot higher than expected. For example, I downloaded around 100MB of updates this morning, but the usage meter shows I used 350MB. Mac was only thing using the pipe and I waited about 10-15 minutes settling time after bootup to account for startup usage (ClamAV virus definitions, etc.). Difference in usage meter went from 6.50GB before downloads, to 6.85GB after downloads. Sorry, but I forgot to take screen shots of the usage meter.

 

2. Download speeds appear to be capped to around 12.3Mbps or less as measured in iStat - roughly half what's expected. There are little to few interruptions or even variations in the data stream, but I expect that being in Hughes' configuration for initial setups.

 

I see no high usage from other devices when I isolate them (e.g, TV, XBox, DirecTV boxes, or even iPhone/iPads), just Macs (we have 2 of them). I also have no way to measure speed on those other devices, but they appear to be ok for simple traffic within apps.

 

I seem to remember there was a problem previously with Macs on Gen4 that ultimately was resolved. Unfortunately I can't find the discussion of how it was solved in the new community system.

 

That said, I seem to recall it was something to do with the way packets were acknowledged (or their timing) in MacOS that caused multiple packet sends. This would seem to appear to cause higher data usage while resulting in lower throughput speed. Perhaps this problem crept back into Gen 5 software? - just guessing at this point.

 

Other than this, it seems to operating fine (other than the very occasional DNS error).

 

If Liz or Amanda could help me with diagnosing this that would be great.

 

Mark


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.
30 REPLIES 30
MarkJFine
Professor

Follow-up:
Not sure why it never occurred to me to try using the HT2000W's built-in router instead of the external Linksys EA4500 that I had been using. Doing that certainly resolved the speed issue! Smiley Surprised
Will continue to test to see if it solves the data usage issue as well.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.
maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

Mark, that's cool that you were able to resolve the speed issue!  I had wanted to say that I experience no big differences between operating systems, though the Mac (with Sierra) seems a skosh faster than Windows.

Thanks maratsade. I actually saw a contiguous download stream hit around 50Mbps, but don't tell anyone at Hughes, 'cause they'll take it away from me. lol. Seriosuly though, Gen5 speed is quite impressive when it kicks in.

 

As a result, I've gone through and moved everything over to the internal router with the exception of an ancient game adapter I'd been using as the access point for one of my DirecTV boxes. It's not terribly compatible with WPA/WPA2 and TKIP/AES. Replacing that as soon as possible.

 

The downside of having the higher speed is that the data leakage can now slip by so fast you don't notice it if you're not looking. Usage jumped by 1GB in under 15 minutes around noontime according to the HughesNet iOS app (for me, it's more accurate and timely than the Usage Meter), so still trying to isolate that problem. Can't pinpoint when it occurred, so I can't correlate it back to an event that makes much sense.

 

Bottom line, it's most likely not the Sierra compatibility thing I thought it was. Something else is clearly going on.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.
maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV


Wow. I clocked 75Mbps once for a couple of minutes, but my speeds are much slower in general, though they do measure higher than Gen 4.

 

"Usage jumped by 1GB in under 15 minutes around noontime according to the HughesNet iOS app"

 

Yikes. Something's gobbling up data, for sure. Do you have any idea how you're going to catch the culprit?

The process of elimination procedure they recommend here is probably the best one: turn things off for a day and see if it does or doesn't happen again. I may have to modify that slightly by doing it in 'zones' to narrow it down, otherwise it'll take a lot longer than I have bandwidth for with all the devices I have hanging off this.

 

That procedure will only work if it's an issue with something intentionally 'phoning home' on its own. It could be something completely different from that, as I'm seeing a few uplink errors in the high-level diagnostic display. Can't quantify it though, since users can no longer can see the detailed diagnostic reports on these newer devices.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.

Not sure if this will help or not, but I had a similar "data loss" using my MacBook Pro after upgrading to Sierra.  Though I am not currently on Gen5 (waiting for my electrician to wire the copper conductor coax then to Gen5), I was getting a massive data loss around mid-day and I isolated it to my Mac.  On advice from my son (who worked for Apple), I turned off "Find My Mac" and the data loss stopped.  Turns out that Apple initiates communication with your system which moves lots of data up to Apple to support that feature.  I am also assuming you are not using iCloud Drive daily which can also cause massive data transfers depending on your set-up. 

 

Good luck and keep us Mac users up-to-date on what you find.

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

Cheers cybercycle1... completely forgot about that.

Turns out "Find My..."was turned on my iPhone and 2 iPads but not my two MBPs. So, that could have definitely contributed. All of those are now turned off.

Have also taken to looking at the Activity Monitor on both MBPs to look for Data Received spikes under "Network" to try and isolate those. One machine was on all day and didn't register anything close to a 1GB, so that's good to know. Forgot to check the other before it was turned off.

We only use iCloud for the simple things like notes, calendars, reminders and contacts. No drive, photos, backups or anything (and especially not keychain).


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.

Happy you are narrowing down your data drain.  Turning the "Find My MacBook" (or an IOS device) off will stop a lot of that hidden data drain.  Other features to consider turning off are "Background App Refresh", "Share iPhone Analytics" (sends data to Apple), and limiting the number of Apps and Contacts that you share your location...under Privacy/Location Services.

 

Seems that when we upgrade the OS/OIS, Apple turns these features back on.  It can take a bit of time to track them down and turn them off...keeping a check-list helps too.

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

I almost forgot to mention that the latest iOS update (Ver: 10.3.1) has a feature that will switch ON your iPhone's WiFi if it cannot connect a call using just your phone service provider's connection.  Once done, your WiFi stays on even after the call is completed.  Unless you see the WiFi icon on your iPhone screen, you won't know that you are now potentially using your WiFi data bandwidth instead of your phone's data plan.  I don't know of a way to turn that feature off, but I learned that it was done to provide 911 calling in weak signal strength areas...assuming there is WiFi available.  Looks like just one more thing to check...it has happened to me several times since upgrading my iOS.

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

Yup. I've had most of those things turned off, especially the background refresh. I only use that for things that I need to use in the background, such as Runkeeper and other excercise trackers, and some music/podcast players that I use while I run. Everything else I also ensure are not even loaded by swiping it out of the background.

Good to know about the wifi calls too, since cell service in my area is real spotty.

As for the leaks themselves, so far so good. Not to jinx myself, but have only used ~250MB today with no unexpected surprises. It could very well have been the four devices phoning home to Apple all along, but I'm still waiting to see what happens when some other devices are used to rule that in as the solution.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.
maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV


@cybercycle1 wrote:

Happy you are narrowing down your data drain.  Turning the "Find My MacBook" (or an IOS device) off will stop a lot of that hidden data drain.  Other features to consider turning off are "Background App Refresh", "Share iPhone Analytics" (sends data to Apple), and limiting the number of Apps and Contacts that you share your location...under Privacy/Location Services.

 

Seems that when we upgrade the OS/OIS, Apple turns these features back on.  It can take a bit of time to track them down and turn them off...keeping a check-list helps too.


I keep the "Find my iPhone" utility turned on because I think it's very helpful -- I haven't noticed huge data drains on that.  I keep the background app refresh turned off because it eats battery.  I turned off location services for a lot of them too, also to save battery.  I keep some on though because they're actually quite helpful at times. 

 

I will have to be more vigilant about checking whether sneaky Apple has turned them back on, though.  I've noticed Microsoft also reverses settings when it updates.  I hate that.

GabeU - For MacOS, the Network section of Activity Monitor (Applications/Utilities) is a great tool to see what running applications are using what bandwidth, as well as how much has been used since boot. Good for isolating it from everything else. It's actually how I determined the big 1GB leak wasn't coming from my machine. iOS devices have something similar, but only for cellular bandwidth (Settings/Cellular), so a little harder to detect.

maratsade - Yes, it is frustrating when they change your settings. Apple not only reset the settings to default in the latest rendition of iOS 10, they actually moved "Find my..." when they moved the iCloud settings under your name at the top (in addition to Privacy->Location Services). This makes it that much harder to even find it to turn it back off.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.
GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV

@MarkJFine

 

I agree that the Network section of the Activity Monitor is a very good tool for the Mac OS, and I've been recommending that to people with Macs, as it's really the only thing I could find for Macs that could help in determining data usage.  

 

But, as you inadvertently alluded to, it has a weakness, and that's the fact that it starts anew when it's rebooted.  It sure can help, as is evidence by your experience in using it, but for a long term, slow burn problem it surely lacks.  

 

It's too bad that Apple doesn't give the ability to monitor data usage long term with it.  Perhaps, in the future, they will change it so one can do so.  

   


Ryzen 5 3400G | MSI B450M Pro-M2 MAX | 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4 3000 | XPG SX8200 Pro 512GB NVMe | Windows 10 Pro

Just to add a point of reference for the native Apple Activity Monitor, here is a link to their Support Document:

 

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201464

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

@GabeU- Very true. There should be a way to rotate access logs for these things like you have in Linux (which MacOS is based upon). And, just to add to this thought, MacOS has several crons that it kicks off for maintenance purposes where things just start and end on a regular schedule. Some may use internet bandwidth that gets zeroed out in the top part of the display after the process ends so you have no idea how it's been added to the total data received in the bottom part - just that something "happened".

 

Another Apple-ism that I'm thinking about this morning are dealing with app updates on the various iDevices we have. At some point iOS decided it wasn't going to allow users to copy apps that was originally downloaded/installed on their iDevice back to their computer's iTunes repository during a sync. This is problematic because say you installed an app on your iPhone that you now want on your iPad, and the provider (stupidly, imo) updates that 200MB app on a weekly basis (looking at you, LinkedIn). This becomes a 600MB update as you are now independently having to download it once on your computer, once on your iPhone, and another time on your iPad.

 

The ultimate solution is to refrain from doing anything with app maintenance on either iDevice. This way you just update it once on your computer then regularly sync it to your iPhone and iPad so you're not wasting bandwidth. Even if you've used your phone's new unlimited LTE to download it, you still don't have a copy of it on your computer's repository, so you end up having to download it again ayway - still wasteful. Been trying to get my wife used to this procedure to no avail and have just spent about 5GB of Bonus allocation to fixing some of this.

 

Except, I just found this out today... A word of caution if there is an app (or apps) on your iDevice that isn't also on your computer and you download it/them to your computer to try to do a "bulk sync": This might not initially work until you physically tell iTunes to update each specific app on that device. Just to make this process even more annoying, you have to connect the device, go into that device's application list in iTunes on your computer, and click "Update" for each of these silly things that you just downloaded, then hit Apply - it won't be done automatically by just hitting Sync from the Summary.

 

Remains to be seen if this is just a one-time thing or this persists ad nauseum.

If this isn't the most painful thing ever...


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.

Ok, so after disabling "Find my..." on several devices (as well as a few other adjustments) the big drops in data have stopped. It's all pretty much manageable again.

 

Only a couple of other weirdness items still (e.g., several hard reboots to get the 2000W's internal wifi routers working properly and why I see several transmission errors a day), but those are another topic and not nearly as critical.

 

Thanks all.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.


@MarkJFine wrote:

Ok, so after disabling "Find my..." on several devices (as well as a few other adjustments) the big drops in data have stopped. It's all pretty much manageable again.

 

Only a couple of other weirdness items still (e.g., several hard reboots to get the 2000W's internal wifi routers working properly and why I see several transmission errors a day), but those are another topic and not nearly as critical.

 

Thanks all.


Happy to see things are getting back to normal.  My Gen5 will be hooked up next week and I'll start the process of learning its kwerks and fixes.  So, I'm guessing I'll probably be seeing you down the road as I get the 2000W set up and working with my Mac's, and I can't wait to see what fun my Sono's subnet system will have with the HN modem.

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

@cybercycle1- Yeah it would be interesting as I'm seeing the 5GHz router is quite a bit sensitive. The range is fairly good, but it likes to disappear at the slightest fluctuation. Disappear, as in not just signal-wise - literally just goes away, and sometimes takes the 2.4GHz router with it. I'm also experiencing it getting jammed everyonce in a while. If you already have a 1000Mb 5GHz router that does 802.11n/ac, you might want to go with that.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.


@MarkJFine wrote:

@cybercycle1- Yeah it would be interesting as I'm seeing the 5GHz router is quite a bit sensitive. The range is fairly good, but it likes to disappear at the slightest fluctuation. Disappear, as in not just signal-wise - literally just goes away, and sometimes takes the 2.4GHz router with it. I'm also experiencing it getting jammed everyonce in a while. If you already have a 1000Mb 5GHz router that does 802.11n/ac, you might want to go with that.


Thanks for the suggestion and your observations with the HN router.  I'll probably start with disabling the HN router's SSID and use my current Airport Extreme as long as I can still pass my subnet router through to the HN router's ethernet connection.  That should avoid some of the issues generated by the HN equipment, but I'll find out soon enough.  I'll post my results as I go along... 

____________________________
U.S. Air Force 1967 - 1972

Incidentally, I'm still investigating data draw to see where most of it is coming from. For example, I used to leave Slack and TweetDeck running continuously as they used to run very lean - maybe 100MB/day if I was lucky.

 

I stopped using the Slack app after I saw it suck down half a gig in one shot once and the Slack tech staff were unable to figure out why. That's been relegated to the web version which has very little draw, maybe a 1MB/hr or so.

 

As for TweetDeck, not sure when that became such a data hog, but it seems to do with the images. Could have been when Twitter reduced the limitation on image size. Startup was around 6MB between inital code download (it's web-based app so you essentially download the functional code every time you start it) and column images. I use 9 columns between personal and the accounts I use to support an Arsenal-based website (free plug for the Daily Cannon). Found that hiding attached media for each tweet reduces the data drain significantly - as in a factor of ten.

 

I don't use Facebook, but my wife does and I'd wished she didn't. I've had her make autostarting of videos stop, which they conveniently move around so you can't find that option. It still is a huge data drain, but... one thing at a time.


* Disclaimer: I am a HughesNet customer and not a HughesNet employee. All of my comments are my own and do not necessarily represent HughesNet in any way.