Using WPA-TKIP security on router - Reconnects every few hours

By Noam
Dec 9, 2007
  1. Hi, I have a not-so-well-known-brand router, and I don't think its brand really matters here.
    I have WPA TKIP security enabled for it, so whenever I want to get connected wirelessly I just enter the password I specified and I'm connected. After the first time it just connects automatically.
    I have one problem, though. Every few hours (I'm going to guess 18, you'll soon know why) the computer I'm using to connect to it wirelessly disconnects, and then reconnects a bit later. This is bad for me.

    I looked into the security section in my router's control panel, and I saw "Group Key Renewal" and "Idle Timeout" as two other settings in my WPA-TKIP configuration.
    The "Idle Timeout" one limits me to specify 120-65535 seconds, and "Group Key Renewal" doesn't seem to limit me at all.
    Group Key Renewal let me enter 65535 and 65536, too, but once I try higher numbers, even 90000, it gives me an error and I have to stick with ~65535 seconds. That's about 18 hours.

    I'm not sure if this whole Renewal and Idle Timeout is related to my reconnections, but it's my best guess.

    Edit: Now I see the disconnect-reconnect thing happens every 3-4 hours too. Anybody know what could be causing it?

    Sorry if this was too long...

    Thank you very much in advance. I really appreciate it.
  2. Ididmyc600

    Ididmyc600 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,415


    Set it to use WEP as opposed to WPA_TKIP and change the channel as well then see how you go with it.

  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,156   +598

    let's move the question: WHY is an 18 hour interval a problem? Do you really
    need 24/7 connections via wireless?

    Review common usage of Ethernet connectivity:
    1. LAN systems have historically been hardwared (yea we all know the expense abd mess)
    2. Portable devices have lead to a need for temporary wireless connectivity
    The wireless devices all represent security issues to the network owner and
    thus gave rise to WEP/WPA/WPA2/WPA_TKIP. An adjunct to temporary wireless connectivity is to enforce 'temporary' via connection time limits.

    Yea, at home it sure is nice to avoid the wiring and the mess (makes the wife happy too :) ), but 24/7 wireless connectivity is a an oxymoron.
  4. Noam

    Noam TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    Thank you, both of you.
    jobeard, looks like I really should wire this connection. :) Has to be the best option here, seeing as I need a 24/7 connection and wiring it really isn't a problem.
    Ididmyc600, I'll keep that in mind for future reference when working wireless.
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,156   +598

    some background info on encryption techniques

    WEP vs WPA:

    is the most universal encryption technique AND works even when the
    brand name of the router is not the same as the WiFi adapter​

    WPA and others:
    are more secure, but sometimes fail to connect, and need
    driver and firmware updates and even then sometimes fail.​
  6. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,383   +105

    Use WEP 128 Char Key...
  7. Noam

    Noam TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    Thanks again.
    I'm thinking maybe go WEP to cut down on connection problems, but on the other hand I heard that WEP can be cracked pretty easily.
    I'll think it over, but for now I think my best option would be to get a wired connection in that specific spot.
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