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  1. #1

    Default Sonos wi-fi signal

    Hi Guys

    I see from some posts that some of you use wi-spy to help you with Sonos installations.

    I have a personal Sonos system and am trying to diagnose some wifi interference problems.

    I've used inSSIDer on a couple of laptops but it doesn't detect the SonosNet mesh network. The only time it does pick up a Sonos wifi signal is when the controller is woken up. But if the controller goes to sleep and music is still left playing inSSIDer doesn't detect the SonosNet signal.

    Firstly, does Wi-Spy detect the SonosNet ?

    If so I was wondering if any of you could kindly confirm the following.

    1. If the whole Sonos system is in a sleep mode (i.e. no music playing) does it still transmit a wifi signal. Is it a constant signal or a pulse every hour or so.
    2. If the Sonos Zoneplayers are wired, do they still transmit a wifi signal. Again, is it constant or a pulse.

    Any help greatly appreciated.

  2. Default

    Thank you for the question, I know someone that might be able to confirm this. I don't have a sonos player myself and only have seen a few captures.

    The Wi-Spy will detect the transmissions in the form of decibel readings, it will not detect or identify "SonosNet." All that means is that you will be able to see where the Sonos is in the spectrum and how often it is transmitting.

    I assume when the Sonos is asleep it may perform a few packet transmissions but it is very unlikely it would transmit anything that would cause issues with anything else.

    I'll see if I can get a response from my friend.

  3. #3

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    Thanks for the reply Trent and for your help.

    I look forward to hearing what you find out.

  4. #4

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    Blake here, aka Trent's friend! I have about 12 zone players, 3 controllers, and their ipod dock in my house.

    Sonos is based off of standard 2.4GHz 802.11g (ZP100, ZP80, CR100, BR100) or 2.4GHz 802.11n (ZP90,ZP120,PLAY:3,PLAY:5,CR200) and creates their own mesh network using basically WPA2 PSK. Because they do things slightly out of spec most devices don't detect it other than decibel readings like Trent mentioned. If you are using Cognio for example you will see the devices as STA with their MAC (00:0e I think) in the list, but it is not detected as "SonosNet."

    As to your questions:
    1. It is a constant signal, the devices are always interconnected as long as their is power. Only the CR100 / CR200 controllers join the SonosNet when needed and sleep otherwise.
    2. Wired does not disable wireless, many retailers were finding this out the hard way when they brought in the product to sell. Sonos uses STP to determine if it should use wireless or wired and disables accordingly as to avoid loops on your network.

    Here's some fun links to use when troubleshooting/investigating Sonos products:

    http://<ZONE PLAYER IP>:1400/support/review
    Look at the network matrix to see how things are connected, then click on one of the ZonePlayers in the list and look for /usr/sbin/brctl showstp br0 which will link to the current STP state for that player.

    http://<ZONE PLAYER IP>:1400/status

    Hope that helps answer your questions!

  5. #5

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    Thanks very much for taking the time to reply to answer my queries.

    I'm glad I asked on here as I posted a similar question on the Sonos forums and a moderator there said that the zone players turn their wireless off when not in use except for a beacon signal, and also turn it off when zone players are wired. I had my doubts about this and hence my post on metageek.

    One other question, does Wi-Spy show the wifi signal broadcasted by the Sonos units ?

    Thanks again.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dr.phibes View Post
    Thanks very much for taking the time to reply to answer my queries.

    I'm glad I asked on here as I posted a similar question on the Sonos forums and a moderator there said that the zone players turn their wireless off when not in use except for a beacon signal, and also turn it off when zone players are wired. I had my doubts about this and hence my post on metageek.

    One other question, does Wi-Spy show the wifi signal broadcasted by the Sonos units ?

    Thanks again.

    buzz has a tendency to be mistaken on how wireless works, hence his confusion over there. I've stopped posting for the most part on forums cause I got tired of trying to explain how RF works. They all thought that once SonosNet 2.0 was created their ranges would double, ugh, that was fun!

    The last I've heard the wireless is still enabled, even when wired. Ultimately the ZPs will develop the best path to/from each other, which might be wireless.

    You will only see the wifi signal as noise on the graphs, but it should be very minimal. The devices actually behave themselves quite nicely. I've only had them cause issues once, and that was when they were rebroadcasting a chatty multicast device (Linksys IP camera).

    are you having issues with your Sonos system?

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