M2/M1 MacBook Having Wi-Fi Issues? This Workaround Helps

Dec 12, 2022 - 2 Comments

MacBook Air with M2

Some M2 MacBook Air and M1 MacBook Pro and Air users have been experiencing wi-fi difficulties with the latest versions of MacOS Ventura and MacOS Monterey. While we have covered wi-fi issues with MacOS Ventura that have been experienced by some users and offered some solutions, another potential fix is available for a particular use case with Macs having wi-fi problems when in busy network environments, like when on enterprise, corporate, or school networks.

By disabling AWDL, you may be able to improve wi-fi speeds and connectivity on M2 MacBook Air, M1 MacBook Pro, M1 MacBook Air, and M1 Pro/Max MacBook Pro machines.

Fix Wi-Fi Issues with M2 & M1 Macs by Disabling AWDL

Open the Terminal application, either from Spotlight by hitting Command+Spacebar and typing “Terminal” and hitting return, or by navigating to it within the Utilities folder.

Enter the following command string exactly:

sudo ifconfig awdl0 down

Hit return, and authenticate with the admin password.

This problem has been tracked by UCLA who mentions that Apple has a solution available coming in MacOS Ventura 13.1 and an update to Monterey, while meter offers the aforementioned solution to disable AWDL using the command line ifconfig networking tool.

Meter describes AWDL and the issue with MacOS wi-fi as follows:

“AWDL (Apple Wireless Direct Link) is a low latency/high speed WiFi for peer-to-peer connection. macOS Yosemite and above utilizes AWDL to handle data transfers to other AWDL-enabled devices (Macs, Macbooks, iPhones, etc.) over the WiFi Radio, without the need for a common underlying Access Point.

However, whenever AWDL is active (Bonjour discovery and any Airdrop, Airplay, and GameKit links and transfers), it will lock the WiFi radio for small intervals. For Bonjour discovery specifically, this comes to an effective packet spooling time of about 50-100ms, once per second (active transfers will be higher). This will create latency spikes and for some applications, this latency is unacceptable.

This functionality is causing severe WiFi issues on M1/M2 Macbook Pros.”

Because this appears to be a bug, if you’re experiencing wi-fi issues on your M1 or M2 MacBook Pro or Air, be sure to keep an eye out for system software updates as they become available.

Cheers to 9to5Mac for bringing this to wider attention.

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Related articles:

Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Mac OS, Tips & Tricks, Troubleshooting

2 Comments

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  1. John says:

    Apple has had WiFi issues on their Mac’s for a long time. It’s hard to say if this is a driver issue or a hardware problem or both. Trouble is with the Apple silicon Macs your hardware is all soldered to the main board. Not many external options for WiFi dongles either. Kind of important to get WiFi fixed.

  2. Aff says:

    Thank you so much!
    I have tried every 2G/5G channel , width , setting on two different AP’s and was desperate with the spikes 100-200 ms every now and then.

    Turned that thing off and the AirDrop of my iPhone and it is now all cool!

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