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5 months, a dozen calls, and Nest 3-pack + Google 2-pack still drops clients randomly

Community Specialist
Community Specialist

Disclaimer: This thread was migrated from our previous version of the Google Nest Community. You can continue to receive updates on your thread issue here or simply ask, browse or more in the new Google Nest Community.
Original Poster: Barry Allard 


1. Google Fiber box (guest bedroom) <--WAN--> Nest Router
                                                                                    <--LAN--> Philips Hue Bridge  
2. Nest Point 1 (kitchen near living room)
3. Nest Point 2 (kitchen near bedrooms)
4. Google Point 1 (living room) <--LAN--> Marantz NR1711 Receiver
5. Google Point 2 (master bedroom)
Normally, there are ~57 clients. Right now, only ~35 are reconfigured to work on the changed SSID.

It looks like a problem with the Nest router's DHCP server intermittently not sending OFFER packets in response to valid DISCOVERY broadcasts because the multitude of devices (Amazon Echo Show 8, iPad Pro 10.5", Mac mini, iRobot Braava) works fine everywhere else all of the time.

(There's no rogue DHCP servers on any clients.)
I've done the jiggle-the-cord, hard reset, and disable some points rain dancing already. Replacing them, as I've been waiting for over a week for higher-tier support to approve, is unlikely to fix this if it's a software issue common to the product line.
What I need is a fix ASAP or a full refund on product without fitness for a particular purpose so I can purchase a mesh that works properly.
Right now, they're paperweights.

Community Specialist
Community Specialist
Hello Barry Allard,
I almost hesitate to jump in here, since you already have a case in progress with Google. But, I will try to ask a few questions in case it might shed light on the situation. Can you describe the physical layout of all of the nodes (not the clients – just the Google / Nest WiFi gear)? The optimal configuration has the primary (your Nest WiFi Router) as close to the center of the house as possible, with secondaries (Nest WiFi Point and Google WiFi units) one or two rooms away from there, where they will provide 2.4GHz and 5GHz coverage to nearby and more distant clients. They need to be close enough to get a strong 5GHz connection for themselves, and 5GHz doesn't go as far as 2.4GHz does. There's a really long and somewhat complex discussion we can also have about multi-hop topologies here, but the short version is: don't try to make that happen. Just don't. Follow the placement advice.
You may also find you have more secondaries than you really need. Once you've placed them optimally, you may find that four secondaries are really too close together. For example, I noticed you said you had two in the kitchen, which makes me suspect you may have more than required. Having too many secondaries can result in some strange behavior. So, maybe turn some of those off and see if things improve.
I would also suggest running a mesh test in the Google Home app. You really want all of the secondaries to show a "great" mesh connection quality. If any of them are marginal, they will still attract nearby clients, but will then struggle to carry that traffic.
Why am I harping on physical layer issues when you're seeing problems with DHCP? Because DHCP broadcast packets (like DISCOVER and REQUEST) are sent using a much more robust physical layer encoding than unicast packets (like OFFER and ACK). So, if the WiFi physical layer isn't solid, you could easily see behavior that looks like missing OFFER packets. Basically, my philosophy is to start at the bottom of the stack and work up from there.
I really don't think this has anything to do with the number of total client devices in your system. Most of what you have is very low traffic, and DHCP itself is extremely low traffic.
Anyway, I hope some of this information proves useful.
-From MichaelP, Gold Product Expert.