[BUG] Sailfish OS Wi-Fi / Internet connecton *not* working in some countries

asked 2019-06-06 06:18:19 +0300

jimjamz gravatar image

updated 2019-06-13 04:03:26 +0300

Following on from the first symptoms identified in this post I have finally concluded that there is some issue with the Wi-FI / Internet connection on Xperia X in some countries only when using Sailfish OS. I first witnessed this issue upon arriving in the Asia Pacific countries. Everything was working fine before I departed my home European country. The Sailfish OS version at that time was 3.0.2 Oulanka. I have since re-flashed fresh images of and Hossa, and still the problem occurs.

The problems identified are:

  • Unable to browse to any websites with the Sailfish Browser.
  • Unable to download apps from the Jolla Store.
  • Unable to use any other store
  • Jolla apps (e.g. Weather) will not connect to the Internet to update or fetch related data.
  • After fresh installs, the Jolla apps cannot be installed because they cannot be downloaded from the Jolla store.

Basically, the issue is with any kind of Internet activity over the Wi-Fi network. I can establish a connection to the Wi-Fi networks without any problem, but no connection to the Internet. In some rare cases, there will be some extremely weak Internet activity where, for example, the browser may load some webpage elements but not entirely. This weak connection usually lasts no more than 90 seconds before it completely ceases and results in network connection timeouts. Another example is the Jolla Store app being able to fetch the description of another app, but not be able to download it. I'm not using a VPN or proxy of any kind.

I've tried multiple Wi-Fi networks - at home and at work where I have access and control of the router configuration. I've also tried public networks - at the gym, in bars and at restaurants; all at different locations, all with the same result. Wi-Fi connection is established, but no connection to the Internet. At first, I suspected damage to the wireless hardware in the Xperia X, but that's not possible if it connects successfully to the router. The Internet connection is the issue. My other devices (laptop, Android phone) connect to the Internet without issue.

I have just reverted the Xperia X back to the latest Android 8.1 image using the Emma Tool on a Windows PC. As soon as I connect to the same Wi-Fi networks as before, the Internet connection works, is stable and super fast. Chrome browser has no problem with any website, nor does any other browser (Firefox) or store (Aptoide, F-Droid), which I also happened to be using (and having trouble with) in Sailfish.

How can this possibly be? I have never heard of such an issue. The network environments and hardware all remain the same. The only thing I've changed is the device OS. I can't even explain the theory behind why this wouldn't work, unless ...

All Wi-Fi / Internet data sent/received via the Xperia X on Sailfish OS is passing through some server (Jolla?) first before being sent to its destination. As a potential Jolla server is likely to be located in Scandinavia, that would explain the extremely high latency and connection timeouts I receive on the rare occasions I receive a weak Internet connection for the short time period (max. 90 seconds). It also supports why I do not have any such problems with the original Android image being restored to the device, as there's no Jolla services present.

But surely, this couldn't be?

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@jimjamz my wifi at home works. your description is a little bit confused
Do you mean wifi public hotspots ? => https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotspot_(Wi-Fi)
In which country are you ? or you observe it? with private wifi or public hotspots

cemoi71 ( 2019-06-12 00:46:44 +0300 )edit

I'm currently travelling the Asia Pacific region for work. Not just public Wi-Fi networks (bars restaurants), but home and work Wi-Fi networks where I have access to the router configuration.

In a nutshell, using Sailfish, I can connect to the Wi-Fi networks here but there is no connection to the Internet in 95% of cases. In the remaining 5%, there will be a Wi-Fi connection for approximately 90 seconds or so where the connection is extremely slow/unstable (perhaps some text of a web page is returned but not enough bandwidth to return either the CSS or images) before it ceases completely. Reverting to the original Android image resolves this problen. No Wi-Fi or Internet connection problems of any kind. The bandwidth is super fast.

jimjamz ( 2019-06-13 03:28:17 +0300 )edit

Updated the original post so it reads better. I didn't put enough emphasis on the issue being with the Internet connection being the problem, rather than the Wi-Fi connection being the problem.

jimjamz ( 2019-06-13 04:04:52 +0300 )edit