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Kolhell
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Joined: 16 May 2011
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:02 pm    Post subject: intermittent Bluetooth issues Reply with quote

I've got a Bluetooth card in my laptop that sporadically does not work. I'm about ready to blame the hardware, but it's a combination wifi card and the wifi has no issues.

I use PulseAudio and BlueZ.

This is not a issue with a soft or hard switch.

rfkill has never listed it blocked
Code:
# rfkill list
0: phy0: Wireless LAN
   Soft blocked: no
   Hard blocked: no
1: hci0: Bluetooth
   Soft blocked: no
   Hard blocked: no



Here is an example of when things work:
Code:
$ bluetoothctl
[NEW] Controller F4:B7:E2:A0:A8:B2 Nights [default]
[NEW] Device D0:8A:55:08:D8:B4 Shrapnel
[NEW] Device E9:08:EF:FF:0D:12 BWA17AV004
Agent registered

and the dmesg output of a "good" boot
https://paste.pound-python.org/show/LoZWxIV5SiwxT8TjsNOX/

For a while, anyway... as sometimes it will stop (append to previous dmesg output)
Code:
[  293.015145] usb 1-1.3: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[  660.450174] kworker/dying (951) used greatest stack depth: 12400 bytes left
[ 3854.443166] Bluetooth: hci0 command 0x0c56 tx timeout
[ 3856.491167] Bluetooth: hci0 command 0x0c45 tx timeout
[ 3858.539148] Bluetooth: hci0 command 0x0c58 tx timeout
[ 3860.587184] Bluetooth: hci0 command 0x1004 tx timeout
after which point
Code:
$ bluetoothctl
[NEW] Controller F4:B7:E2:A0:A8:B2 Nights [default]
[NEW] Device D0:8A:55:08:D8:B4 Shrapnel
[NEW] Device E9:08:EF:FF:0D:12 BWA17AV004
Agent registered
[bluetooth]# power on
Failed to set power on: org.bluez.Error.Failed

which appears to be a timeout (though this does not generate anything in dmesg)

Here's an lsusb -v from this instance (where it worked for an hour then threw the tx timeout errors)
https://paste.pound-python.org/show/Q55vhodZiRBYhWkjuVzA/



Sometimes it straight won't work, won't list hci0 in rfkill list, and gives this in bluetoothctl
Code:
$ bluetoothctl
Agent registered
[bluetooth]# power on
No default controller available

Here is a dmesg from a boot of that sort
https://paste.pound-python.org/show/XLjxEiXa52QFT9dCbnZS/
which I find funny because there are no hci0 timeout errors (which really seem to be independent of this working, as I've seen dmesg throw a hci0 timeout error during boot then had bt work without issues)

Here's an lsusb -v from this instance:
https://paste.pound-python.org/show/OVrtXD69QXnJh6gXRvH4/



I have taken the laptop (a Dell Inspiron 15-3521) apart, cleaned out the dust, and made sure everything is seated properly.

I have no idea what's going on.
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VinzC
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Joined: 17 Apr 2004
Posts: 4864
Location: Dark side of the mood

PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've had a similar issue with my Dell Latitude E6540, the wireless card would sporadically connect to wireless networks... or not. It was until I decided to order a new wireless adapter from Dell *and* I tried my wireless adapter in another laptop that had the very same issue with its (WLAN/BT combo card) that I understood the problem was most probably contact oxidation of some sort.

Simply removing the WLAN/BT adapter from its socket and placing it back again after I carefully sanded the contacts on the wireless board (very, very, VERY softly) with a fine grained sand paper did make it work again. You might try this, costs nothing.

FYI the contacts for the wireless adapter are like pogo pins, just that (I suspect) only the tip of the connector makes contact with the pads on the board, which leads to improper contact when oxidation occurs. I suspect the cheapo connector on the motherboard is really crappy as I noticed a lot of computers do have that problem, which I solved in 100% cases I had to deal with.

When Bluetooth and WLAN are on separate adapters, the connector on the Bluetooth adapter is of a different kind and contacts are much tighter. Hence what I described is only valid with wireless adapters that combine Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
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Kolhell
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Joined: 16 May 2011
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kinda forgot to check back on this post. Whups XD

Thanks for the tips, VinzC: that sounds extremely plausible with some of the behaviours I've noticed (once or twice I've set the laptop down and lost contact with BT after bumping the table). I was leaning towards blaming the hardware, but I'm always hesitant to jump to that conclusion.
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