Xfinity Wifi - Can't turn it off anymore?

tzl99

n00b
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
49
Hi,
I've had a Comcast/Xfinity plan for about 6 years now as it's our only option in my older neighbourhood for high speed access. I can try 5G connections with T-mobile now. Frontier has only offered DSL up to 30 Mb/s. Ziply is not here. As bad as customer service has been the 3-4 times I've had to call them, I can't complain about the actual connection or speed as I've had few problems and always seem to have the speed that I paid for (often 20% over).

My question now is if the ability to turn off the Xfinity Wifi hotspot, that automatically is setup by their gateways, still possible? Until last spring I had a Technicolor gateway and I could enter the device settings (10.0.0.1) and I used to be able to disable not only my personal Wifi but I could also disable the Xfinity hotspot. I have my own routers and two wireless accesspoints (1st floor/2nd floor).

Two months ago we dropped our TV service and upgraded the net connection to 600/20 (they are VERY asymmetric) mainly to get a faster upload so can stream to my phone when I travel. It works fine now. They gave us a new gateway though it looks and acts identically to my previous Technicolor based gateway. This gateway must have an updated firmware as I can't make any "advanced" changes through the device itself. I have to use their Website or the Xfinity mobile app. On the app and Website, there is an advanced page "internet.xfinity.com/network/advanced-settings" that is supposed to give you control of the hotspot "Xifinity WiFi Hotspot Nework". It gave you the ability to turn it on or off.

When I first set everything up in April I could turn off the hotspot. To be clear I am not talking about the personal WiFi network it tries to install for the user to use as their connection. That I can enable/disable through both the device and App without a problem and it is disabled now. I'm talking about the Xfinity hotspot available to any local xfinity customers. In April I turned it off and it seemed to stay off. Then in May I found it back on again and I could turn it off again.

Now in June it is on again. Whenever I try to turn it off through the App or WWW site, I get a "Let's Try That again" and "Looks like that page didn't load" over and over. Every day after work I test it out and can't ever bring up the page.

So other than buying my own Gateway (maybe I should, I might save $14/month), has anyone else lost the ability to turn off the Hotpot? I have not called customer service because other than billing they have NEVER been helpful and a call typically takes 1-2 hours. Their local store is more helpful, usually, but I haven't had the time to go.

Thanks,
LET

P.S. I want to turn this off mainly on principle. I've use a WiFi analyzer and they are not using either 2.4GHz or 5 GHz bands that my equipment is using. I live in a single family home and my neighbour's networks are all seen but at low power. So I don't think it is interfering with anything. It is blasting at higher WiFi levels than my own equipment though. In the storage room, one end of the 1st floor) where the gateway is located the Wifi analyzer says it is around -30 dB. In the office next room over it is -40. In the entertainment room with the TV around -50. My own APs which are more central in each floor are -40 in the TV room and -50 in the office. I use wired connections in the office though so it doesn't matter. I would just like to turn it off, but my life won't be ruined if I can't and it stays on.

P.S.S. I have some old copper fine mesh(gaps are 1-2 mm across) in the greenhouse and wrapped the Gateway in 3 layers (I wrapped it like a cocoon!) and the signal barely dropped to -40 in the storage room. It is -45-50 in the office and -75 in the TV room. I guess a fine copper mesh doesn't make a "Faraday" cage for the Gateway, lol. It still shows 4 (of 5) green bars in the office on my phone.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
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Mar 22, 2015
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I ran across this a few years back when we lived in the midwest. And as you've noticed, it does actually cause problem because wifi frequencies are shared so them blasting out their signal actually does interfere with yours. Once all our neighbors moved in the apartment complex we were at and all their wifi's were blasting that signal, our wifi speeds dropped to half and their signals were stronger than ours. At the end of the day, the only solution to get the wifi speeds back to where they were when we initially moved in was to just bump up our plan speeds from 150Mbs to 300Mbs., which gave 150Mbs on the wifi again.

I too was initially turning off their hotspot but it was like wack a mole when every so often I turned around and it was on again. Once I needed to install a work vpn router and their gateway wouldn't pass dmz properly to it, I ditched it and went with a straight modem setup. You could also use the bridge mode which makes their gateway a straight modem and it should get rid of their hotspots, but since they're still charging you for it, it makes financial sense to just pick up your own modem.

After we went straight modem, we've never looked back and never dealt with their pesky hidden hotspots again. The end. :D
 

toast0

[H]ard|Gawd
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Jan 26, 2010
Messages
1,808
Just last week, I set up a comcast account for my MIL with a SB6183 bought refurbished for $30, was pretty easy to setup, had to install the xfinity app on my phone to activate it, but it just worked. That one is docsis 3.0 16x4; not sure if that would actually hit 600 mbps down, but it should be fine for the upstream, if they'll let you activate it on your plan? you'd be saving money on the third month. No wifi in the modem means Comcast can't make their hotspot.
 

SamirD

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Just last week, I set up a comcast account for my MIL with a SB6183 bought refurbished for $30, was pretty easy to setup, had to install the xfinity app on my phone to activate it, but it just worked. That one is docsis 3.0 16x4; not sure if that would actually hit 600 mbps down, but it should be fine for the upstream, if they'll let you activate it on your plan? you'd be saving money on the third month. No wifi in the modem means Comcast can't make their hotspot.
So in my experience, the hardware can definitely do it, but it is the isp that limits it by not having a config file set up for it or an incorrect one. More planned obsolescence by big corporations who have the ability to bully their userbase. :mad:

But a used modem like this is perfect. In fact, any used modem will work. I have 2x sb6190, one of which is on comcast and they've both been rock solid. All the 'puma scare' stuff out there on these is fake new imo because I've had these two particular modems linked together running a latency sensitive application across the country (IPsec tunnel and RDP over it) for better part of half a decade now. If there were any real issues with the sb6190, I would have found them. Plus, they both are clean on the dslreports puma bug finder. The good news is because of all the fake news out there, people avoid these modems so they can be even cheaper than the 6183 even though it's capable of even faster speeds (I've topped mine out at 800+ spiking on a 500/50 wow plan). The sb8200 is another good one to get that people don't want anymore since the whole idea of bonding 2x 1Gbps ports at the isp level never even happened and it never will since newer modems are using a 2.5Gbps port. Another bargain at $50 since they were $200 new (suckers too that bought at that price for a tech that never happened).
 

tzl99

n00b
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
49
Hi all,

Thanks everyone for the responses. I think getting my own gateway, new or used, will likely be the only way. Like I said the Xfinity hotspot doesn't seem to interfere with my home network since virtually all my devices are on 5 GHz and on channels 36 or 40, whereas the Xfinity hotspot is blasting on channel 150 or so. The few 2.4 GHz devices I have are either old or low bandwidth using devices. I just want it off if I can do it easily. But as SamirD said it is "whack-a-mole" as it has turned on 3 times in 2 months.

The Xfinity store did say I can buy my own device but just use their site to find a compatible device. I suppose if I get one without any WiFi capability then there is no concern that the hotspot would turn on again. If I buy a device that has WiFi but turn it off, I wonder if they would be able to turn on a hidden hotspot on a customer's own device though?

The only thing that has stopped me from doing so this month is the fear that they might mess with my connection and if I call to complain they'll say they can't help since it isn't their device. That said, I've never actually received "help" from them. I guess I was hoping there would be a "hidden" setting on their Gateway but I guess they've locked it down. I guess they are removing the ability to turn off the hotspot since the WWW site and App don't do so (at least not for me).

Thanks again, I guess I'll be looking into a new device eventually.

LET.
 

toast0

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
1,808
If there were any real issues with the sb6190, I would have found them. Plus, they both are clean on the dslreports puma bug finder.
Oh man, I would have got one of those, but I had heard about the puma issues, and didn't want to touch them. Oh well, my MIL isn't going to need more speed than the 6813 can do (as much as I wanted to order the killer tier internet, just because across town I'm stuck on bonded VDSL2, it would be a waste)
 

GoldenTiger

Fully [H]
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Dec 2, 2004
Messages
24,941
The only thing that has stopped me from doing so this month is the fear that they might mess with my connection and if I call to complain they'll say they can't help since it isn't their device.
That's what getting one on their compatibility list stops them from doing :).
 

philb2

Gawd
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
745
Hi all,

Thanks everyone for the responses. I think getting my own gateway, new or used, will likely be the only way. Like I said the Xfinity hotspot doesn't seem to interfere with my home network since virtually all my devices are on 5 GHz and on channels 36 or 40, whereas the Xfinity hotspot is blasting on channel 150 or so. The few 2.4 GHz devices I have are either old or low bandwidth using devices. I just want it off if I can do it easily. But as SamirD said it is "whack-a-mole" as it has turned on 3 times in 2 months.

The Xfinity store did say I can buy my own device but just use their site to find a compatible device. I suppose if I get one without any WiFi capability then there is no concern that the hotspot would turn on again. If I buy a device that has WiFi but turn it off, I wonder if they would be able to turn on a hidden hotspot on a customer's own device though?

The only thing that has stopped me from doing so this month is the fear that they might mess with my connection and if I call to complain they'll say they can't help since it isn't their device. That said, I've never actually received "help" from them. I guess I was hoping there would be a "hidden" setting on their Gateway but I guess they've locked it down. I guess they are removing the ability to turn off the hotspot since the WWW site and App don't do so (at least not for me).

Thanks again, I guess I'll be looking into a new device eventually.

LET.
Since 2017 I have had my own ARRIS modem, with new model in 2021. No hotspot BS, less money to comcast.

Get your own modem, whatever brand you like that is on Comcast's list. Then set it up and forget it. You will be happy you did.

I have my modem on a UPS, but that's me. My wi-fi router is also on the UPS.
 

techie81

[H]ard for [H]ardware
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Messages
5,843
I've heard that if you use your own modem with comcast you no longer get unlimited data. Is that true?

When my mom had their gateway, I immediately turned off all of the wifi. Didn't really have an issue with it turning back on. Regardless, I loathe comcrap and how keep pushing their crap down your throat.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 22, 2015
Messages
5,428
Hi all,

Thanks everyone for the responses. I think getting my own gateway, new or used, will likely be the only way. Like I said the Xfinity hotspot doesn't seem to interfere with my home network since virtually all my devices are on 5 GHz and on channels 36 or 40, whereas the Xfinity hotspot is blasting on channel 150 or so. The few 2.4 GHz devices I have are either old or low bandwidth using devices. I just want it off if I can do it easily. But as SamirD said it is "whack-a-mole" as it has turned on 3 times in 2 months.

The Xfinity store did say I can buy my own device but just use their site to find a compatible device. I suppose if I get one without any WiFi capability then there is no concern that the hotspot would turn on again. If I buy a device that has WiFi but turn it off, I wonder if they would be able to turn on a hidden hotspot on a customer's own device though?

The only thing that has stopped me from doing so this month is the fear that they might mess with my connection and if I call to complain they'll say they can't help since it isn't their device. That said, I've never actually received "help" from them. I guess I was hoping there would be a "hidden" setting on their Gateway but I guess they've locked it down. I guess they are removing the ability to turn off the hotspot since the WWW site and App don't do so (at least not for me).

Thanks again, I guess I'll be looking into a new device eventually.

LET.
So I can answer the question on buying your own gateway because prior to buying my own modem I tried that route thinking the dmz was somehow not as complete as a customer device--wrong. In short, when you buy a gateway, they control the gateway 100% (hence why on their compatible list), so you're again in the same situation as their gateway except you paid for your own.

You will get finger pointing at some point when you have an issue because 'not their device/your problem', but I have not found this to be the case as much as I thought it would come up as a way to get out of providing service. I think I've only experienced that about 3 times in the last 5yrs+.

This whole experience is so third world that it makes me want to pack up and leave the US where companies are pulling these extortion techniques without end. These completely one-sided agreements are never sustainable hence why companies are re-branding themselves every other year to fool a new set of users. I'm so MF pissed and disappointed in ability of people to live without these type of daily intrusions that go unchecked. I'm guessing I'm in the minority, but I'm hitting my breaking point with stuff like this. Almost want to just disconnect everything from every scummy company that wants their hands in my wallets and life and just be another guy living in a tent somewhere.
 

Kardonxt

2[H]4U
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
3,588
I haven't tried it recently but I suspect putting their gateway into bridge mode still disables their Xfinity wireless network.

May be worth a shot if you already have your own router.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
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Mar 22, 2015
Messages
5,428
I haven't tried it recently but I suspect putting their gateway into bridge mode still disables their Xfinity wireless network.

May be worth a shot if you already have your own router.
It does. But then you're paying $14 (or whatever gouging price it is this month) for renting a modem that you could replace for $30 as mentioned previously in the thread.
 

Kardonxt

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Messages
3,588
It does. But then you're paying $14 (or whatever gouging price it is this month) for renting a modem that you could replace for $30 as mentioned previously in the thread.

True!

I'm sure it's different in different areas but their most recent scam in mine is a 1.2TB data cap that is lifted if you use their gateway or pay an extra $30 for unlimited data. Something for OP to keep in mind.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
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Mar 22, 2015
Messages
5,428
True!

I'm sure it's different in different areas but their most recent scam in mine is a 1.2TB data cap that is lifted if you use their gateway or pay an extra $30 for unlimited data. Something for OP to keep in mind.
Yeah, there's all sorts of variations on this--get the 1Gb plan and it's unlmiited, have their mobile phone plan and they'll give unlimited. Just another way to charge for something others are providing free. Luckily, we have att gigabit available at the same price so moving away from comcast would be easy for us. I only keep it because getting my vpn router to work with att's gateway was a pain in the past and I don't want to have to go through that again.
 

tzl99

n00b
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
49
HI again,

I do believe that bridge mode may turn off their WiFi. Also for me, they care currently charging $14/month for their gateway. So I agree with you guys that say just buy my own gateway from their compatibility list and I'll try to get one with no built in WiFi just in case they can turn that on remotely.

As for the unlimited data part with their gateway, I do NOT have unlimited data though I rent their gateway. I think the top plans at 1+ Gb/s might have unlimited or if I did phone service. I only have their internet plan at 600/20, and it has a 1.2 TB cap monthly. They offered me unlimited at the store for an additional $15/month (which would just about balance out if I return their gateway). In the last 2 years, according to their data, I reached the cap once. Typically we've been around 500-600GB/month and some months less. I guess I need to pump up my rookie numbers! I'll start watching more 4K HDR videos on my old 720p tablet.

Finally, if I had some other high speed options I would at least rotate companies as they usually offer their best deals for new customers. But sadly, though I live 6-8 miles from a large city, my old neighbourhood has only 1 high speed (ie >100 Mbit/s) option for a wired connection. Other than DSL (Iast I checked in 2020 was 30 Mbit) my only other 2 options are T-Mobile 5G to the home and satellite.

Thanks,
LET.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 22, 2015
Messages
5,428
HI again,

I do believe that bridge mode may turn off their WiFi. Also for me, they care currently charging $14/month for their gateway. So I agree with you guys that say just buy my own gateway from their compatibility list and I'll try to get one with no built in WiFi just in case they can turn that on remotely.

As for the unlimited data part with their gateway, I do NOT have unlimited data though I rent their gateway. I think the top plans at 1+ Gb/s might have unlimited or if I did phone service. I only have their internet plan at 600/20, and it has a 1.2 TB cap monthly. They offered me unlimited at the store for an additional $15/month (which would just about balance out if I return their gateway). In the last 2 years, according to their data, I reached the cap once. Typically we've been around 500-600GB/month and some months less. I guess I need to pump up my rookie numbers! I'll start watching more 4K HDR videos on my old 720p tablet.

Finally, if I had some other high speed options I would at least rotate companies as they usually offer their best deals for new customers. But sadly, though I live 6-8 miles from a large city, my old neighbourhood has only 1 high speed (ie >100 Mbit/s) option for a wired connection. Other than DSL (Iast I checked in 2020 was 30 Mbit) my only other 2 options are T-Mobile 5G to the home and satellite.

Thanks,
LET.
Be careful about buying a gateway vs a modem. Generally a gateway will be one with wifi, so they'll be able to have their hidden wifi again. A straight modem will not. And to prepare your network for a straight modem, I would put your current one in bridge mode and make any adjustments to wifi to have the same coverage since you'll be losing the wifi from the gateway unit. You should also see no more hotspot in bridge mode as it's basically just straight modem mode. Once you're satisfied with running this way, get your own modem and go return theirs and enjoy the savings. :)

LOL on the 4k HDR on the 720p tablet. :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:

Yeah, that's the problem in most of the country--you're lucky to have even a single alternative provider moreless a fast one. I'm lucky in that the main site I manage actually has access to two different cable providers and another site has both comcast and att available. I try to get accounts on each isp and run multi-wan when I can, but this isn't always practical.
 

TheSlySyl

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There are way to have unlimited internet through Xfinity, I think for us it required a call or even having to go to a damn Xfinity store in person, but i'm paying a frankly ridiculous $30 a month to have more than 1.2 terabytes on my 1.2Gb/S internet connection with my own SB8200 and router.

Worth it though, frankly, I use closer to 7-8TB a month and they've never once yelled at me for using that much data since we started paying for it.
 

SamirD

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That's a killer price--is that introductory or with discounts for all the hoops they want you to jump through? Or is it just a straight deal?
 

SamirD

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Nope, the $30 unlimited cap removal is normal.
Oh, I thought you meant your service was $30/mo with 1.2Gb/S service and unlimited bandwidth--that would be killer. :) Yeah, here if you're on the gig service, it's automatically unlimited.
 

TheSlySyl

2[H]4U
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Yeah, my total cost per month is $120
Which, yet again, considering how much bandwidth I actually use - I'm fine with.

I mean fuck, I host a media server.
 

SamirD

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Yeah, my total cost per month is $120
Which, yet again, considering how much bandwidth I actually use - I'm fine with.

I mean fuck, I host a media server.
That's solid for the amount of bandwidth and data you're using. To give you a point of reference, I'm paying just over $90 for just 600/15 with whatever the cap is.
 
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