Tuesday, 14 August 2012

How To: Connect Your PS3 To Mac Internet Sharing WiFi

Recently I moved to a new house and had to make changes to the way I set up my network to extend WiFi coverage. Part of the solution I employed was to enable Internet Sharing of the ethernet connection on my Mac Mini so other devices could use it as a WiFi connection point.

My Mac Mini is still running OS X 10.6.8 so I had to solve the problems of connecting non-Apple devices to a Mac using WEP. Even when I had other devices connecting, I couldn't get my Playstation 3 to connect. Thankfully the PS3 connection test gives some specific indicators of what is failing, so I could see that the problem was related to getting an IP Address assigned.

When you enable Internet Sharing on your Mac a file is created at /etc/bootpd.plist which should contain something like this:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
<dict>
  <key>Subnets</key>
  <array>
    <dict>
      <key>_creator</key>
      <string>com.apple.nat</string>
      <key>allocate</key>
      <true/>
      <key>dhcp_domain_name_server</key>
      <string>192.168.2.1</string>
      <key>dhcp_router</key>
      <string>192.168.2.1</string>
      <key>lease_max</key>
      <integer>86400</integer>
      <key>lease_min</key>
      <integer>86400</integer>
      <key>name</key>
      <string>192.168.2</string>
      <key>net_address</key>
      <string>192.168.2.0</string>
      <key>net_mask</key>
      <string>255.255.255.0</string>
      <key>net_range</key>
      <array>
        <string>192.168.2.2</string>
        <string>192.168.2.254</string>
      </array>
    </dict>
  </array>
  <key>bootp_enabled</key>
  <false/>
  <key>detect_other_dhcp_server</key>
  <integer>1</integer>
  <key>dhcp_enabled</key>
  <array>
    <string>en0</string>
  </array>
  <key>reply_threshold_seconds</key>
  <integer>4</integer>
</dict>
</plist>

To get your Playstation3 to connect (or other device that is timing out while waiting for an IP Address), you need to change the integer value for the key reply_threshold_seconds from 4 to 0 (zero). Note: You will need an Administrator password to complete this process.

Here are the steps you'll need to follow to get this to work:

  • Turn on Internet Sharing so that the file mentioned above is created.
  • Open the Terminal application (usually found in Applications > Utilities)
  • Type this command and then press return to copy the file into the tmp directory:
    cp /etc/bootpd.plist /tmp/bootpd.plist
  • Turn off Internet Sharing. This will delete /etc/bootpd.plist
  • To open the copied file in TextEdit, type this command in the Terminal window and press return:
    open -e /tmp/bootpd.plist
  • Find this section near the end of the file
    <key>reply_threshold_seconds</key>
    <integer>4</integer>
  • Change 4 to 0 (zero).
  • Save and Close the file and Quit TextEdit.
  • To copy the file back to the original location, type this command  in the Terminal window and press return:
    sudo cp /tmp/bootpd.plist /etc
  • You will be prompted to enter a Password. Enter your Administrator password and press return.
  • Turn on Internet Sharing.
  • Try and connect with your PS3 (or other device).

You can also find details on how to fix this issue at Apple Support Communities and PlayStation®3 Technical Solutions.

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