Cannot Setup Sonos on Xfinity Wifi — Ridiculous

  • 28 June 2019
  • 4 replies

Just switched to Xfinity for better bandwidth and Sonos does not work with their Xfi wireless router cable modem. I cannot even get through the set up. The SONOS wifi network never shows up during set up, have updated everything SW wise. I have like $4K of Sonos gear and can’t use it.

Sonos doesnt answer their phone. Is someone going to help here ? My only other option is to sell everything at a huge loss and spend the rest of my life telling this story that is not pretty.

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4 replies

Connect one of your Sonos devices via the Ethernet port on the back of the Xfinity router. Then you can change the SSID/password to the new info.

Note that if the Xfinity router defaults to 5 GHz and doesn't bridge to 2.4 GHz, you may have to purchase a Sonos Boost and connect that to the Ethernet port, thus running in Sonosnet mode. However, with $4000 worth of gear, it is recommended you run in Sonosnet mode (aka 'Wired Setup") anyway.

See this link for info:
Thanks for the reply. I did set up “boost mode” using ethernet out of a Playbar — I can’t find details on what the Boost itself adds over a wired connection from a speaker, except portability near the router. Does the Connect act as a Boost also? I have a spare one! I would order a Boost ... $99 is cheap if it fixes the problem. Not sure what it adds though.

So I set up the wired Playbar, and got it working, until I plugged the xFi Pods back in (xfinity mesh network). Then it all went haywire again. The Apple TV driving the Sonos home theater lost track of the Sonos on the wifi network (are they supposed to show up in the main wifi network or their own Sonosnet?). The sonosnet stuff is not well documented or easy to find at least. I know this requires a architecture drawing now.

I’m thinking about maybe setting up a spare Apple airport extreme 2.4Mghz wifi network off my xfi 5mghz router, and then running the Sonos system and TVs only on that network, though that means my controller has to run on that wifi net to play music. Basically to segregate the wireless networks ... I think that will support 100mb down for video and music even though I’ve got gigabit connection (usually 50-60% of that in wirelesss network anyway). Any risk in wireless congestion if I do that? I could hardcorde to a specific channel I think.

I really need someone to provide me with a drawing:
  • xfinity xfi (with Pod mesh network) across 4000sqFt
  • mixed Sonos (Play Ones, 1s, 5s, Beam, Playbar, sub ... connect on the shelf)
  • LG smart tv
  • Apple TV
Not finding the info to make it all work together, but seems to be xfi causing the problems that I can’t override.
OK this should not be this problematic or complex! You started by saying that 'the Sonos network never shows up on set up'. No new set up is needed on changing router, so no Sonos network is expected. Have you been trying to do a new system set up? If so I am not sure exactly where that may have left things.

There is no significant difference between wiring any Sonos component and using a Boost, so if you have something else use that.

You should not have to worry about interactions with Apple TV or anything else and for goodness sake don't add an Apple Extreme into the mix.

I assume the xfi modem / router is the only possible DHCP server in the system, i.e. the only thing handing out IP addresses?

Please try the following. Wire a single Play speaker to the xfi router. Power off other Sonos. Connect your controller to wifi. Can you see the Play speaker and get music out of it? Please post back.
After changing routers, always shut down everything on the network (wired and wireless) and reboot. Otherwise you risk grappling with multiple vexing issues until all of the DHCP leases are renewed. (And working through all of the glitches may require multiple renewal cycles) This is complicated by the Xfinity routers because they usually default to one week lease renewals.

The Xfinity router will also establish a WiFi hotspot for its customers. They are very proud of this and try to promote "WiFi everywhere" for their customers. If one of your devices, especially a device running a SONOS controller, signs on as a hotspot client, you will not be able to control the SONOS system, but Internet access on that device will be fine.

Make sure that the Xfinity router is using a fixed WiFi channel (1, 6, or 11), not "Auto", and use a different channel from SonosNet.

If there are any devices on the network that use fixed IP addresses, such as alarm systems or control systems, you'll need to adjust the Xfinity router's DHCP range of IP addresses to avoid this block of addresses. (This will require rebooting any DHCP client devices that are duplicating the address of a fixed device)

After you get things working, I recommend that you reserve IP addresses for all of the DHCP clients that regularly use the network. Unfortunately, I don't recall if Xfinity refers to this as "Fixed" or "Reserved" addresses during setup.