WifiLapper/Speeding up Connection Times

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If you are having trouble make a connection between the WifiLapper app and Pitside over Wifi, here are a few tips.

Check the Wifidots

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First things first you'll need to make sure the phone is in range of the router. This can done by opening pitside and loading the Database corresponds to the sessions you were having issues in. In the example below you can see that both Wifi Dots channels logged something during a lap. This indicates that the phone was "seeing" the selected Wifi Network. As you can see, the connection was available for a while (about 15 seconds).

Making Changes

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Depending on the Android phone model, the Wifi connection interval can be set anywhere from 2 to 90 seconds from the factory. We can edit these parameters to speed up the connection time of WifiLapper to Pitside. The phone will need to be rooted to make this change. Beware that rooting your phone may void your Warranty or violate your wireless carrier contract. If you don't know how to root your phone, Google it. Be warned if something isn't done right during the rooting process, damage can be done to the phone. It's pretty hard to hurt Android phones, or "brick it" in hacking terms, but anything is possibly in experimental hacking. Users have reported getting it wrong 5 times on a phone while attempting to root it, but no physical harm was done to the device. As always, your mileage may vary. Consider this prior warning.

After the phone has been rooted, use File Manager to gain access to the "build.prop" file. Start by opening the File Manager app and open the setting menu, scroll to the bottom and enable Root Explorer and Mount System Folders.

Use the Up button to get to the root folder (usually 2 taps)

Find the "system" folder, click it

You should now see the build.prop file in the current folder

Tap and Hold on the file until the following menu comes up

Tap Permissions

Make a note of how the File Permissions are set before making any changes. You will want to set them back to this when we are finished editing.

Enable Read, Write and Execute permissions for all 3 groups to allow the file to be edited. They may not all have to be enabled but it always works this way

Close the menu and tap "build.prop"

Choose "Open as Text"

Be careful while in here, changes may break stuff** Now find the line that reads "wifi.supplicant_scan_interval=". This is how many seconds between attempts to connect to a known WiFi Network. Some phones are set to 90 seconds. For typical lap times at most race tracks, that means the window of connection opportunity is very limited. The WifiLapper team recommends setting the wifi.supplicant_scan_interval to 2 seconds.

Make sure you Save the changes when you exit. It is also a good idea to return the "build.prop" file permissions to how they were originally found to prevent any accidental changes in the future.

Reboot the phone. The changes don't take effect until rebooted. Run some test laps at safe speeds around your neighborhood to verify WiFi connection to Pitside.