About the status light on AirPort base stations

The LED status light on AirPort Time Capsule, AirPort Extreme, and AirPort Express Base Station flashes (blinks) or changes color to indicate the status of the base station.

When you connect power to your AirPort base station, the status light on the front of the base station flashes green for one second, then glows solid amber while the base station starts up. Afterward, if the base station is set up correctly and can connect to the Internet, the status light glows solid green. If there is a problem, the status light flashes amber.

Status light Description


No power

Solid amber

Completing the startup sequence

Solid green

Working normally

Flashing amber Startup is complete, but the base station has detected a condition that requires your attention.

Solid blue*

Ready to allow a wireless client to access the network via Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS).

Flashing green*

In some older versions of AirPort Utility, you can choose Flash On Activity from the Status Light pop-up menu in the settings for that base station. Flashing green indicates normal activity.

Alternating amber/green* In some older versions of AirPort Utility, you can select the base station and choose Base Station > Identify from the menu bar, which causes this alternating light sequence. It helps you to identify the selected base station when multiple base stations are available. 

* Available on 802.11a/b/g/n models of AirPort Time Capsule and AirPort Extreme.

If the status light flashes amber

These are some typical reasons for the status light to flash amber:

  • The base station hasn't been set up, or it was reset and needs to be set up again. Use AirPort Utility to set up your base station.
  • A firmware update is available for the base station.
  • The base station is set up to use Back to My Mac, but Back to My Mac isn't working or the password is incorrect. As of July 1, 2019, Back to My Mac service is no longer available.
  • The base station can't connect to the Internet, such as when Internet service is down at your location, the base station can't acquire an IP address from your primary router, or the WAN Ethernet connection to your router isn't working.
  • The base station is set up to wirelessly extend the range of your network, but is too far away from the primary Wi-Fi base station.
  • If your base station is an AirPort Time Capsule, its internal hard disk is experiencing an issue that requires repair.


Check base station settings

To resolve an issue related to base station settings, you can either change the setting or tell AirPort Utility to ignore it. Ignoring an issue doesn't resolve it, but causes the status light to stop flashing for that issue.

  1. Open AirPort Utility, which is in the Utilities folder of your Applications folder.
  2. In the AirPort Utility window, click the base station to see a details pop-up with more information about the issue. Either choose the setting to ignore the issue, or click Edit to open the settings window.
  3. Make any changes needed in settings, then click Update to apply those changes and restart the base station.

Repeat these steps as needed until all settings-related issues are resolved or ignored.

Learn more

  • When you connect an Ethernet cable to an Ethernet port of your base station, the status light above that port glows solid green.
  • The original 802.11 b/g model of AirPort Extreme Base Station had three status lights, not one. For details, see the AirPort Extreme Base Station User Guide (PDF).
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