• United States

Where WLAN analyzers apply

Apr 14, 20032 mins
Network SecurityWi-Fi

A wireless LAN analyzer can help in all three stages of a WLAN’s life.

wireless LAN analyzer can help in all three stages of a WLAN’s life:

1) Site survey: WLANs are unlicensed radio transports for Ethernet. As such, they are subject to unseen and heretofore undetected or interfering radio commotion in the desired coverage area. Some analyzers we tested were decidedly better than others at surveying a proposed WLAN site. The AirMagnet handheld and laptop versions, as well as Fluke’s OptiView wireless option, were especially strong on radio analysis. All the analyzers (except the Sniffer Portable) also could detect high background noise sources.

2) Deployment: Analysis during deployment aids a plan developed from site survey results. Access points are deployed to best cover geography with available signal. Security methods in the access points and WLAN clients that connect to the network infrastructure are verified. Some of the notebook-based analyzers tested weren’t as adept as the handheld testers in this phase of deployment.

3) Troubleshooting and auditing: Post-installation connectivity problems between clients and access points can be analyzed. Traffic and signal distribution problems can be found, analyzed and corrected. This also is when rogue equipment might be detected, as well as discovering users who play with WLAN-associated settings.

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