Interference and Design - Small Office

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  • Updated 5 years ago
Hello Folks,

I'll keep this as succinct as possible:
  • Small commercial office - 4K sq. feet
  • Client has 1 (consumer grade) b/g/n AP (Cisco / Linksys)
  • Both bands in operation, auto-channel-select enabled on 2.4, channel 153 at 80MHz on 5GHz
  • Client complaining of poor WiFi Performance
  • AirMagnet shows very congested airspace - 19 SSIDs / 25 WAPs in the surrounding offices / buildings
  • Every "alien" AP is operating on 1, 6, or 11 on 2.4
  • Two APs are operating close enough to channel 153 to concern me
I need to solve the client's problem.  Certainly getting the consumer-grade WAP out of there is the first step.  I'd like to put in a pair of Unleashed R600 access points.

What are your high-level config recommendations to help deal with the congestion / neighboring WLANs?  Would a couple of APs placed in the right locations, along with ChannelFly do the trick?

Credibility concern:  Removing the existing AP with auto-channel capabilities and replacing it with different (albeit commercial grade) APs with the same type of feature.  I need to be careful how I explain this, and confident that ChannelFly (if used) will work better than what's already there.

Thanks in advance.

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Bruce Gettel

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Posted 5 years ago

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Monnat Systems, AlphaDog

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just a thought...

why two of the R600? when requirement is currently met by one of consumer grade b/g/n AP (Cisco / Linksys)

R600 would be far superior in range, client handling capacity etc...

If congestion / neighboring WLANs is the problem then ChannelFly will do the trick however i would suggest that have channelfly ON but also enables MTBC function so that you have channelfly but it will switch channel at less intervals..
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Daniel M

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Does Unleashed have the MTBC function?

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Check AP positioning and ensure it's placed in a manner that gives optimum coverage - remember and keep the AP's antenna at least 1 wavelength (12.5cm) away from reflective surfaces like metal.

I would then do a survey and find out the coverage from all of the 3rd party AP's.

You could try using Ekahaus free heatmapper tool:

Then from the results I would look at the standards used, channel occupancy and signal levels in the areas of concern.

Note: If there are AP's using the lower rates i.e. 802.11b , then you may need an AP that uses AirtimeFairness to mitigate the probability of the DCF MAC issue - cue Ruckus AP's.

If there aren't any 802.11b AP's, you may be able to just simply add in another Cisco/Linksys AP and shout louder than everyone else, making sure you try and use the least congested channels to help with airtime.