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Wireless Networking

What's Killing Your Wi-Fi? 248 248

Barence writes "PC Pro has taken an in-depth look at Wi-Fi and the factors that can cause connections to crumble. It dispels some common myths about Wi-Fi problems — such as that neighboring Wi-Fi hotspots are the most common cause of problems, instead of other RF interference from devices such as analogue video senders, microwave ovens and even fish tanks. The feature also highlights free and paid-for tools that can diagnose Wi-Fi issues, such as inSSIDer and Heatmapper, the latter of which maps provides a heatmap of Wi-Fi hotspots in your home or office."
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What's Killing Your Wi-Fi?

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  • Horrible link... (Score:4, Informative)

    by Azmodan (572615) on Monday May 30, 2011 @04:27PM (#36290366)
    Billions of ads + need to check 15 pages to RTFA... and the article is actually a little shallow...
  • by cerberusss (660701) on Monday May 30, 2011 @04:40PM (#36290468) Homepage Journal

    Both InSIDDer and Heatmapper are Windows-only, AFAIK. For Linux, there's the awesome Kismet [kismetwireless.net] and its cousin for OS X, KisMAC [kismac-ng.org].

  • Re:microwave (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 30, 2011 @04:51PM (#36290568)

    ditto. take a fluorescent bulb to microwave and shut off light sources. If the bulb starts to glow replace the microwave.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Monday May 30, 2011 @05:05PM (#36290692)
    I'm not sure about how it works in the standard US setup, but here in the UK if you want more than basic OTA broadcast reception you'll have a set-top-box - either cable decoder, or sat decoder. That's fine for watching in one room, but how do you watch those channels in another? One way is to rent a second STB, which means lots of money plus pulling new cable through the walls. The other is a TV sender. Takes the STB output, transmits it, reciever in another room gets them and outputs to TV. Only drawback is you can't change the channel remotely, and some will even do that by transmitting the IR signal the other way over radio.

    They used to work by just transmitting an analog TV signal that any TV in range could pick up with a loop antenna, but those were banned years ago due to interference issues (And, according to rumor, a few incidents of pornography ending up on the neighbour's TV). The new ones operate up in 2.4GHz band, killing wireless networks.
  • 5GHz, or wired (Score:4, Informative)

    by sillivalley (411349) <sillivalley@@@comcast...net> on Monday May 30, 2011 @05:22PM (#36290870)
    Go 5GHz with WPA2 and 802.11n -- you'll have great performance until all your neighbours do the same.

    Go wired (gigabit) when you can -- that's faster and more secure.

    If you're forced to run on 2.4, don't expect great things in crowded (spectrum) areas. Do spectrum scans, and if you can't work with one of the non-overlapping 2.4GHz channels (1,6,11), and can't use a directional antenna (you can build your own corner reflector or parabolic reflector for under $1) try 3 or 8 and don't worry about HT (high throughput) datarates.

    Take up arc welding as a hobby.

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