WiFi has become increasingly important in the enterprise. More employees are using more devices that rely on your wireless infrastructure. In office settings, more employees are using notebooks and tablets. In retail spaces, more and more devices such as label printers and price scanners are being made with wireless capability. All of this traffic makes it imperative that your wireless infrastructure is functioning at 100% efficiency.

We at Revenstar understand the many complexities of both radio propagation and networking, giving us a unique advantage in specifying and installing wireless infrastructure. All of our WiFi customers receive a site survey to determine their peak data usage and how to get the desired level of performance using the lowest possible number of access points, while still allowing for future expansion.

Our knowledge of the ins and outs of the Cisco and Mikrotik access points we install means we know:
  • What needs to be done to get the most bandwidth out of an AP
  • How to properly secure your network from unwanted access 
  • How to provide reserve capacity for peak usage times
  • How to optimize traffic for wireless
  • How to setup learning on access points to use the least congested channels
  • How to properly setup roaming on wireless clients
  • How to avoid interference between adjacent APs

We can even setup a separate wireless subnet that is firewalled from the business network, but delivered over the same APs, allowing you to provide free/open wifi for customers without worrying about sensitive business data being compromised. Should you choose to offer free public wifi, we can set limits on connect times and bandwidth to discourage abuse, and employ traffic shaping to ensure your business traffic has first priority.

How To Do It Wrong: A Case Study

WiFi is such a simple service that it's surprising that so many network administrators and installers get it so very wrong. This example is a Cisco access point that was improperly sited and installed. There were several things done wrong here. All of the antennas are oriented in the same direction, which not only negates any advantage of using access points with multiple antennas, it offers lower performance than only using one antenna. To the right is a diagram of the radiation pattern of the antennas used on this access point. The green line represents the antenna, red represents the highest signal strength and blue represents the lowest signal strength.

This access point was mounted in the back corner of the store. Considering the radiation pattern, the part of the antenna radiating the lowest amount of signal (the tip) is pointed towards the area where the signal will be used, and the part of the antenna radiating the most signal is directed into the ceiling and the floor. The combination of these mistakes means lower signal levels where it's needed, more RF power radiated where it isn't wanted, more interference with adjacent stations, and lower data rates. In this case, the access point should have been mounted on the ceiling in the center of the store with the antennas at 90° angles from each other: one pointed straight down and one pointed straight out. It's the details that make the difference.

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