EE Tech Tips – Custom Installation

Oils Ain’t Oils, Wifi Ain’t WiFi!

Most motor enthusiasts will acknowledge that not all motor oils are the same, well the same can be said for WiFi, with many people not understanding the basic fundamentals of this technology. In the first part of this series on Wi-Fi we will be discussing – Channels.

The majority of domestic WiFi networks in Australia operate at 2.4GHz, configured at 802.11 b/g/n. An important aspect to keep in mind when researching WiFi is not to get caught up in all the jargon such as Gigabits, Mega-Hertz and cryptic numbers like 802.11b.

For complete separation and NO interference channels 1, 6 & 11 should be selected when setting up your WiFi network. The vast majority of off the shelf modems with built-in WiFi or dedicated access points are pre-configured to channel 6, and in most installations no change is ever made. Why is this important? Imagine, an entire street, and every house on the street is using WiFi, and every WiFi network is using the same channel, you get the picture? However, with the help of easy to use WiFi scanning software that is readily available from the Internet, you can overcome this congestion by scanning existing WiFi networks around your home and then configuring your network for optimum performance. By scanning the WiFi networks close to you, you will be able to view the channels that appear the least and the channels with the weakest signal, you then set your WiFi network to one of these channels. It’s also important to perform the scan in the morning and the evening, and roam between different areas of your home, as results can vary between different rooms, and when neighbours are at home or at work. This exercise should be performed on all WiFi access points in your home, with each access point utilising a separate channel, compared to it’s surrounding networks.

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