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Understanding Your Wireless Can Be BERRY Simple (by Tony Fortunato)

Tony_fortunatoThe_tech_firmAuthor Profile - Tony Fortunato is a Senior Network Specialist with experience in design, implementation, and troubleshooting of LAN/WAN/Wireless networks, desktops and servers since 1989. His background in financial networks includes design and implementation of trading floor networks. Tony has taught at local high schools, Colleges/Universities, Networld/Interop and many onsite private classroom settings to thousands of analysts. Tony is an authorized and certified Fluke Networks and Wireshark Instructor. His Pine Mountain Group CNA Level I and II certification demonstrates his vendor neutral approach to network design, support and implementations. Tony has architected, installed and supported various types of Residential Wireless High Speed as well as hundreds of WIFI hotspots. Tony uses a variety of technologies from Powerline, Wireless and wired technologies to find the most cost-efficient and reliable solution for his customers. Tony combines custom programs, open source and commercial software to ensure a simple support infrastructure.


Blackberry_outdoor


At a meeting I was asked to take a quick look at the current wireless deployment. Unfortunately I did not have my laptop or tools with me.  I'll expect you Network Boyscouts to email about "Always being prepared shortly".

Wait a minute - I have my Blackberry with me and it is WIFI capable. 

People will mention that the WIFI radio and antenna in my 8320 aren't that great.  I totally agree.  All the more reason to USE IT.  If my 'poor antenna' and weak radio can get a good signal strength with little noise, your laptop shouldn't have an issue. 

If your AP's support it, I suggest looking in your client table to record how well the AP can hear my Blackberry as well.  People forget WIFI is a 2-way street.

Here are the steps I used for some basic poking around.


1. Enable my WIFI radio and select WI-FI Options from the menu


Bbscreen[1]


2. From the WI-FI Connections menu, choose WI-FI Diagnostics from the menu


Bbscreen[2]


3. This diagnostic screen will display your current wireless statistics.  Nice to know, but no need to write this down.  Press the Menu button and you can EMAIL the results to yourself.


Bbscreen[3]


From the same menu you can even do a simple site survey to identify channels in use, etc..


Bbscreen[4] 


Bbscreen[5] 


Here is a sample of a partial diagnostic email;

Diag


And a sitesurvey email

Survey


It is that simple, BERRY simple. Bye for now.


The_tech_firm



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