What's Jamming Your Network
Wi-Fi network jammed? This tool exposes the culprits.
The air around your office is likely clogged with wireless networks and devices like cordless phones and microwaves. That invisible traffic jam can cause interference problems with your Wi-Fi system. Spectrum analyzers are tools that help you suss out the sources of interference and choose a Wi-Fi channel that will give you a cleaner signal. Until recently, spectrum analyzers were somewhat pricey investments. But now, MetaGeek is bringing a spectrum analyzer to the masses with the $99 (street) Wi-Spy for the 2.4GHz band.
Wi-Spy comes as a kit with an installation CD and a small USB device. We plugged it into a Windows XP laptop to check out our 802.11g network. Installation is straightforward, and the program opens to show a graphical analyzer view. You can immediately see which Wi-Fi channels are full of activity. You can also switch over to a frequency view and check which frequencies are busy or subject to interference. After that, you can set your wireless network accordingly.
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