Wireless Survey – A Case Study

A leading global bank that was facing key technology challenges of moving from a wired centric to a wireless-centric network.

The project objective was to reduce the reliance on wired infrastructure in campus sites, to migrate users to the wireless solution and reduce the required network switch port count. The delivery included creating a new site alongside the existing and then the migration of users across to the new infrastructure.

A Wifi survey was conducted at all the sites which consisted of the following processes

Passive Survey – During a passive survey, the site survey application passively listened to WLAN traffic to detect active access points, measuring signal strength and noise levels.

Inter Floor Propagation – As part of the survey we needed to gain an understanding of how 802.11 signals propagate through the floors of the facility where the deployment of the wireless network was taking place.

Spectrum Analysis – For the survey spectrum analysis was needed to negate high RF interference from non-802.11 sources, such as microwave ovens or cordless phones.

AP on a Stick (APOS) – During the predictive survey, a model of the RF environment was created using simulation tools. It is essential that the correct information on the environment is entered into the RF modelling tool, including location and RF characteristics of barriers like walls or large objects. Therefore, temporary access points or signal sources were used to gather information on propagation in the environment. Virtual access points were then placed on the floor plan to estimate expected coverage and adjust their number and location.

Heat maps generated from software Fluke Airmagnet were used to predictive WiFi survey. The client was able to design a 100% WiFi network coverage including meeting the capacity criteria. The survey was conducted in multiple locations in India and UAE.

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