WiFi Ninjas

WN Podcast 004 – Pre-Deployment Survey – 4P Part 2

Welcome to our fourth WiFi Ninjas Podcast episode!

Today weโ€™re going to discuss second survey type of our hot ‘4 Ps’ โ€“ Pre-Deployment Wireless Survey.

Just to recap, there 4 main types of wireless surveysL

  • Predictive (Software Simulation)
  • Pre-Deployment (Simulation Validation)
  • Post Deployment (Deployment Validation)
  • Periodic (Healthcheck)

Structure of todayโ€™s episode:

  • What is a Pre-Deployment Survey?
    • Predictive Survey Validation, checking if the Predictive Survey is accurate in real-world conditions
    • Simulating new WLAN deployment using AP-on-a-stick
  • What are the benefits and use cases for Pre-Deployment Survey?
    • Targeting greenfield sites that are too difficult or impractical to simulate in Ekahau
    • Prove the RF concept – example: will cross floor leakage between floors through atrium affect RTLS?
    • Ensures all the RF requirements (overlapping, coverage, etc.) are met before the WLAN is even deployed
  • Pre-Deployment Survey Tools
    • AP-on-a-stick
    • Ekahau
    • Predictive Survey Report
  • AP-on-a-stick configuration
    • Sturdy tripod, at least 3m high (but higher is better), can be on wheels
    • Different brackets for different types of APs
    • AP that will be used during the deployment or at least with very similar propagation pattern
    • PoE battery, ideally at least providing 30W 802.3at PoE for newer APs
    • Patch lead to connect the PoE battery to the AP
  • Pre-Reqs:
    • Complete Predictive Survey – see previous episode
    • Plan your day on site – ensure access to relevant areas and that the business knows how your work would look like
    • Sometimes multiple AP-on-a-sticks are required
    • Charge that PoE battery ๐Ÿ™‚
    • Take PoE injector with you
  • How do you perform Pre-Deployment Survey?
    • Prepare Ekahau survey – normally an empty project with just a scaled map and building layout
    • Place AP-on-a-stick in a proposed (in a Predictive Survey) new AP location
    • Do a ‘mini’ survey around it ensuring you go as far as the reach of the AP
    • Freeze the AP
    • Repeat for all the relevant APs in an area being subject to Pre-Deployment Survey
    • Create a report showing real heatmaps of a soon-to-be-completed wireless solution
  • Challenges
    • Clunky, heavy and expensive equipment
    • Very time consuming
    • More often than not doesn’t bring too much value to the project but extremely valuable for specific use-cases
    • In most cases a thing of a past, but still notoriously used as a main wifi planning tool by tons of vendor partners and integrators

Thanks for listening and please donโ€™t hesitate to leave a comment, feedback, subscribe or follow us on social media. Cheers!

WN Podcast 003 – Predictive Survey – 4P Part 1

Hello and welcome to our third WiFi Ninjas Podcast episode ๐Ÿ™‚

Today weโ€™re going to discuss one of our 4 Ps โ€“ Predictive Wireless Survey!

Mac has just moved to Boughton (outskirts of Northampton) and has some wireless coverage issues at home due to BT box sitting 2 floors below the home office. Sorry for the lower than expected quality while the home production network is being looked at ๐Ÿ™‚

Situation should improve in two weeks! Thankfully Matt is sounding as great as ever so we hope it will help with positive reception of this recording :]

Structure of todayโ€™s episode:

  • Predictive Wireless Survey โ€“ What is a Predicative Wireless Survey?
  • RF Design & Simulation
  • What tools do you use to complete this type of survey

What questions should you be thinking about?

  • How many APs and where?
  • What Power and Channels?
  • What APs and Antennas?

On-Site element part to the survey

  • RF Spectrum Analysis โ€“ duty cycle and interferers,
  • DFS Check โ€“ radar activity potentially affecting 5GHz band,
  • Visual Site Inspection โ€“ APs/antennas mounting limitations,
  • Attenuation of Walls and Ceilings โ€“ understand wireless propagation.

Off-Site element part to the survey

  • Use data captured on-site to build an Ekahau model of the premise and predict post-deployment RF parameters such as coverage, interference, SNR, channel overlapping, capacity health, data rate, roaming, throughput, redundancy and more.
  • Then use Ekahau reporting to build a beautiful report to provide all this information back to the customer and the cablers!

Thanks for listening and please donโ€™t hesitate to leave a comment, feedback, subscribe or follow us on social media. Cheers!

WN Podcast 002 – Wireless Professional Tools

Hello and welcome to our second WiFi Ninjas Podcast episode ๐Ÿ™‚

Today we’re going to discuss wireless professional tools that we use everyday to deliver our work while having some proper fun while doing it.

Mac has moved to Boughton (outskirts of Northampton) and has some wireless coverage issues at home due to BT box sitting 2 floors below the home office. Sorry for the lower than expected quality while the home production network is being looked at ๐Ÿ™‚ Situation should improve in two weeks! Thankfully Matt is sounding as great as ever so we hope it will help with positive reception of this recording :]

Download link for WiFi Explorer: Here

Structure of today’s episode:

  • Survey Software
    • Ekahau Site Survey ProSurvey Software
    • 4P
  • 802.11 WiFi Scanning Tools
    • Scanning wifi (802.11) vs non-wifi (spectrum) – both wireless
    • Ekahau with built in WNICs, dongles or Sidekick
    • Metageek inSSIDer (with free version now available)
    • Metageek Eye P.A. (focus on airtime based on captures and tshooting, but also good for basic scanning)
    • Mobile tools (Aruba Utilities on Android, etc.)
    • Wireless controllers
    • Cloud dashboards
  • Wireless Spectrum Analysis Tools
    • Ekahau with dongles (Wi-Spy DBx)
    • Ekahau with Sidekick
    • Cisco AP in SE-connect mode and Cisco Spectrum Expert (free) or MetaGeek Chanalyzer (paid)
    • Metageek Chanalyzer
    • Cloud dashboards
  • Wireless (and wired) Packet Capturing Tools
    • Wireless
      • Cisco AP in sniffer mode
      • Apple laptop
      • Windows laptop with dongle and drivers supporting monitoring mode
      • Savvius Omnipeek with own dongles
      • MetaGeek Eye P.A. with own dongles
      • Wireshark with all above
      • WLANPi (similar to Rasberry Pi) with Comfast dongle – great article by Nigel Bowden
      • 40MHz / 2SS only
      • Ekahau Sidekick soon
    • Wired
      • Wired computer with Wireshark
      • SPAN and RSPAN
      • In-line passive and active packet capture devices
  • Wireless Sensors
    • Cisco Aironet Sensor (requires Cisco DNAC)
    • 7 Signal (vendor agnostic)
    • Others
  • Other tools
    • Cloud dashboards
      • Tshooting
      • Intelligence
      • Historic view
    • Wireless controllers
      • stats, graphs, client debugs, etc.
    • Windows CMD:
      • Run ‘netsh wlan show wlanreport’ in admin CMD and then
      • Go to ‘C:/ProgramData/Microsoft/Windows/WlanReport/wlan-report-latest.html’
      • netsh wlan show interfaces (must be associated)
    • SDA
      • Cisco DNAC
      • Fabric vs non-fabric
      • More intelligence plus automation
    • API
      • Create in house tools
    • More hardware tools
      • DFS logs captures
      • Laser tool
      • Attenuation measure
        • mobile AP (better accuracy)
        • mobile phone (good enough)
      • Laptop harness, gun mouse, comfortable shoes, seagway ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks for listening and please donโ€™t hesitate to leave a comment, feedback, subscribe or follow us on social media. Cheers!

WN Podcast 001 – Wireless Podcast Intro

Welcome to our first episode, where we introduce ourselves and talk about the areas we’re going to cover in this podcast ๐Ÿ™‚

Your host will be Mac Deryng and Matt Starling – two wireless enthusiasts with bags full of experience.

We are planning to discuss many different topics but as the time passes we’re sure the structure will mature and more content will be added!

Podcast focus:

  • Wireless networks basics
  • RF
  • Surveys
  • Design
  • Integration
  • Troubleshooting
  • Optimisation
  • Captures
  • Tools
  • Interviews
  • Events
  • Trends
  • News
  • And more!
Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment, feedback, subscribe or follow us on social media. Cheers!