InSSIDER – How to monitor WIFI for higher speeds and clearer signals – Windows 7 and MAC
This is only one free WIFI scanner that I rate highly, namely, InSSIDER Home, which works on Windows and MAC.
You can download the free home version here:
Version 4 is the paid for version – the Home version is free from copyright restrictions, so don’t worry about downloading this from torrents.
Step 1 – Install InSSIDer
The main menu screen appears – click on Networks.
Step 2 – Find the SSID of your home Wifi
1. Find the signal strength of your home wifi – the lower the better. 30 db is sitting on top of the WIFI. Metageek have provided a signal strength guide, which I’ve copied for you – at the end of this article.
2. Look at the Link Score – the higher the better! This shot is messy – as for privacy reasons I’ve had to remove the SSID and MAC addresses of the routers detected.
Often your neighbours WIFI will interfere with your signal.
The best channels are 1, 6 and 11 – and now you’re going to want to know why these channels are the best. The 2.4 GHZ frequency has 11 channels – which are crowded and overlapping.
Metageek explain this well ” The 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n) spectrum is 100 MHz wide and made up of 11 channels centered 5 MHz apart. Each 2.4GHz channel is 20 – 22 MHz wide.”
If each channel is 20 MHz wide, this means there will be a minimum of 10 MHz of overlap with neighboring channels (overlapping channel interference). For example, if your network is on channel 9, it will overlap with channels 7, 8, 10, 11.
However, Channels 1, 6 and 11 don’t overlap each other.
Your neighbours WIFI will transmit and interfere with your signals… here’s the kind of odd interference that I suffer from… caused by a WIFI across the street from me (it’s the red dotted line… it spikes constantly).
InSSIDer will also split the channels by frequency eg 2.4 GHZ or 5.0 GHZ bands and any overlapping channels.
Cool tool right!
What signal strength do you need?
Wi-Fi is generally measured with dBm, with is not an absolutely value, being logarithmic instead.
A 3 dB gain means *TWICE* the signal strength, while a 3 dB loss *HALVES* the signal strength. Remember these rules when designing your WIFI.
Metageek have provided a signal strength guide, which basically means that if you can get 50-60 db’s, then that’s fine for most applications.