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A wireless LAN (WLAN) is a flexible data communication system implemented as an extension to, or as an alternative for, a wired LAN within a building or campus. Using electromagnetic waves, WLANs transmit and receive data over the air, minimizing the need for wired connections. Thus, WLANs combine data connectivity with user mobility, and, through simplified configuration, enable movable LANs.
Over the last seven years, WLANs have gained strong popularity in a number of vertical markets, including the health-care, retail, manufacturing, warehousing, and academic arenas. These industries have profited from the productivity gains of using hand-held terminals and notebook computers to transmit real-time information to centralized hosts for processing. Today WLANs are becoming more widely recognized as a general-purpose connectivity alternative for a broad range of business customers.


Wireless LANs frequently augment rather than replace wired LAN networks-often providing the final few feet of connectivity between a backbone network and the mobile user. The following list describes some of the many applications made possible through the power and flexibility of wireless LANs: Doctors and nurses in hospitals are more productive because hand-held or notebook computers with wireless LAN capability deliver patient information instantly. Consulting or accounting audit engagement teams or small workgroups increase productivity with quick network setup. Network managers in dynamic environments minimize the overhead of moves, adds, and changes with wireless LANs, thereby reducing the cost of LAN ownership. Training sites at corporations and students at universities use wireless connectivity to facilitate access to information, information exchanges, and learning. Network managers installing networked computers in older buildings find that wireless LANs are a cost-effective network infrastructure solution. Retail store owners use wireless networks to simply frequent network reconfiguration. Trade show and branch office workers minimize setup requirements by installing preconfigured wireless LANs needing no local MIS support. Warehouse workers use wireless LANs to exchange information with central databases and increase their productivity. Network managers implement wireless LANs to provide backup for mission-critical applications running on wired networks. Senior executives in conference rooms make quicker decisions because they have real-time information at their fingertips.


Because wireless technology has roots in military applications, security has long been a design criterion for wireless devices. Security provisions are typically built into wireless LANs, making them more secure than most wired LANs. It is extremely difficult for unintended receivers (eavesdroppers) to listen in on wireless LAN traffic. Complex encryption techniques make it impossible for all but the most sophisticated to gain unauthorized access to network traffic. In general, individual nodes must be security-enabled before they are allowed to participate in network traffic.

Ease of Use

Users need very little new information to take advantage of wireless LANs. Because the wireless nature of a WLAN is transparent to a users, applications work the same as they do on tethered LANs. WLAN products incorporate a variety of diagnostic tools to address issues associated with the wireless elements of the system; however, products are designed so that most users rarely need these tools. WLANs simplify many of the installation and configuration issues that plague network managers. Since only the access points of WLANs require cabling, network managers are freed from pulling cables for WLAN end users. Lack of cabling also makes moves, adds, and changes trivial operations on WLANs. Finally, the portable nature of WLANs lets network managers pre-configure and troubleshoot entire networks before installing them at remote locations. Once configured, WLANs can be moved from place to place with little or no modification.


The widespread strategic reliance on networking among competitive businesses and the meteoric growth of the Internet and online services are strong testimonies to the benefits of shared data and shared resources. With wireless LANs, users can access shared information without looking for a place to plug in, and network managers can set up or augment networks without installing or moving wires. Wireless LANs offer the following productivity, service, convenience, and cost advantages over traditional wired networks: Mobility-Wireless LAN systems can provide LAN users with access to real-time information anywhere in their organization. This mobility supports productivity and service opportunities not possible with wired networks. Installation Speed and Simplicity-Installing a wireless LAN system can be fast and easy and can eliminate the need to pull cable through walls and ceilings. Installation Flexibility-Wireless technology allows the network to go where wire cannot go. Reduced Cost-of-Ownership-While the initial investment required for wireless LAN hardware can be higher than the cost of wired LAN hardware, overall installation expenses and life-cycle costs can be significantly lower. Long-term cost benefits are greatest in dynamic environments requiring frequent moves, adds, and changes. Scalability-Wireless LAN systems can be configured in a variety of topologies to meet the needs of specific applications and installations. Configurations are easily changed and range from peer-to-peer networks suitable for a small number of users to full infrastructure networks of thousands of users that allows roaming over a broad area.


Wireless data technologies have been proven through more than fifty years of wireless application in both commercial and military systems. While radio interference can cause degradation in throughput, such interference is rare in the workplace. Robust designs of proven WLAN technology and the limited distance over which signals travel result in connections that are far more robust than cellular phone connections and provide data integrity performance equal to or better than wired networking.


A site survey is a physical survey of the customer's premises or proposed 'Hot-Zone' to identify the best possible locations to install backhaul equipment and access points to ensure 100% wireless coverage, along with maximum performance, within the desired area. When considering the use of wireless equipment, it is extremely difficult to predict the propagation of radio waves and detect the presence of interfering signals without the use of specialized test equipment. Even if you are using omni-directional antennas, radio waves do not travel the same distance in all directions. Walls, doors, elevator shafts, people, and other obstacles offer varying degrees of attenuation, which cause the radio frequency (RF) radiation pattern to be irregular and unpredictable. As a result, one should have an RF site survey performed to understand fully the behavior of radio waves within a facility or outdoor site before installing any wireless devices. The goal of an RF site survey is to gather enough information and data to determine the number and placement of access points that will provide the coverage required. Coverage required usually means the support of a minimum data rate in a given area. An RF site Survey will also detect the presence of radio interference coming from other sources that could degrade the performance of the wireless system. The need and complexity of an RF site survey will vary depending on the size of the facility or site and the work that is to be accomplished. A site survey is a good idea for the use of any wireless device because without a survey, users could end up with inadequate coverage and suffer from low performance in some areas. The purchase of wireless equipment is no small expenditure, so it is best not to leave any portion of the project up to chance. To ensure the accuracy of the final site survey report that Computer-Sam.com delivers, only the latest and most sophisticated equipment is used to check for Signal Level, Noise Level, and more importantly SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio). After the site survey, we will design the network infrastructure to fit your specific needs. Using the information obtained during the site survey, Computer-Sam.com will design a wireless network infrastructure for your specific environment that will ensure complete propagation to each of your devices.



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