understanding wireless and wireless LAN networking

Understandingwireless and wireless LAN networkingenable you to properly plan and design the effective deployment ofwireless networks be it home-networking or using outdoor long-rangeWLAN for rural internet connectivity.

Wireless CommunicationResource

Wirelessnetworkingallows computers and peripherals to communicate using radio frequency(RF) transmissions rather than over conventional network cabling. Usingwireless Ethernet adaptors, any device capable of being used on aregular computer network can be accessed over a wireless connection fortask ranging from file and printer sharing to multimedia and internetaccess.

WirelessEthernet Technology is outlined by a setof standards called IEEE 802.11. Although other wireless technologiesand protocols exist, the term wireless is generally used in referenceto the IEEE 802.11 standards.

Thecommunication protocols forwireless networking are defined by the Institute of ElectricalEngineers (IEEE) 802.11 standard, which incorporates the 802.11a,802.11b and 802.11g protocols (although other standards are inprogress). The most widely used of these is 802.11b (Wireless-B), whichis more reliable than the faster 802.11a (Wireless-A) standard, and ismore cost-effective to produce and operate as well. Wireless-G or802.11g, is a newer protocol that is becoming more widely adopted byvendors as it is capable of speeds up to 54Mbps rather than the 11Mbpsof 802.11b devices.

It isvery rare to find devices that supportall three standards, but Wireless-G is designed to be backwardscompatible with Wireless-B devices. Thus Wireless-B and Wireless-Adevices will not work with each other, and neither are they compatiblewith Wireless-G devices. However, you can plan your network deploymentespecially if it entails a wide-area networking by using a combinationof Wireless-B,G or A.

Wireless802.11 standard utilizesthe license-free radio frequency bands around the 2.4GHz and/or 5GHzranges. The 802.11b and 802.11g protocols use the 2.4GHz band whereas802.11a uses the 5GHz band. Wireless-B is by far the most popularstandard, with the newer Wireless-G (802.11g) and Wireless-A (802.11a)closing in fast.

Wi-FIor Wireless Fidelity is acertification program established by the Wi-Fi Alliance to ensureinteroperability of wireless devices. Originally, the term Wi-Fi wasintended to be interchangeable with 802.11b, but more recently it hasbroadened to cover any 802.11 network.

WLANor Wireless Local Area Network,is a computer network –or part thereof- that incorporates wirelessdevices. In a WLAN network, a conventional LAN set-up can be extendedto include wireless devices using an access point. Although wirelessnetworks can be completely independent of conventional network, WLANusually forms part of an existing wired network.

WirelessTransmission rangesvary greatly and lowering the bandwidth will increase the coveragearea, a standard 802.11b or 802.11g device will typically have a rangeof about 30m indoor and up to 120m line-of-sight outdoors. The mainreason for the variance between indoors and line-of-sight coverage isthat walls and other objects do impede the wireless signal. Becausewireless transmissions are actually low frequency radio waves, theywill pass through walls and other solid matter relatively easy. Asdistance increases, the throughput decreases. This is because lowersignal strength result in dropped packets and result in a generaldecrease in network efficiency.

Cost-Effective Solution

Understandingthe technology inwireless and wireless LAN/WAN networking allows the planner theflexibility of using wired and wireless networks. There are areas thatwired networks can not go owing to distance, terrain or topography thusif the planner has knowledge on wireless LAN networking, the simpler,faster and easy it is to deploy an effective wireless network.

Understandinghow wireless LAN works will also help you plan deployment of a ruralwireless internet access service. Wireless LAN is a very cost-effectivesolution for much needed internet connectivity requirements in far,remote villages. WISP is a good and potential business in remote areas.

Either you usecommercial "off-the-shelf" WLAN gadget, tweakand improve its performance by using higher-gain outdoor antenna or buya true-outdoor long-range Wireless LAN. For assured networkperformance, service-quality and less network downtime, we recommendusing the latter.

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