Wireless Access

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Extremely Poor Signal Strength

Hey guys, I have a wireless network with a building that's two stories, roughly 24,000 sq. ft. I have 5 Aruba 207s on the first floor (attached) and 4 upstairs roughly directly above the red ones in the attached picture, which shows the first floor locations. The access point in blue is roughly 45 ft. from the front, back and near side wall, for reference.

 

Also attached is the signal strength measurements for several clients, and it's horrible. Standard office with normal drywall and metal studs.

 

I'm sure I have some problems with the 2.4 GHz channels overlapping since my signals are definitely overlapping, which I'll fix tonight.

 

The APs are set to auto ARM and the downstairs APs have chosen the following power settings on their 2.4 GHz radios:

Left AP: 23 dB

Top left AP: 18

Top right AP: 18

Right AP: 23

Center AP (blue): 6

 

So, definitely too strong... but, channel overlapping doesn't explain the 5 GHz band being super, super slow with horrible signal strengths. I have no interfering APs or rogue networks coming in from the outside.

 

What else could cause the poor signal strength on the devices that are connecting to channels 60+, 108+, and 124+? The noise on every single AP is -90 dB +/- 5 dB, so at least that's consistent.

 

The devices are all within 40 ft. of their AP and connecting to the proper AP, so it's not channel overlaps.Screen Shot 2019-06-03 at 6.08.08 PM.pngScreen Shot 2019-06-03 at 6.24.28 PM.png

Guru Elite

Re: Extremely Poor Signal Strength

What are the walls made of?  It is unlikely that access point coverage will penetrate sufficiently through 3 walls or more to provide good client coverage.  If this was an open floor plan, instead of rooms, you would have better coverage.

 

Was a predictive or actual RF survey done of this location before deployment?


*Answers and views expressed by me on this forum are my own and not necessarily the position of Aruba Networks or Hewlett Packard Enterprise.*
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New Contributor

Re: Extremely Poor Signal Strength

That's what's weird. Before we upgraded to Arubas, there were only 3 APs upstairs and 2 downstairs, and the wifi service was only troublesome in the bottom right corner offices of the diagram.

You can literally stand underneath an access point with a clear line of sight no more than 3 feet away and get a poor signal.

 

Nothing about this makes any sense.

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New Contributor

Re: Extremely Poor Signal Strength

I just took the network down to 1 AP only, and forgot and rejoined the network, and it took me 4 tries of typing in the wifi password before it let me on. I did not mistype it at all.

 

So weird.

New Contributor

Re: Extremely Poor Signal Strength

No, we're never done a wireless survey. We've just done dozens (if not over a hundred) of similar projects just like this with metal studs and regular old drywall. I'm convinced that *actual* signal strength isn't an issue.

 

Attached here is an example of me running wifi connection test at various locations running off of only ONE access point: the top left one with the dot in the middle of the AP circle.

 

The first is whether my Mac connected with the .11ac or the .11n protocol. The second line is what the AP web GUI says my signal strength is. The third line is the RSSI reading directly from my MacBook.

 

As you can see, just ONE access point covers nearly 100% of the first floor with its power setting automatically set at 27 dB. I'm even connecting just fine to this first-floor AP from the second floor 50 ft. away on the .11n 2.4 band.

Guru Elite

Re: Extremely Poor Signal Strength

You wouldn't survey or run an access point at the highest transmit power.  If a user remains connected to the access point all the way on the other end of the floor, they will degrade the performance of all other clients on that access point, even though they would appear to have good signal strength.

 

Is this a low-density environment?  What is the "noise" parameter for each of those access points?  Noise or interference could decrease the performance of those devices.  There may also be other factors in that environment that we cannot see like possibly attenuators in the walls.  It is hard to say with the limited information provided.


*Answers and views expressed by me on this forum are my own and not necessarily the position of Aruba Networks or Hewlett Packard Enterprise.*
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