WiFi Site Survey Definitions

Active Scanning

Active scanning is where the download speed, upload speed and wireless transmit rate of a network can be measured.

AP (Access Point)

A wireless access point (also called a WAP or hotspot) is a device (such as a wireless router) that allows other wireless devices (such as a computer) to connect to a local area network using radio waves instead of wires. It acts as an antenna, transmitting and receiving wireless signals and relaying them to the network. SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can scan an area and identify the quantity and strength of all access points within range.

Area Map

Each SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey is based on a map of the location that is to be scanned. The map should be a floorplan of the area, with all interior walls and other barriers marked. The map must be drawn to scale in order for the scan to be accurate. Area maps can be provided as file from a scanner or outside drawing program, or the map can be drawn by SynoTek, LLC.

SSID, BSSID & ESSID

These acronyms all describe wireless network identities (names). SSID stands for Service Set Identifier and the “B” and “E” versions stand for “Basic” (MAC address of the Station in an Access Point) and “Extended” (the identifying name of a wireless network) respectively. SynoTek, LLC scans are able to detect and display all network identities present within a given area.

Band

A wireless network transmits radio signals on certain ranges of frequencies, called bands. The most commons wireless bands are 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. Each band has multiple channels.

Channel

A wireless network uses radio signals and those signals can only be broadcast on certain bands and channels. Some wireless protocols (802.11b and 802.11g) use the 2.4 GHz band, while 802.11a uses the 5 GHz band and 802.11n uses both. Each country allows certain channels within each band to be used for wireless networks. For example, the United States uses channels 1, 6 and 11 in the 2.4 GHz band. SynoTek, LLC will provide your scan results by channel, so there can be a determination of which have the least interference.

Data Point

When performing a SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey, each time the analyst stops to click on the project map to take a scan, a data point is created. These points are also called measurements or sample points. Each data point provides critical information about the Wi-Fi signals and noise present in that location.

Decibel (dB)

A decibel is a unit used to measure the intensity of an electrical signal. SynoTek, LLC uses decibels to measure the Wi-Fi signal levels and other radio waves (noise) present during a scan. The decibel symbol is often qualified with a suffix, that indicates which reference quantity or frequency weighting function has been used. For example, dBm indicates a reference level of one milliwatt.

Discover Mode

A method for ynTek, LLC to take a quick survey of surrounding networks from one location, without having to do a full WiFi site survey.

Download Speed

Download speed is the rate that information can be downloaded from the Internet to a device connected to the network.

Heatmap

A heatmap is a map with an overlay of colors representing different values. After performing a site survey, the results are created as a heatmap. Red represents the best signal levels, and blue represents the worst. By looking at the heatmap SynoTek, LLC can identify areas of low signal strength. The heatmap can be modified by adjusting the minimum and maximum values, as well as by selecting individual networks or channels. SynoTek, LLC can provide several different types of heatmaps, including Signal Level, Signal-to-Noise Ratio and Signal-to-Interference Ratio.

Hidden Network

A hidden, or non-broadcasting, network is the one that has purposely been hidden from public view and is accessible only if you know its name and password. SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey is able to discover all hidden networks around the location area.

Interference

When applied to wireless networks, interference usually refers to other radio waves in the area that interfere with the wireless signal you’re trying to receive. The source of these radio waves can be other Wi-Fi networks, microwave ovens, cordless phones, Bluetooth devices, wireless video cameras, wireless game controllers, fluorescent lights, and more. In the case of SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey Signal-to-Interference Ratio, the interference is specific to co-channel interference from other radio transmitters.

MAC Address (Media Access Control Address)

A unique identifier assigned to network interfaces and used as a network address..

Multi-Floor Scanning

SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey utilizes zones for multiple floors to be linked, so that APs are displayed on the correct floors.

Network

A wireless local area network is called a WLAN. A wireless network allows two or more devices to communicate using radio waves instead of wires. At its simplest, a wireless network can consist of just a wireless access point (such as a wireless router) and a Wi-Fi-enabled computer. A SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can detect the name, strength and channel of all wireless networks and access points within range.

Noise

When applied to wireless networks, noise usually refers to other radio waves in the area that interfere with the wireless signal you’re trying to receive. The source of these radio waves can include other Wi-Fi networks, microwave ovens, cordless phones, Bluetooth devices, wireless video cameras, wireless game controllers, and fluorescent lights. A SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey has the ability to map both the Noise Level and Signal-to-Noise Level in a given area.

Overlapping Channels

See signal-to-interference ratio.

Router

A wireless router is type of wireless access point (AP) that allows a network of wireless devices to communicate. SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can scan an area and identify the quantity and signal strength of all wireless routers within range.

Sample Point or Sampling Point

See Data Point.

Scan

SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey performs a scan for wireless signals and interference each time a data point is created during a SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey. The term “scan” is also sometimes used as another name for a SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey.

Security Type

Wireless networks are protected from unauthorized access by certain security protocols. The most popular are WEP, WPA and WPA2.

Signal Level

Wireless signals are transmitted by radio waves. The signal level refers to the strength of those waves, usually measured in decibels (dBm). SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can map the Signal Level, Signal-to-Noise Ratio and Signal-to-Interference Ratio in a given area.

Signal-to-Interference Ratio

Similar to the signal-to-noise ratio, this ratio compares the Wi-FI signal level to the level of co-channel interference from other radio transmitters. SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can report the exact ratio at each data point taken, and can report the ratio of individual networks or channels as well.

Signal-to-Noise Ratio

This ratio compares the Wi-Fi signal level to the level of background noise. SynoTek, LLC WiFi Site Survey can report the exact ratio at each data point taken, and can report the ratio of individual networks or channels as well.

Upload Speed

The rate that information can be uploaded from a device connected to the network to the Internet.

Vendor

This is the manufacturer name of the access point or router.

Wireless Transmit Rate

The speed that data is being transmitted from an AP to a wireless device.