Networking & Wireless
Fluke Intros WiFi Troubleshooting Tool
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Fluke Networks has released a handheld device for troubleshooting wireless networks. The AirCheck WiFi Tester lets users verify and troubleshoot 802.11a/b/g/n network availability, connectivity, channel usage, and security settings. The tool can help identify coverage and connectivity problems, find unauthorized or rogue access points (APs), see overloaded networks and channels, detect interference, and validate security settings.
The tester, which has a five-hour battery life, displays information on a 2.8-inch color LCD screen and uses a menu-based system navigated with five buttons. The tester is about the size of a telephone handset and comes with software that manages all AirCheck profiles and the information collected from multiple AirCheck testers. The user can save the results of testing sessions and download them to AirCheck Manager software via a USB port for report generation or archiving.
"Solving WiFi issues can be a challenging, frustrating, and sometimes bordering on impossible task," said Peter Rysavy, WiFi consultant for Rysavy Research. "AirCheck takes the mystery out of the WiFi environment, enabling practically any network professional, regardless of their WiFi knowledge, to quickly diagnose and solve the most common problems."
According to Brad Pritchett, IT manager of Eastside Catholic School in Sammamish, WA, the use of the device in troubleshooting wireless network problems "could easily save one or two full workweeks over the course of the year."
The device is scheduled to be released during the second quarter of 2010. The company said it would be priced at $1,995.
An interactive virtual demo of AirCheck is available on the Fluke Web site.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.