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Slow WIFI bandwidth

Posted on 2013-11-15
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Last Modified: 2013-11-15
Hello - we have users in an office environment that connect via Cisco 1240AG access points, and we find that the performance of their backups and accessing network resources is severely degraded.  If I change them over to 100-base Ethernet, and off of WIFI, they're speed increases 10 fold.  I'm looking for ways to improve the WIFI speed, because this is the type of connection the users prefer.  

Thanks for your help
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Question by:Damian_Gardner
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by:sentner
sentner earned 350 total points
ID: 39652373
WiFi has limited bandwidth, which is generally shared for all users on the access point.  The speed decreases for users based on several factors, including distance to the access point they're connected to, any obstacles or interference from other devices, and how many other users are on the same access point.  If the backups are happening concurrently, you'll see a much greater degradation of speed over WiFi than over wired ethernet.  

In your case, you've got either 802.11A/G, which limits you to a maximum of 54Mbps under perfect conditions (one user, close to the WiFi point with no other devices interfering).  

One thing you can do is upgrade your WiFi access points to newer hardware with 802.11N or 802.11AC (check the laptops to see what level of WiFi they support).  That'd give you much faster data rates and distance.
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M Roe earned 150 total points
ID: 39652385
That device is only going to run about 54 Mbps.  You need to get a 802.11n device to increase speed for this issue.
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by:Damian_Gardner
ID: 39652414
Ok - I was afraid of that - that it was a limitation of both the hardware, as well as the shared access factor.  Ok - thanks guys.
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by:Craig Beck
ID: 39652416
The connection would run at 22Mbps total at best using 802.11g, and around 24Mbps using 802.11a.  That's in a lab, with no other wifi devices in the area.  Radio throughput is always stated for a wireless connection, although data throughput is significantly lower.

If you're shifting large amounts of data over the AP you'll see significantly slower speeds if multiple users are connected to the AP.  Therefore it's not unusual for a wireless user to only see ~12Mbps data throughput at best, and even that's being optimistic.
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by:Damian_Gardner
ID: 39652440
Whoops - I forgot to ask one thing - is there a way to force a user off of one WAP and onto another one?
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