Dec 01

How to validate your Access Point location?

In the past I have preconfigured and marked the access points (AP) before giving them to the people installing them. My last install there were to many APs to preconfigure. I provided the cabling vendor with the location of each AP and what number that AP should be on that floor. I had explained that I needed to know the MAC of the AP for each AP number. I had the contractors mark the AP with a number before they installed them in the drop ceiling. When the cabling guys were done, they provided me a list of AP names and MAC addresses.

Based on the MAC I named the APs in the system, then placed them on the map. When I walked around, I noticed that AP 23 was where AP 5 was supposed to be. I was now concerned that the APs were in the wrong location and I wouldn’t know what AP was where. To validate the placement I used the Ekahau Site Survey software.

The facility I was in had three floors. I shut off two of the floors so I only had one floor of APs enabled. I then loaded a map of that floor plan into the Ekahau software. After adjusting the size, borders and survey area I was ready to do a survey. I walked around the floor performing the survey. There were many APs that I walked directly under and others that were in rooms off of the hallway that I could not get close to due to locked doors.

After finishing the survey the Ekahau software provided me a list of AP names and where it thought the APs were located. The Ekahau software correctly placed the APs that I was able to walk under. The APs that were in the locked rooms were off a little bit, but very close. The software allowed me to easily position the APs on the map in their correct location. After performing a couple physical checks on the APs, I felt that the AP placement in the Ekahau software was reliable.

Through this survey I was able to find a couple of the APs that I walked under were in the wrong location. It looked like the contractors got the APs mixed up because the APs were in backward locations.

The Ekehaue software saved me a tremendous amount of time validating the location of the new APs. I have a couple more buildings to install wireless in and I feel confident that I can rely on Ekahaue not only for coverage and signal strength, but for validating the AP placement also!!

I highly recommend the Ekahau Site Survey software to you.

What has your experience been with the Ekahau Site Survey software?