Wi-Fi is a wireless technology that permits diplomacies to connect over a wireless signal. Computers use Wi-Fi to connect to wireless networks. Wi-Fi is measured in decibel milliwatts(dBm), which is expressed in negative values. When a user is very close to the access point, the signal strength is about -30dBm, which is the maximum signal strength. Anything lower than -50dBm is excellent signal strength. A good and reliable signal strength ranges at -60dBm. Above -67dBm is the minimum signal strength on a secure connection and signal strength. -70dBm is not much stable but can be used for sending and receiving emails and light browsing, thus not strong enough for more services. -80 and -90dBm are unreliable and inadequate connection levels.
How to Measure Your Wi-Fi Signal Strength
A Wi-Fi scanner application is an ideal tool for measuring the received signal strength at a particular time and location. Use of a scanner gives an accurate received signal strength indicator (RSSI). A user with the MAC operating system can view the received signal strength without downloading and installing additional applications. For the Mac operating system, use the Alt key on the keyboard and click on the Wi-Fi button on the status menu. When a list of available networks pops up, select the name of the Wi-Fi you are connected to and details about the connection, including the RSSI information will be displayed. However, to map the signal in a broader radius maybe around the rooms in a home or apartments, a heatmapping tool works better than Wi-Fi scanner. A heatmapping tool helps the user see the coverage of the wireless network in different parts of their area of interest.
Wi-Fi strength relies mostly on the strength of the radio signal. On the path between a connected device and a wireless access point, the signal strong point in every path regulates the degree of data accessible on a link. Different utilities collect different samples for one connection. Values may change from three bars to five bars depending on timing tools used to give an overall rating.
For Windows users, there is a built-in tool used in controlling wireless network connections. This utility is quick and easy to measure Wi-Fi strength. For a user, one can click on the network icon on the taskbar to see all networks available and the particular wireless network that is connected to a user’s device. Five bars indicate excellent connection while one bar is an unfortunate network. The same information can be found on the control panel of the setting, select network and internet, and the network page. Connect on the wireless network and take the connect/disconnect option to see the Wi-Fi strength. The other option is to use commands on the CMD window. CMD requires no new applications to be installed since it is quick and straightforward. Connect to the Wi-Fi you testing on and execute a command (netsh WLAN show interface). Detailed information about the network will be displayed. These include radio type, physical address GUID, authentication, state, network type, SSID, cipher, BSSID, signal, receive and transmit rate, and the channel. A message is represented in percentage values since the percentage is accurate for measuring strengths. Running the command on the CMD several times can lead to changes n signal values.
How to get a strong Wi-Fi Signal
Once a wireless connection has been measured at a specific spot and concluded to be weak, there are a few things that can be done to improve Wi-Fi signal strength. However, it is not right to adjust the signal strength by building a single antenna, replacing the antenna booster or any other device that collects the waves. Such actions weaken the coverage further, may incur damages to them, and this may lead to breaking of the law. Several factors affect the received signal strength, and hiding an access point is a way of blocking signals.
To improve the Wi-Fi network, choose a hotspot for the router to avoid metals and other devices that release electromagnetic waves. Another option could be establishing the newest multiple access points system to form a mesh network. The system uses various units to talk to each other and expand the area under coverage. A reliable connection is significant between the satellite units and the central unit. The second unit should be placed during the room with poor Wi-Fi network. Again, update the router to protect against malware attacks. Get a robust antenna since all antenna use similar RP-SMA connector. A user can also opt to buy a repeater which is also known as an extender or booster, which amplifies Wi-Fi signal and transmits it. A booster is about a hundred dollars and can be installed within a short period. Remove Wi-Fi leeches by using protected and encrypted passwords to protect your network and devices connected to the same network.
Other methods of improving Wi-Fi signals may comprise switching to different Wi-Fi channels that can be broadcasted by the router. NetSpot is a Wi-Fi analysis tool that can be used to survey the best connection. Moreover, monitor bandwidth-hungry clients and app. This leads to decreased speeds while using the services. Choose a router that supports the quality of service, which allows users to focus on particular apps over the others. Quality of service will enable users to have online games without interfering with YouTube viewers who could be using at least 1440p. Again, choose advanced Wi-Fi technologies such as IEEE 802.11 ac as compared to IEEE 802.11 b, g. Ensure the router and other devices connected to the Wi-Fi supports the advanced router.
Users can also use the latest wireless frequency, which ranges a 5GHz which offers faster data rates at short distances. Reboot the devices in case of failures. A simple reboot improves Wi-Fi speeds. A reboot clears the memory of routers to enable updates to install. On mobile devices, there is an internet section under phone setting that can be used to show Wi-Fi strength. Alternatively, there is a free application such as Wi-Fi analyzer for android phones.