High Performance Wireless LAN Infrastructure Computer Science Essay

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Robust, high-performance wireless LAN infrastructure is needed to create an engaging interactive learning environment in a virtual smart classroom. This infrastructure needs to provide ubiquitous wireless coverage throughout the area in which a virtual smart classroom might be in session. This coverage needs to offer sufficient bandwidth to reliably deliver the intended data, voice, and video applications to all students, simultaneously, even in densely populated classrooms and lecture halls. Additionally, and with an eye towards privacy for students and teachers alike, the network needs to control network access and secure transmitted data.

Achieiving these objectives requires both capable Wi-Fi infrastructure equipment and proper network design. Providing reliable Wi-Fi access in typical school environments is no mean feat. Radio is an open medium that must be shared and is susceptible to time and location varying interference. The 802.11b/g standard provides three or four useable 20MHz channels for signal transmission, whereas 802.11a and 802.11n offer twenty-three 20MHz channels - eleven if one uses higher capacity 40MHz 802.11n channels ( channel availability varies by region). The chart below presents the available channels in the 5GHz band.

Sophisticated Wi-Fi infrastructure automatically adjusts Wi-Fi access point channels and transmits power levels to optimize performance dynamically in any given setting, for any given level and type of interference, and in the event of an AP failure. Automatic optimization reduces IT overhead and ensures that the network always performs at maximum capability.



1.0 Background

When we talked about Wi-Fi, the first thing that we should understand is short wireless fidelity. Its can be used generally when referring to any type of 802.11 network, whether 802.11b,802.11a, 802.11g, dualband and many more. 802.11 refer to a family of specifications developed by the IEEE for wireless LAN technology. 802.11 specify an over the air interface between a wireless clients, a base station or between two wireless clients. Wi-Fi networks use radio technologies to provide secure, reliable, fast wireless connectivity.

A Wi-Fi network can be used to connect computers to each other, to Internet, and to wired networks (which use IEEE 802.3 or Ethernet). Wi-Fi network operate in the unlicensed 2.4 and 5 Ghz radio bands, with an 11 Mbps (802.11b) or 54 Mbps (802.11a) data rate. There are many reasons why researcher use Wi-Fi in their research which first, flexibility which mean quick and easy setup in temporary or permanent place. Then is freedom, which means people can work from any location that the people can get the signal.

Today, the wireless technology is moving forward to the future. In computer networking, that we are called a wireless access point (WAP) is a device that allows wireless communication devices to connect to a wireless network using Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or related standards. The WAP usually connects to a wired network, and can relay data between the wireless devices (such as computers or printers) and wired devices on the network. Wireless access points (APs or WAPs) are specially configured nodes on wireless local area networks (WLANs). Access points act as a central transmitter and receiver of WLAN radio signals.

Access points used in home or small business networks are generally small, dedicated hardware devices featuring a built-in network adapter, antenna, and radio transmitter. Access points support Wi-Fi wireless communication standards.

Prior to wireless networks, setting up a computer network in a business, home, or school often required running many cables through walls and ceilings in order to deliver network access to all of the network-enabled devices in the building. With the advent of the Wireless Access Point, network users are now able to add devices that access the network with few or no cables. Today's WAPs are built to support a standard for sending and receiving data using radio frequencies rather than cabling. Those standards, and the frequencies they use are defined by the IEEE. Most WAPs use IEEE 802.11 standards.

The good news is that access points are cheap and plentiful. The bad news is that it's a free-for-all out there. In a campus setting, each access point is a universe unto itself, with authentication and bandwidth management practically up for grabs.

With wireless LAN gaining greater traction in the enterprise world, analysts say the time may be ripe for the adoption of a family of products known as gateway devices. These devices manage the vital action going at an access point, giving a network operator a simplified way to control access and security issues, along with the ability to manage bandwidth allotment.

With the approval of the 802.11 standard by the IEEE in 1997,wireless LANs (WLANs) began a slow entry into enterprise networks. The limited data rates of the original 802.11 standard, only 1 and 2 Mbps, limited the widespread adoption of the technology. 802.11 found wide deployment in vertical applications, such as inventory management, point of sale, and transportation management. Pioneering enterprises began to deploy 802.11, mostly for experimentation.

In 1999, the IEEE approved the 802.11a and 802.11b amendments to the base standard, increasing the available data rate to 54 and 11 Mbps, respectively, and expanding to a new radio band. This removed one of the significant factors holding back adoption of 802.11 in large enterprise networks. These large deployments were bound by the definition and functionality of an 802.11 Access Point (AP), as described in the 802.11 standard. The techniques required extensive use of layer 2 bridging and widespread VLANs to ensure the proper operation of higher layer protocols. Deployments of 802.11 WLANs as

large as several thousand APs have been described.

Large deployments of 802.11 WLANs have introduced several problems that require solutions. The limitations on the scalability of bridging should come as no surprise to the networking community, as similar limitations arose in the early 1980s for wired network bridging during the expansion and interconnection of wired local area networks. This document will describe the problems introduced by the large-scale deployment of 802.11 WLANs in enterprise networks.

1.1 Problem Statement

Large WLAN deployments introduce several problems. First, each AP is an IP-addressable device requiring management, monitoring, and control. Deployment of a large WLAN will typically double the number of network infrastructure devices that require management. This presents a significant additional burden to the network administration resources and is often a hurdle to adoption of wireless technologies, particularly because the configuration of each access point is nearly identical to the next.This near-sameness often leads to misconfiguration and improper operation of the WLAN.

Second, distributing and maintaining a consistent configuration throughout the entire set of access points in the WLAN is problematic. Access point configuration consists of both long-term static information (such as addressing and hardware settings) and more dynamic provisioning information (such as individual WLAN settings and security parameters). Large WLAN installations that have to update dynamic provisioning information in all the APs in the WLAN require a prolonged phase-over time. As each AP is updated, the WLAN will not have a single, consistent configuration.

Third, dealing effectively with the dynamic nature of the WLAN medium itself is difficult. Due to the shared nature of the wireless medium (shared with APs in the same WLAN, with APs in other WLANs, and with devices that are not APs at all), parameters controlling the wireless medium on each AP must be monitored frequently and modified in a coordinated fashion to maximize WLAN performance.This must be coordinated among all the access points, to minimize the interference of one access point with its neighbors. Manually monitoring these metrics and determining a new, optimum configuration for the parameters related to the wireless medium is a task that takes significant time and effort.

Fourth, securing access to the network and preventing installation of unauthorized access points is challenging. Physical locations for access points are often difficult to secure since their location must often be outside of a locked network closet or server room. Theft of an access point, with its embedded secrets, allows a thief to obtain access to the resources secured by those secrets.

1.2 Objectives

The objective of this project is to develop software that will provide predictive plan in order to install and manage the access point based on coverage and speed, hence be able to help network engineer to design and install the access point.

1.3 Scope

The project is focusing on:

Identify the obstacle that will reduce signal of access point

Network coverage and speed

1.4 The Significant of Research

This project will provide benefits to Industry leader with significant R&D investments. Can Built to support future mobility services that will help engineers in managing the access point

This project will benefit the network engineer because the software built to support future mobility services that will help engineers in managing the access point and indirectly will help to make the internet and networking service become more efficiency. All the data and map layout plan of the location that need to install access point will be sent to the network engineer. With this, the engineer make predictive plan to design and install the access point. From the headquarters or any places, the engineer able to make the design phases without has to make site visit. A lot of information can be received. With data given, company able to analyze and study on how to improve their service well. For example, they can plan a new route in order to save time on picking up the passengers or allowing the bus to reach the destination more quickly.

For the passengers, this information can be use so that they can plan on which bus to use when travel. By knowing which route that been covered by the bus, it will make their travel more easy especially for the tourist.



2.0 Introduction

This chapter is about explaining the detail about the project. In order to understand on what to achieve and the way to get it.

What is Access points?

Wireless access points APs are specially configured nodes on wireless local area networks (WLANs). In a wireless local area network (WLAN), access points are a station that transmits and receives data and indirectly act as a central transmitter and receiver of WLAN radio signals.

Access points (APs) connect user to another user in a network, and it used in home or small business network. It also can serve as the point of interconnection between the WLAN. . Each access point are also built to serve multiple users within a defined network area, as people move beyond the range of one access point, they are automatically will connected over to the next access point. A small WLAN may only require only a single access point

What is wireless antenna

Omni antennas indoor antennas

Active antennas

Antenna is a part of a transmitting or receiving system which is designed to radiate or to receive electromagnetic waves". An antenna can also be viewed as a transitional structure (transducer) between free-space and a transmission line (such as a coaxial line). An important property of an antenna is the ability to focus and shape the radiated power in space e.g.: it enhances the power in some wanted directions and suppresses the power in other directions

Omni directional Antennas.

The omni directional antenna radiates or receives equally well in all directions. It is also called the "non-directional" antenna because it does not favor any particular direction. Figure 1 shows the pattern for an omni directional antenna, with the four cardinal signals. This type of pattern is commonly associated with verticals, ground planes and other antenna types in which the radiator element is vertical with respect to the Earth's surface.

The key factor to note is that for receivers all four signals (or signals from any direction, for that matter) are received equally well. For transmitters, the radiated signal has the same strength in all directions. This pattern is useful for broadcasting a signal to all points of the compass (as when calling "CQ"), or when listening for signals from all points.

2.2.2 Telex 2.4 GHz, 2 dBi Diversity Omni Wireless Antenna (2406AA)

The 2406 wireless antenna was designed for WLAN applications. Two omni directional antennas are mounted side by side in the same housing. Each antenna operates independently in a space diversity configuration. The wireless antennas are designed to operate throughout the ISM band of frequencies 2400 MHz to 2483 MHz. Each antenna has a gain of 2 dBi when measured at it's RP-TNC plug coax connector. Clips on the back of the antenna allow it to be mounted to a ceiling tile support.


Frequency Range

2400 - 2484 MHz


less than 2.0:1, 1.7:1 Nominal

Nominal Impedance

50 ohms


2 dBi

Half-power Elevation Beamwidth

70 degrees

Elevation Beam-tilt

0 +/-3 degrees


Vertical, linear

Maximum Power

10 watts


5.4 x 2.9 x 0.9 inches


0.36 lbs

Mounting Method

Clip to ceiling tile support


RP-TNC male

2.2.3 Telex 2.4 GHz, 5 dBi Dual Space Diversity Omni Antenna (2427AA)

WLAN Dual Space Diversity Omni Antenna has two antennas that are mounted side by side in the same housing. Each antenna operates independently in a space diversity configuration. These indoor wireless antennas are designed to operate throughout the ISM band of frequencies from 2400 to 2483 MHz. This indoor wireless antenna features omni-directional patterns with each having a gain of 5 dBi. The antenna is perfect for wireless access points or bridges that use a diversity antenna system. Wall mount brackets are provided, which allow azimuth adjustment of the wireless antenna.


Frequency Range

2.4 - 2.484 GHz


1.5:1 nominal

2.0:1 maximum

Nominal Impedance

50 ohms


5 dBi


Linear - Vertical


14" x 5" x 1.18"

Connector Type

RP-TNC male x 2

Wall Mount

hardware included

Related Research

Worldwide Enterprise Wireless LAN Equipment 2005-2009 Forecast", IDC, May 2005.

The workspace

Consider the space that the wireless network will serve. How will it be used? What work areas, rooms, and hallways must be supported by the wireless infrastructure? Using AutoCAD or a similar tool, create a diagram of the work environment.


Inventory of site elements and obstacles


Natural elements = such as water, trees, and bushes

Types of floor


More focus on the security solution

We focus on the coverage and speed

2.3.2 Protocols for Self-Organization of a Wireless Sensor Network by Katayoun Sohrabi, Jay Gao, Vishal Ailawadhi and Gregory J Pottie


Describe an architecture for self-organizing wireless sensor-networks

Design challenges encountered in building wireless sensor networks may be categorized under three classes: hardware design, wireless networking, and applications.


More focus at the protocols to archieve goal by providing high quality of service in wireless networks .

Aruba networks

The workspace

The purpose of this project is to provide systems engineers, technical support engineers, and site survey teams with the tools needed to conduct a successful site survey and plan for the implementation of an Aruba wireless network.


Conduct a physical site survey

Select the proper APs and antennas for the deployment.


Can only perform an initial environment evaluation (indoors only) such as lecture hall, warehouse, office and etc .

The software can only be use with their product only

The OLPC-Nepal project

The workspace

Developing freely accessible, open-source Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-based educational teaching-learning materials . OLE's responsibilities have ranged from the distribution of laptops to the training of teachers and the technical support. The OLPC Nepal movement has needed to develop its deployment plans, school server architecture.


Select the proper antennas for the deployment

such as omni-directional antenna and Active Antenna


Cannot verify the element and obstacles that will reduce the radio frequency signal

More focus types of antennas.

2.3.5 LRNI

The workspace

The purpose of this project is to provide multi-purpose close proximity and for long range up to 1,000 feet. Specific coverage areas can be configured for indoor and out door use. Offer a wide read field and high-speed RF signal conversion for optimal communication between RFID tags and RFID readers.


Give the suggestion and choice of appropriate types of antennas in deploying wireless network

Have multiple choice of antennas

Discuss about the pattern of wireless antennas


These products only focus in types of antennas and its pattern.

WLAN Coverage Estimator software only have two or three variety of famous used of antennas because we focus more on coverage and speed of network rather than antennas




This chapter will explain the methodology or a step-by-step phase that will be used in developing this project in order to archive goals. For the development in this software, the methodology will be using System Development Life Cycle (SDLC). The progress or updates for the software from initiation to completion is explicitly staged into six major phases. There are consisting Preliminary Study, Planning, Design, Implementation, Testing and Documentation.


After the initiation process, the scope, problem statement and objective of the project were defined and verify. After research have been done and every related source involve such as journals, articles, whether from internet or research thesis will be use as references to support this project.


In this phase includes a detailed study of the needs of this software. Data gathering, meeting with network engineer in persons and research methodology will be use during this phase.

Through data collection method, the concept of coverage and speed must be clear first and all element that related to this concept will be collected and to be understand. This is important in order to gain a clearer view for the prediction in order to manage the best networks design in installing access point.

During the meeting with the network engineer, it's important to understand the benefits, feasibility and implementation of this service from the business perspectives. Besides that, it's important to take note on constructive opinions and advices for the potential implementation methods and problems in order to make the entire service to be more reliable and cost effective.

To gain better understanding of the view on how the system will work, research methodology will be use. Below are some methodologies for us in conducting researches in order to collect useful information

a. Website resources

Through World Wide Web many online articles, web pages and potential implementation sample solutions can be found. For example,

b. Books

Textbooks and reference books from UiTM University provide much useful information related to the project.

c. Online Publication

There is a lot of information available on the internet. By search engines (example: Google and Yahoo), useful online publication can be collected easily. The online publications that been collected consisting journals, whitepapers, and thesis and so on.


The system framework will be done based on the information gathered and references from the previous phase.

Project Framework

Figure above shows that the network engineer needs to get the map layout of the building from the person that in charge. The engineer needs to define the object and obstacle using the software to get the best design. The reliability of this software prevents the network engineers from wasting time on waiting and do site survey.


Overview of the project design

Firstly, the map layout of the building or office must be send to the engineer that in charge in installing the wireless access point. After that the engineer must analyze the information and element that is given with the map layout. After that ,the engineer have to import the map layout into the heat map .At the heat map the engineer can make a floor plan of the area to be deployed, assign properties to objects in the drawing such as walls and floors.

After that, the WLAN Coverage Estimator software wills use the heat map to make a predictive plan so the coverage and speed meets the requirement of client. At this phase the software will help the engineers to see the pattern of antennas that suit the map layout. The software can give the suggestion and choice of appropriate types of antennas in deploying wireless network

After all have been defined, the software will come out the best result to manage the access point installation. The result will be a guidance to engineer for the access point installation.










In this stage, the assignment is to implement the software in real case problem environment. The engineers will import the map layout using the heat map, and then the engineer will used the WLAN Coverage Estimator software to make an predictive plan to install the access point. The result will be monitor after all element and obstacle are defined.


After the implementation phase is done, the prototype will be run for testing to ensure the final result is correct and all related devices and software are working. Reliability will be the main aspect in this phase.

For reliability testing, two people will be testing the software in the same time. The result will be monitor at the graphical interface after all process had been executed. Each of the result will be analyze to ensure that this software will give the best predictive plan in order give the maximum coverage and speed of network. Every error of the result will be taken into consideration. After some refinement, it will be assumed that this software is fully functional.

PHASE 6: Documentation

After all the coding and testing has been done. The last phase is to complete the documentation. There are many types of method used in this project in order to gather all required information. SDLC model was chosen as this project methodology. There were 5 important phases in this methodology each with activities that helps in the development of this project. This phase is very important for the future to make as reference and also as backup to this project.


Below are the lists of hardware and software requirement for this project.


The hardware requirement to complete this project

Area of Utilization


Personal Computer

- Processor AMD Phenom 2 3.00 g


100GB HDD space


The hardware requirement to complete this project

Area of Utilization

Software Use

Operating System

Microsoft Windows 7

Visual Basic

Visual Basic Studio


Mozilla Firefox

Map Layout



Figure below show the project plan/timeline for this project


This project provides so much benefit for engineers and any one can also learn how to manage the access point that need to be install. It increases efficiency and reliability. By reducing a lot of man power, it improves accuracy and consistency. By providing all above benefit, the network engineer mostly can do the installation part faster without any interference.



This chapter defined the results and findings of the development of WLAN Coverage Estimator software. The results and findings are based on objectives of the project which consists of all interface of WLAN Coverage Estimator software.

4.2 WLAN Coverage Estimator software

This part is the development of WLAN Coverage Estimator software. In this phase, the software have their own process flow that user of this software should follow. The following are the interface of the software.

The first step, the user must recognize the entire button and the function of the software to facilitate the tasks to be carried out shortly. The following are the function of the software.

Pointer - use the pointer to select and move objects in the drawing area

Access Point - select the access point

Obstacles - use this tool to draw and obstacles to signify a wall in your environment such as




Trashcan - select an object in the drawing area and click the delete button to remove the object

Heat map - A heat map is a graphical representation of data where the values taken by a variable in a two-dimensional map

Redraw - according to the floor layout scale

Transmission power - to control the power consumption and speed

Calculate estimated cost - cost budget that will be charged

The following is a sample of floor layout that will be used in the software. The floor layout will be used in jpeg format

The second step is to set scale that are provided for the purpose of knowing the exact kind of situation.After redraw button are click, the drawing grid will reset and all object drawn

The following are the sample of using a redraw button (scale) .The scale are set to (800 * 480).In the heat map, the range from point to another point is 100 feet's,

The third steps are uploading the floor plan into the software by clicking to the upload image, and then a new window will pop up for searching the floor plan image.

Here is an example picture of the floor layout is finished uploading.

Then the next step are defining the type of obstacle such as :-

Concrete - that will drop a signal about 50%

Wood - that will drop a signal about 30%

Glass - that will drop a signal about 10%

The following are the example of defining the obstacle

Next steps are choosing the best access point. When clicking the access point button it will issue three types of access point such as:-

SMC eliteConnect

Price Range: RM 500 - 600

Manufacturer: SMC Networks, Inc

Part number: SMC2555W-AG2

Device Type Wireless access point

Width 8.59 in

Depth 5.41 in

Height 1.29 in

Weight 1.64 lbs

Max range indoors 260 feet

Cisco 1000 Series Lightweight Access Point AIR

Price Range: RM 220 - 250

Manufacturer: Cisco

Part number: AIR-AP1010-A-K9

Device Type Wireless access point

Width 6 in

Depth 4.4 in

Height 1.6 in

Weight 1.3 lbs

Max range indoors 180 feet

Cisco 1000 Series Lightweight Access Point AIR

Price Range: RM 150 - 160

Manufacturer: Cisco

Part number: AIR-AP1010-A-K9

Device Type Wireless access point

Width 2.4 in

Depth 3.4 in

Height 0.7 in

Weight 2.2 oz

Max range indoors 105 feet

The following are types of access point.

The following are using a transmission power. By reducing the transmission power it will increase the speed of network and indirectly the coverage will decrease .But if increasing the transmission power it will slow the speed of network and indirectly the coberage will increase. The following are the example.

The trashcan is for deleting the item that want to remove

The calculation estimate button is for calculation the overall cost that will be charged




Conclusion recalls what had been done throughout the project and analyses the success of the project. The conclusion covers the overall finding of this project. In addition,suggestion and recommendation for further exploration and development of the project is also provided at the end of the chapter. The recommendation is to determine on ways to improvise this project in relation of future work. The future work can be done by using this project as guideline for

those whom interested in similar project.


As a conclusion, the development of WLAN Coverage Estimator software will provide the best predictive and analyze solution to reduce all the possible problem that has been stated above. The software will act as the main mechanism that serve a better way for the user of this software to make predictive plan and can make the best solution to find the best place to install the access point.

There are many obvious benefits to using a WLAN design, most of which hinge around the problems with typical wired LANs. Convenience is certainly a benefit to using wireless communications. With wireless, as long as you are in range of an AP, you have a connection to the network. This is a tremendous advantage to mobile sales forces, personnel performing physical inventories of a warehouse, or IT professionals.

Site surveys are a critical part of any WLAN design. These surveys help the design team identify placement locations for APs, determine how many APs are needed, identify possible areas of RF interference, and determine the expected range of the WLAN along with a slew of other important information.With the amount of time and effort required to complete these surveys, they can be very costly and are typically outsourced to an outside contractor that has a great deal of experience and access to RF scanning equipment. This process is time consuming, mostly due to the fact that a great deal of guesswork is involved in the initial planning followed by modifications to improve performance post-implementation. The WLAN Coverage Estimator software has some features that help make this part of the design phase much easier.The wireless-aware framework allows the network administrator to perform their own site surveys using in-house staff, thus cutting down on cost and time. Using these tools, administrators can follow a simple 5-step process to perform a complete site survey in the WLAN environment.


The WLAN Coverage Estimator software is just a concept of how to manage a network design .Therefore, in order to improve this project and make it more worthwhile, there are several areas that have been recognized as recommendations of future enhancements.

Identify more obstacle that will reduce signal of access point in so that the predictive and analyze phase are more reliable and effective

Add more types of access point so that it can provide more option in order to manage the access point installation


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