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I've noticed that Wi-Fi signals are interfering with a product I'm developing, and I'd like to generate as much Wi-Fi noise as possible for testing purposes. Is there any better solution than, say, dragging large files from one computer to another?

Ideally I'd like one computer to just generate a stream of data ex nihilo and stream it to the other computer where it will just be obliterated, so it hogs bandwidth without reading or writing the hard drives. I'm in Windows, though, so there's no /dev/random or /dev/null.

And it would be cool if I could vary the bandwidth, too, but not necessary.

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Do you want noise in the WiFi band, or do you want a lot of WiFi traffic? – Fred Apr 1 '10 at 20:32
I'm not sure what the difference is. – endolith Apr 2 '10 at 16:31
up vote 1 down vote accepted

IPerf. SourceForge is the current home of it, and the current version is 2.0.4.

On one box, you run it in server mode:

iperf -s

On the other box, you run it in client mode, passing it the IP address of the iperf server to connect to:

iperf -c -t 9999

By default it does a 10-second TCP throughput test, so you'll want to add a time value in seconds like -t 9999. In TCP mode it tries to move as much data as it can, so it'll hog all the bandwidth it can. On the client you can specify other parameters like if you want it to use UDP instead (and if UDP, how much bandwidth to use), how often you want it to report intermediate performance results, and which direction(s) you want the data transfer to go.

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There's a tool called iperf which is designed to test network bandwidth, it has mac, linux, and windows versions, it may help in your case.

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Set up two wirelessly connected devices, and set one up with an Apache install. Then use the second to request mass amounts of information (i.e. large downloads, lots of page requests). To make it more efficient, use multiple other wireless devices to issue the request. One server (wirelessly connected) and 3-5 other computers also wirelessly connected requesting off of the server.

Otherwise you could simply walk onto a college campus / dormitory / internet cafe.

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If you want lots of noise in the wifiband, get some 2.4 GHz cordless phones, and make some Microwave Popcorn.

(Note: You will need 5 GHz phones for 8.02-11n.)

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