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I found this neat and dead-simple DIY project for boosting a WiFi AP's antenna range, and I was wondering how I could actually do a before/after benchmark.

Are there any free tools that could test the quality of a WiFi network? I'm thinking of walking around my appartment with my netbook in hand and eventually end up with a 'coverage map'.

Most searches I tried ended up in some wardriving tool or another - they don't seem to fit for my purpose, but correct me if I'm wrong.

What I'd like the tool to have (a subset is fine, but the more, the better): - show the instantaneous signal strength, and not just with a 1-5 bars resolution as Windows does. I want hard numbers.

  • do a throughput test (U/L, D/L). For this, I guess I could use a 2nd computer on the same subnet, wired directly to the AP, and try a large file transfer.

  • do a latency check on the local LAN

So, any suggestions?

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Tried ping? . –  Hello71 Aug 20 '10 at 22:59
    
Ping by itself doesn't saturate the connection. I could try a ping while doing a big file transfer, but it would be nice to have a program do the manual work. –  Cristi Diaconescu Aug 21 '10 at 18:29
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2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

I have always liked inSSIDer or Chanalyzer from MetaGeek.

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Channalyzer, if I understand correctly, only works with their 2.4GHz analyzer USB dongles. However, inSSIDer also works with builtin WiFi cards and is AWESOME! –  Cristi Diaconescu Aug 23 '10 at 21:45
    
+1 for a good solution on Windows/Mac (?); -1 for not briefing the Unix/Linux community that there isn't a native version. –  bluenote10 May 14 at 11:52
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iPerf, perhaps ?

Iperf was developed by NLANR/DAST as a modern alternative for measuring maximum TCP and UDP bandwidth performance. Iperf allows the tuning of various parameters and UDP characteristics. Iperf reports bandwidth, delay jitter, datagram loss.


Xirrus WiFi tool is another option alt text

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your IPerf link is slightly wrong and I don't have enough rep to edit it. –  Cristi Diaconescu Aug 21 '10 at 18:30
    
@cristi Fixed the link, thanks for telling me :) –  Sathya Aug 21 '10 at 20:51
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