I do a lot of traveling, mostly in Mexico, where IT infrastructure isn't quite up to the standards I'm accustomed to. As someone who depends on reliable Internet for work, a recent trip to Mexico City left me quite frustrated. In the two hotels where I stayed, I ran into the same basic problem: Multiple APs, broadcasting the same ESSID, and in many cases on the same channel.
iwconfig to configure my wireless adapter manually was much more reliable than using the Debian Network Manager, but was still rather unreliable. Connectivity was often slow, or I simply lost connectivity, and had to manually reconnect--often with much effort.
So my question is: What can I do to improve my wireless connectivity to poorly configured networks?
I'm currently using a Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 chipset, but will probably be buying a new laptop in the next few months, so I will be considering this when buying a new laptop.
I'm interested in any possible solutions, including better software/drivers, better configuration, buying a new laptop with better wireless chipset, and/or buying a USB wireless adaptor, or even a completely separate device, such as a range-extending AP, antenna, or magic potion.