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I have the inssider software from metageek for inspecting wifi networks. On the webpage though it also advertises a product called wi-spy. It is a USB device that has an antenna.

What benefits does this USB device bring? Does it only provide better range? But why would range be an issue since the inssider program can be used with a laptop which is moving around? Why is range an issue, to know about possible frequency collisions?

Does it maybe provide the ability to pick up a greater range of frequencies? And why would this be an issue as channel frequencies should not interfere?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Wi-spy appears to be a hardware device that analyzes radio signals. The intent isn't really to boost wi-fi signals per-say, what it does is provide you with insight about which frequencies are crowded, and have a lot of competition from other devices, or simply a lot of interference.

You then avoid those frequencies (wireless channels) when setting up a wifi network for better performance. (including better signal propagation and speed)

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what is happening when there are frequencies which are 'crowded'? Are they the same frequencies coming from different sources? – Vass Oct 13 '11 at 12:33
The short answer is yes, but remember that not all sources send at the same time, or with the same signal strength. The desired equipment may be able to "override" the strength of a farther away signal, or you may get perfect signal at some times and not others. Particularly insidious is that if you move away from the desired source (in the direction of the further away source) then your signal quality will degrade VERY FAST as your desired signal strength decreases, and the undesired source's strength increases. – SplinterReality Oct 14 '11 at 1:13

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