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Wireless Networks Thread, Community Wireless in Technical; Hello all, In one area of Birmingham, they've launched what appears to be a Community Wireless system which offers free ...
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    Michael's Avatar
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    Community Wireless

    Hello all,

    In one area of Birmingham, they've launched what appears to be a Community Wireless system which offers free broadband to residents in the area. This is great for the residents, but at the same time may be causing wireless problems at one of my schools.

    It's only a small school with a handful of HP Wireless Access Points which have worked perfectly for the last few years as ICT has grown. Now suddenly wireless connectivity is patchy in some areas of the building - particularly where this new Community Wireless system is stronger.

    It appears to be broadcasting on numerous channels within 2.4GHz, so manually specifying a channel or setting Access Points to Auto doesn't seem to make much difference.

    I performed numerous tests to diagnose the issue, including verifying the firmware is up-to-date, resetting Access Points, restoring to factory default and experimenting with different channels - mainly g/n in the 2.4GHz range. 5GHz could be an option, but not all devices support 5GHz and secondly these Access Points do not support dual 2.4GHz/5GHz functionality.

    So other than performing more tests or talking to the people that run/manage the Community Wireless, what are my options? The problem at the moment appears to be isolated to one particular room, with the rest of the building functioning OK - the Community Wireless is visible, but weaker. Many thanks

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    Michael's Avatar
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    Just to update this post. I've now setup one affected classroom with 5GHz (but still maintaining the same SSID) and put in place compatible notebooks and iPads. The results are excellent and speed and quality are better than expected.

    Will leave it like this until next week to get some concrete evidence it definitely solves the problem!

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