A couple of questions about WiFi signal strength...???

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by BIG DAVE, Oct 23, 2010.


    BIG DAVE Guest

    How accurate is Windows 7 at determining how strong a wireless signal
    you are receiving? For instance, I was at our library the other day
    and the strength of the signal varied between NO SIGNAL and POOR, and
    yet all the while I did some testing and I was downloading at speeds
    ranging from about 500kbs to as high as 2MB/sec. I had to be getting
    a signal.

    Now... for me, these speeds seem fast because I am used to using dial-
    up but someone mentioned that these are very poor speeds and not
    really "broadband".

    How are these speeds for WiF?. Granted, most of the time I was
    outside in the court at the library but still even when it was saying
    NO SIGNAL in my networking and sharing center I was still able to
    surf, watch YouTube etc... without any problems. Is the NO SIGNAL
    reading an error because I DID have signal?

    Thanks in advance

    BIG DAVE, Oct 23, 2010
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    chuckcar Guest

    It depends on four things what the maximum you can get.

    1. The actual speed the ISP is allowing the customer to have
    2. The speed the modem thinks the phone line etc can do.
    3. The maximum throughput of the wireless card with *no* signal
    4. The real world speed of the computer. That is both how fast
    the computer *can* run and how much it's bogged down doing other things
    than getting data from the wireless card.

    And FYI, anything over 56Kb/s is broadband by definition.
    chuckcar, Oct 23, 2010
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    Meat Plow Guest

    Obviously not too accurate.
    Meat Plow, Oct 23, 2010

    Anyone Guest

    The 'signal strength' indicator in windows is not a lab-instrument-
    quality measurement device. I didn't write the code, but I would bet its
    sole purpose is to deliver relative figure of merit, only.

    Transmission rate depends on your hardware and protocol. Have a look at
    some of the following:





    WiFi is capable of delivering from 54 to >200Mbps, again depending on
    your system, location and other factors. Highest transfer rates are
    uncommon. The usual circumstance is a bit less than those numbers.

    The system auto-negotiates for the "best" achievable transfer rate at log-
    in. 1 - 2Mhz isn't great, but it isn't bad either. The fact that your
    system reports a weak signal suggests that you could see much better data
    transfer rate if you were to (say) move closer to the access point
    antenna. But if you're not seeing a serious problem at 2Mhz then I would
    not worry about it.
    Anyone, Oct 23, 2010
  5. And since they usually oversell their bandwidth...
    If its centurylink then its gonna suck ass for sure...
    Like that wall with metal framing between you and the router...
    MY PR0N WONT LOAD!!!11111!!!!

    Only in Pussytown McRipoff Uhmurikuh and perhaps Tardville Canaduh.


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    / __/ |/ / / / / // // . . \\ \ |\ | / __ \ \ \ __\
    _\ \/ / /_/ / _ / \ / \ \| \| \ \_\ \ \__\ _\
    /___/_/|_/\____/_//_/ \[email protected]_/ \__|\__|\____/\____\_\
    §ñühw¤£f, Oct 24, 2010
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