System Tray Signal Strength -vs- Wireless Properties Strength

Discussion in 'Wireless Networking' started by Guest, Apr 5, 2005.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    After upgrading to XP SP2, my wireless signal strength shown in the system
    tray shows "2" bars and calls it "Low". When I view all available wireless
    networks, my network in the list shows "5" bars and "Excellent".

    Why the two different strength levels? Which is correct?
    Guest, Apr 5, 2005
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  2. As you already know, signal strength is a dynamic value that location and
    environmental factors can affect. Here is why you have an acute
    observation: ;)

    1) The View Available Wireless Networks list includes a snapshot of all the
    networks in your vicinity. The signal strength displayed in this list is
    captured just before the list is presented to you. When you open the
    application open, the only ways to update signal strength in that list is to
    inititiate a refresh by either clicking the 'refresh' option in the upper
    left hand corner or by connecting to a wireless network.

    2) The system tray icon displays a current signal strength when you hover
    the mouse over the icon. However, this value will not change until you move
    the mouse off the icon. Each time you hover, you will get the current
    signal strength reported to Windows by the driver. If you hover for 30
    seconds though, the information doesn't change.

    So how to you observe signal strength in real time?

    3) right-click on the system tray icon and select 'status.' This will
    dynamically show signal strength reported to Windows from the wireless
    adapter. If you wanted to take a laptop and walk around a site to get a
    general idea of signal strength, just leave the status page open and watch
    the bars.

    Does this answer your questions?
    Jerry Peterson[MSFT], Apr 6, 2005
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  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Thank you for the response. I understand your explanation of signal strength
    and how it is reported.

    However, If I right click the systray icon and go to status, the signal
    meter will show 2 bars. Immediatley afterwards, I then click "View Wireless
    Networks" and refresh the list via an F5, the repopulated list shows my
    wireless connection with 5 bars.

    There still shows to be a disconnect in the two reportings. I tried the
    above method at 1 foot away from the wireless router and the system tray
    signal strength never exceeded 3 bars. As before, the refreshed network list
    still showed my wireless connection maxed out with 5 bars.

    Any further suggestions? Thanks.
    Guest, Apr 6, 2005
  4. Well isn't that annoying...

    Would you mind replying with the adapter model and driver version? I will
    attempt the same procedure in house and see what I can find out.
    Jerry Peterson[MSFT], Apr 7, 2005
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