Wireless Valley Maps RF Management

A site survey tool vendor plans to launch a tool later this year to measure the true effectiveness of wireless deployments.
Site survey tool vendor Wireless Valley is launching a tool later this year to find out the true effectiveness of wireless deployments, officials said Wednesday.

The RF Manager will be tied to the Austin, Texas-based company's software suite to provide real-time information on RF (define) activity on the wireless network, evaluate bandwidth usage and report areas that aren't getting enough coverage, providing possible solutions to the problem.

The software is geared towards companies, hotels, airports and others that provide a wireless network for employees and customers. RF Manager gives network administrators a visual map of how access points are performing.

In addition to supporting well-known wireless communications mediums like Wi-Fi and CDMA (define), officials at Wireless Valley late last year announced they would extend support to cover emerging technologies like WiMax (define) and RFID (define).

Jim Welch, Wireless Valley CEO and president, said buildings and other obstructions pose unique problems for network administrators who aren't used to wireless networks. Unlike wired networks, you can't see what's going on out there and how the wireless network is performing, he said.

"In the wired world you put a port out and you knew you had a connection and if you wanted more than one connection you put a hub onto it and you have five connections," Welch said. "In the wireless world you could walk into a room and you don't have any idea how many users could be there, what kind of applications they could use; it's just not visible."

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