As an IT manager, you’ve seen wireless networks quickly evolve from a convenience offered to employees to a mission-critical component of your IT infrastructures. Wireless users now expect comparable performance and availability to wired networks. With BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) and more people expecting to use their wireless devices at work, getting control of and being able to ensure the performance and security of your wireless network has become a key challenge.
Organizations enjoy the flexibility of WiFi network access; however, it poses a host of challenges for network managers. Most managers lack the tools and visibility to effectively monitor their wireless networks, much less make informed planning decisions and proactively manage their performance.
Monitoring wireless performance is more complex than wired networks. The range of wireless access points (APs) can be affected by a number of issues, including building materials. As more users connect to a wireless access point and it is oversubscribed, performance begins to degrade. And as APs age, their performance begins to decline.
Once a wireless user connects to an access point, they use bandwidth and resources on your core network. More wireless clients, with all of the email sync-ups and Facebook updates, begin to saturate resources and clog Internet connections. Understanding wireless network usage is important for capacity planning of your wired infrastructure.
WiFi networks are particularly vulnerable to security issues, such as those introduced by rogue devices. A common problem is an employee plugging their own AP into your network. The rogue access point bypasses your wireless security policies, possibly without encryption or requiring a password. Someone with more malicious intent can put an AP within range of your office, hoping a wireless client inadvertently connects with it so they might get a password or access sensitive data.
WhatsUp Gold can tell you who’s on your wireless network, where they are connected and how much bandwidth they’re using. Whether you need better visibility into the traffic on your network, want to police high-bandwidth users or are interested in monitoring for suspicious activities on your network, WhatsUp Gold can help. Learn more about wireless network monitoring.