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2.4 GHz

The 2.4 GHz frequency band includes 802.11b and 802.11g.

The allocation of the 2.4 GHz band predates the development of the IEEE 802.11 Wi-Fi standards and was originally reserved for general industrial, scientific, and medical purposes. This band is approximately 80 MHz in width allowing for no more than three non-overlapping channels, which limits Wi-Fi network capacity and scalability. Today, many communications devices use this band including Wi-Fi radios, Bluetooth radios, baby monitors, cordless phones, and radio controlled equipment or toys. With much activity comes much interference.

For more information on how the 2.4 GHz band compares to the 5 GHz band, refer to the White Paper: Optimizing Industrial Wi-Fi Operation in the 5 GHz Frequency Band available here.

 


 

5 GHz

The 5 GHz band was allocated specifically with IEEE 802.11a in mind. Depending on regulatory domain the 5 GHz band provides between two and seven times the number of channels and resulting network capacity as the 2.4 GHz band.

For more information on how the 2.4 GHz band compares to the 5 GHz band, refer to the White Paper: Optimizing Industrial Wi-Fi Operation in the 5 GHz Frequency Band available here.

 


 

802.1X

IEEE 802.1X is an IEEE Standard for media-level access control and part of a group of networking protocols. 802.1X provides an authentication mechanism to devices attaching to a LAN or WLAN.

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802.1X Supplicant

Refers to the client's software that provides credentials to the authenticator.

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802.11

Refers to the family of wireless specifications developed by the IEEE.

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802.11a

A wireless LAN that operates in the 5 GHz frequency range and has a 54 Mbps data rate capability. Because the 5 GHz frequency range is less crowded than the 2.4 GHz frequency range, it offers a lower risk of signal interference.

Note: For more information on the 5 GHz frequency band, refer to the Optimizing Industrial Wi-Fi Operation in the 5 GHz Frequency Band White Paper, available here.

 


 

802.11b

A wireless LAN that operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency range and has an 11 Mbps maximum data rate capacity. Due to the fact that this frequency range is shared with other popular devices (such as microwave ovens, cell phones, baby monitors, and Bluetooth), the 2.4 GHz band is crowded and therefore experiences more interference than the 5 GHz frequency band.

 


 

802.11d Support

802.11d is the ratified IEEE standard for the operation of a WLAN station radio in multiple domains. Summit software supports a performance-optimized version of IEEE 802.11d. When a Summit radio programmed for the Worldwide domain associates to an AP that is configured for 802.11d, the radio adapts its channels and maximum transmit power to those for the country specified by the AP.

To take advantage of 802.11d support in Summit software and ensure optimal performance, make sure that every AP on your WLAN:

  • Supports 802.11d
  • Specifies the correct country information element
  • Broadcasts its SSID(s)

In addition, make sure that every Summit radio is programmed for the Worldwide regulatory domain. A radio that is programmed for a regulatory domain of FCC, ETSI, or MIC (formerly TELEC) ignores the AP's country information elements.

A Summit radio uses 802.11d only when it tries to associate on an SSID for the first time or after a disconnect. During the initial association process, if the AP provides a Country information element, then the radio configures its channel set and maximum transmit power for that country. The radio assumes that all APs with the same SSID have the same 802.11d country code; as a result, the radio effectively ignores the country code when roaming from one AP to another.

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802.11e

802.11e is an amendment to the 802.11 standard that addresses Quality of Service (QoS) enhancements for WLAN applications. This standard is especially critical with delay-sensitive applications such as Voice over WLAN and streaming multimedia.

 


 

802.11g

A wireless LAN that, like 802.11b, operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency. Due to improved technology such as orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM), 802.11g has a 54 Mbps maximum date rate capacity. Due to the fact that this frequency range is shared with other popular devices (such as microwave ovens, cell phones, baby monitors, and Bluetooth), the 2.4 GHz band is crowded and therefore experiences more interference than the 5 GHz frequency band.

 


 

802.11h

802.11h is the 802.11 standard amendment that addresses interference issues introduced by the use of the 802.11a particularly with military radar systems and medical devices. This standard includes two schemes to address the interference issues: Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS) and Transmit Power Control (TPC).

 


 

802.11i

802.11i is the 802.11 standard amendment that provides improved encryption for WLANs. This standard was ratified by the IEEE in June of 2004 and requires TKIP and AES encryption key protocols.

 


 

802.11n

A wireless LAN that operates in both the 2.4 GHz and the 5 GHz frequency ranges and has a 600 Mbps maximum data rate capacity. 802.11n includes enhancements such as packet aggregation, block acknowledgment, wider channels, and MIMO (multiple input/multiple output) technology.

For more information on 802.11n, refer to the White Paper: 802.11n and Business-Critical Mobile Devices available here.

 


 

802.3

The most common LAN protocol suite, also referred to as Ethernet.

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