IT Management: AirCheck Sniffs Out Wireless Network Problems

 
 
By Cameron Sturdevant  |  Posted 2011-05-03
 
 
 

Front

The handheld Fluke Networks AirCheck is a top notch Wi-Fi analyzer tool for front line network techs, seen here sniffing the crowded airwaves at eWEEK Labs.

Front

Front detail

The easy access keys facilitate no-mistake access to the full range of monitoring and analysis features in the AirCheck.

Front detail

Side

Two external connectors on the AirCheck, left is power and right is a standard mini-USB port for connecting the device to a PC to use the AirCheck Manager software.

Side

Rear

Top center you can see the protective cover over the connector for an optional, directional antennae that was not used in this review.

Rear

Reports

Using the included AirCheck Manager software I was able to generate extensive, detailed reports about the wireless network conditions as seen by the AirCheck handheld device.

Reports

Raw data

After capturing wireless network data using the AirCheck device, here you see details about the access points, networks and devices.

Raw data

Profiles

I created profiles using the AirCheck Manager software that provided information about the authorized and known neighboring devices in our area and then uploaded that information to the AirCheck device. Changes can be made on the device and then transferred back to the management PC so that site details are up-to-date.

Profiles

Home screen

On the AirCheck device, the home screen provides intuitive navigation to the various Wi-Fi analysis functions on the handheld device.

Home screen

Access point

This is one of many information screens that are available on the device. Here you see information about an access point used at eWEEK.

Access point

DHCP failed

The AirCheck helped me quickly diagnose a wireless network connectivity problem where client devices could connect to the wireless network but couldnt use network services because the DHCP server was unavailable.

DHCP failed

Legend

There are useful legend screens throughout the user interface to explain AirCheck shorthand. Because I used the device in the United States, the legend is also pointing out channels that are monitored but not authorized for use in this country.

Legend

Channel use

AirCheck reports on spectrum use as seen around our test area.

Channel use

Channel monitor

Most monitoring functions in AirCheck can display information as a running graph that shows real time wireless network usage.

Channel monitor

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