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wifi signal strength issues

Hi all,


The current wireless network in my environment is supported with WLCs (3504) and APs (2802).

A number of users are not getting the full signal strength even though the AP may be mounted directly above their desk on the ceiling (less than 4m height). A number of users experience getting only 2bars of signal strength even though the APs are located nearby in open office area. Is there any setting i can tweak on my WLC for better signal strength? The affected users are connected on a mix of 2.4 and 5 Ghz. TIA!

Ric Beeching
Rising star

That is pretty odd:


What height are the APs at?


Do you know what power level they are at right now? (Wireless->802.11a or 802.11b/g to get radio status of APs)

- Power level is indicated on a scale of 1 - # (usually 1-8 but depends on AP). 1 is highest. If RRM is enabled all the 802.11b/g radios should generally be set to quite low (7 or 8) whereas 802.11a should see them as higher like 1-3 range unless the office is experiencing interference. You can change a single AP's power level on that page (blue arrow on right of screen) to test but I recommend configuring RRM globally if you want to change all radios for a band.


Is it affecting all clients or just particular types - e.g. can you stand in the same spot with your laptop and see full strength?


There's a few scenarios off the bat I can think of:


- Your AP(s) in those locations don't actually have their radios enabled so they are picking up signal from a neighbouring AP

- Your AP(s) are running on a channel your affected clients don't support e.g. UNII-2 or UNII-2E on 5 GHz

- Your clients are somehow in the dead spot of the 'donut' style RF shape from the omni APs - this is unlikely due to multipath

- Your APs are mounted too high (recommendation is 3M)





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Hi Bee ching,

The power of my APs are managed centrally by my wlc. For 802.11a, the power of my APs are mostly on 5,6,7, does it mean there is alot of interference in my environment? Apologies for the late reply.
Flavio Miranda


 I had similar problem with Qualcomm adapters. I have directional 120º antennas and Qualcomm shows only half the signal. I replaced Qualcomm by Intel and clients now see 100% signal everywhere. In my case it was a problem with Qualcomm sensitivity. 


-If I helped you somehow, please, rate it as useful.-

Scott Fella
Hall of Fame Master

You need to understand that the device does the roaming and not the AP’s. The device doesn’t have to roam if it still has good signal and is not hitting the minimum threshold the NIC manufacture defines. If you want to tweak your environment, disable the lower data rates, reduce the tx power and you will shrink your ap coverage cell size. Don’t look at the bars on a device, its misleading and makes it look like the wireless is broken. Remember the device does the roaming.
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Agree, I has a similar issue recently, the native supplicant shows full bar but anyconnect shows only 2 bar.

I did some over the air local download tests and both performed almost similar.

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