CTS 111 – Why You Shouldn’t Skip WLPC

This year, Rowell wasn’t able to attend WLPC. But François made it to Phoenix and presented too!

Why You Shoulnd’t Skip WLPC

WLPC 2018 was packed with a lot of great presentations by different people in the Wi-Fi industry. The format of this years’ conference was a little different:

  • 3 Main sessions of 55 mins
  • 13 Short sessions of 30 mins
  • 29 TEN talks of 10mins
  • Deep Dive sessions (2x 2.5h) on different topics (Every attendee had to choose one when registering)

The trends for WLPC 2018

  • 802.11ax
  • AI
  • Dual 5GHz APs (A little less than last year)
  • Programming (deep dive on Python + template report)
  • IoT ready APs

What to look for in the Future

  • Talk on 5G with Peter Thornycroft from Aruba
    • 5G is not well defined yet but might change a lot of things in our industry
    • Talked about all the different technology involved (LAA, LWA, Multifire, Wi-Fi)
  • WPA3. We got a little more details on what it will be from Heather Williams
    • Enhancement of WPA2 (802.11w mandatory, KRACK mitigation,
    • What’s coming with WPA3
    • Simultaneous Authentication of Equals (protect against stupid passwords)
    • Opportunistic Wireless Encryption (OWE) (Some protection for open SSID)
    • Device Provisioning Protocol (DPP) (IoT device protection)

The Community

  • Talk on blogging by Lee Badman
  • Talk on the Wi-Fi Pro slack group from Manon Lessard and Samuel Clements
  • Update from the WLA from Peter MacKenzie and Mark Raats
  • Harnessing the Power of community from Tom Hollingsworth
  • Explained what a community is
  • Explain how to engage with a community (Wi-Fi community)
  • How to handle divergent viewpoints: stay civil and respect each other
  • Presentation of the conference from Keith Parsons
  • Apart from the presentations, other event got organized
  • Morning runs
  • Morning Yoga
  • Morning prayers
  • Retro video game night
  • Whiskey and Wireless podcast recording

Interesting Sessions

  • Impact of LTE-U on Wi-Fi in 5GHz by VEli-Pekka Ketonen
  • Polarizing Figures by Scott Lester – Talk on external antennas
    • Interesting stats: 90% to 98% of AP sold with internal integrated antennas
  • Deep dive into PoE by Jonathan Smith
  • Does it matter what AP you buy from Wes Purvis
    • Data comparing different types of APs (2×2:2 vs 3×3:3 vs 4×4:4, 11n vs 11ac w1, 11ac w2)
    • Get up to 28% performance with higher end APs
    • Low-end AP can reach hardware limitation
    • 3×3 offers up to 10% less throughput improvement vs 4×4 (lower retry rate + maintaining 3SS easier)
  • Challenges in Modeling Campus by Vladan Jevremovic
    • Showed us how to model a outdoor park
  • Airport Utility – Monitor iOS devices + Python scripting by Eric Garnel
  • RRM by Blake Krone
    • Talked about how different vendors do it (Cisco, Aruba, Ruckus)
    • Talked about what to do when you enable it (configuration)
    • Talked about what you do once it’s on (monitoring)
  • When a WLAN Pro starts a WISP by Steve McKim
  • RSSI Revealed by GRegor Vucajnk

Useful Sessions

  • Do you have a Mac from Adrian Granados
  • A lot of good information for Wi-Fi Explorer users
  • Filtering and coloring Frames with wireshark from Joel Crane


  • Wi-Fi Alliance announced the launch of their Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Optimized Connectivity. Talk from Ortiz Consuelo
  • WLA released their transparent book
  • Ekahau announced the support for BLE design in ESS in the near future

Controversial Topic

  • Ghost frames (Ben Miller vs. Devin Akin)

Lee Badman was named Person of the Year for his huge contribution to the Wi-Fi community in general.

CTS 072: Guide to Using External Antennas

Why should you use external antennas in your Wi-Fi environment? There are many reasons you should use them. In this episode, we talk about what to look for in external antennas, what to watch out for when deploying them, and what details to keep in mind.

We are used to internal antennas from our access points. Have you considered using external antennas to meet your Wi-Fi requirements? In this episode, we provide some educational material around external antennas. Yes, they do add some cost to a project but it’s not much compared to the solution they bring to your Wi-Fi network. There are use cases for external antennas and below are the topics we talk about during the episode.

This episode is proudly sponsored by AccelTex Solutions. They are providing a special offer just for our listeners. If you head over to their products page and use promo code CTS Podcast 72 they will send you a free antenna sample of your choice.

AccelTex Solutions

Episode Contents

  • Why use antennas, other than the ones built into the AP?
    • Aesthetics
    • Direct signal
    • To meet requirements
    • Use outdoor
  • Antenna types
    • Omni
      • Signal in 360 degrees
    • Semi-directional
      • Ranges in degrees such as 65 degrees, 120 degrees, etc
      • Patch
    • Directional
      • Dish
      • Yagi
  • Antenna details
    • Beamwidth
    • Azimuth and elevation pattern
      • Lobes
    • Gain
      • Passive
    • Connectors
      • RPTNC
      • RPSMA
    • Elements
      • Isolation
        • Antennas hearing each other
      • Horizontal
      • Vertical
    • Orientation
    • Antenna Polarization
      • Important for indoors?
        • MIMO
      • Outdoor PtP links
  • Design
    • When designing Wi-Fi be sure to use the right antennas
  • Deployment
    • Mount the antennas properly
    • Get the right angle
    • Consider spacing between antennas
    • Don’t connect two antennas to one access point, unless you’re using something like a DART connector on the Cisco 3802E
  • Personal experience
    • High density
    • Outdoor
    • Special use cases
Sample Radiation Pattern for AccelTex ATS-OP-245-47-6RPSP-36

Sample Radiation Pattern for AccelTex ATS-OP-245-47-6RPSP-36


RF Elements Antenna Propagation Patterns

RF Elements Antenna Propagation Patterns


Meraki MR53 2.4 GHz antenna pattern

Meraki MR53 2.4 GHz antenna pattern

Links and Resources

This Week In Wireless

CTS 069: Jussi Kiviniemi of Ekahau

Jussi Kiviniemi, Senior Vice President of Ekahau, joins the show as our special guest as we record together in Santa Clara. Jussi goes over the conferences he attended and the upcoming updates to Ekahau Site Survey.

Interview with Jussi Kiviniemi

Interview with Jussi

Video demo of Ekahau Site Survey version 9.0


  • Attending WLPC and Aruba Atmosphere
    • Great presentations at WLPC, especially on 802.11ax
    • Maker sessions were exciting at WLPC
      • Very hands on
      • Assembled an odroid
      • Building a software defined radio (SDR)
    • Jussi’s presentation at Aruba Atmosphere on Wi-Fi Network Design – 10 Essentials
  • Ekahau Site Survey Updates
    • Using macOS version
      • Can do active/passive surveys
      • Need a compatible adapter for active surveys
      • Haven’t found a reliable adapter to use
    • Read-only version?
      • Ekahau will be taking reporting and read-only to the next level so tune in
    • Updates coming to reporting
    • Version 8.7 will be released soon
      • Includes copy and paste of walls, APs, and predictive elements
      • New APs and antennas included in release
    • Version 9.0
      • Insight into the amount of management vs data vs control frames
      • New capacity planner
      • Accurate analysis of how capacity is distributed
      • Seeing distribution between 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz
      • Auto Planner is overhauled
        • Added intelligence
        • Able to disable excessive 2.4 GHz radios
      • High capacity areas can be defined with different capacity requirements
      • Airtime utilization
        • Able to see impact of data rate selection, number of SSIDs, AP placement, channels, and overall number of clients impacting airtime
      • New dialog
        • Includes selection of data rates
        • Number of SSIDs on the network
        • Enable/disable of RTS/CTS
        • Bandsteering

Links and Resources

CTS 068: Wi-Fi Network Access Control with Andrew Chappelle

In this episode, we welcome Andrew Chappelle from Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

We talked about network access control focusing on securing the Wi-Fi network. He shared his experience with complex NAC systems such as Cisco ISE or Aruba ClearPass and also share his view of what the future of access control will look like.

Andrew Chappelle (CCIE-W #42377) works as a System Engineer for Aruba HPE out of Calgary. In his previous positions, he worked a lot on complex network access deployments. He is very knowledge about Wi-Fi and will soon be CWNE! I guess, we are going to have to bring him back on the show when he does! You can find him on twitter at @AngryWrelessGuy. He blogs at angrywirelessguy.wordpress.com.

Interview with Andrew Chappelle

Wi-Fi Network Access Control

The WHY: Why do we need a network access control for the WLAN infrastructure? Let’s talk about customer’s requirements:

  • Offer different access and level of security for different type of users & devices
  • Enable easy & secure BYOD
  • Segment the Wi-Fi network so guest traffic is isolated
  • Make the user experience is easier

The WHAT: What are the solutions to meet these requirements?

  • SSID for corporate users (would do both BYOD and corporate access) – SSID consolidation
  • SSID for guest
  • Profiling

The HOW: How do we implement it? What do we need to make it happen?

  • NAC server
  • Certificate PKI

We talked about the most common EAP methods used today.

What is coming next? What can we expect seeing in these NAC solutions in the near future?


Links to ISE documentation:

Links to ClearPass documentation:

Upcoming Episode on Wi-Fi Issue

Here is the link to the Wi-Fi issues submission form for one of our upcoming episode.

This Week In Wireless

Cisco – New AireOS version – released the

Adaptive 802.11r

802.11r is the IEEE standard for fast roaming and this concept of roaming is also known as Fast Transition (FT). Here the initial handshake with the new AP is done even before the client roams to the target AP. The feature allows you to set up a network without choosing Enable for Fast Transition (FT). The Apple devices (iOS 10 clients) signal the Cisco APs to identify this functionality. Cisco APs mutually signal that adaptive 802.11r is supported on the network and perform an FT association on the WLAN.

Legacy wireless clients that do not support 802.11r can still join the same network however does not benefit from faster FT roaming. Legacy devices that do not recognize the FT AKM’s beacons and probe responses join as an 11i/WPA2 device.

This feature is supported on the following Wave2 APs:

  • Cisco Aironet 1560 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1800 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 2800 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 3800 Series APs

QoS Fastlane

QoS Fastlane simplifies the application traffic prioritization process so that network congestion is minimized and time sensitive traffic (like voice or video) is delivered on time.

To choose which iOS apps have their traffic prioritized by QoS Fastlane, configure the network with a configuration profile.

This feature support now extends to the following Cisco APs:

  • Cisco Aironet 1560 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1800 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 2800 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 3800 Series APs

Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP) Support

TKIP security protocol option is supported on the following Cisco APs:

  • Cisco Aironet 1560 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1810 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1815 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1830 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 1850 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 2800 Series APs
  • Cisco Aironet 3800 Series APs

Resolved Caveats

CSCus83638 Cisco AP 5-GHz radio is stuck – beaconing continues but does not accept client associations.

CSCva32411 Clients losing connectivity when reauthenticates with 802.1x over Cisco 702w AP

CSCvb72192 Cisco 1850 APs running Click OS: IPhone6S fails to connect to adaptive 802.11r WLAN

Ask a Question

From Temur:
“Hello, do you have experience to use EAP-SIM or hotspot 2.0 in hotels or public areas to avoid installation of 3G/4G re translators from GSM providers? The problem is, if there is no 3G coverage in hotel floors, all the providers are installing those ugly antennas at each floor, near to my APs. we have three providers , so imagine what will happen to hotel design if all of them tries to install antennas. Is it possible to use existing WiFi infrastructure to avoid such installations?”


If you’re using Cisco APs, such as the 3700s, you could use the module for cell service.

Best option is to use Wi-Fi calling but you need to verify that it works with your carrier. Some carriers do not support it and also some devices do not support Wi-Fi calling.

The other option is to install a DAS system and have all providers use the same DAS system. This should be possible without having to install antennas for each carrier. Check out CTS050.


The WLAN Community Compensation Comparison is a survey conducted by Keith Parsons back late last year.
You can compare what would be your revenue if you were to more somewhere else.

On top of this, Keith tweeted a few results from the compensation survey this week:

802.11eh Patches

Brennan Martin has some cool 802.11eh Canadian Wi-Fi patches. Cost per patch is $6 USD, which is just enough to cover his cost.

WLPC Videos

The videos from WLPC Phoenix 2017 have been released. Check them out on Keith’s Vimeo page.

Carrier Wave

Other very good blog articles shared on the Carrier Wave Paper this week.

Following up with WLPC:

  • Install Spectools on the WLPC Odroid
  • Giving back to the community by Rasika

CTS 020: 5 New Year’s Resolutions For Wireless Engineers

In This Episode

We’ve made it through the first week of 2016. It’s a good time to look back at our accomplishments of 2015 and to look forward for 2016.

I’ve created a short list of 5 New Year’s resolutions for wireless engineers. It is not in any particular order.

  1. Attend an in-person event
  2. Become a speaker/presenter
  3. Get certified
  4. Start a blog
  5. Be Bold

Bonus: Start your own lab

Links and Resources Mentioned

What are your New Year’s resolutions? Are you going to take up one of the ones listed above? Let me know in the comments below.