Testing 802.11n

This posting is a follow-up to This Earlier Posting.

While I was testing 802.11n, I still had my router on “Mixed Mode”. In the meantime, the connection speed indicated on my laptop ‘Klystron’, using the command ‘iwconfig wlan0′, had dropped from 72.2 mbps to 7.2 mbps. And while I could pull my hair out trying to figure this out, in reality the explanation for this seems simple. Since the previous posting, some WiFi device of mine established a regular, 802.11g connection, thereby dropping my whole network out of 802.11n mode.

I was able to solve this, by going back into my router settings, and instead of allowing b/g/n Automatic determination, set it to “N Only”. Doing so also rebooted my WiFi, and kicked all my devices off, so that everything needed to reconnect.

I suppose that one aspect of this which is not as pretty, is the fact that I generally need to reboot ‘Klystron’, and thus need to reload the kernel-module that runs its WiFi chipset, before that laptop indicates updated, 802.11n connectivity. But after doing that as well, I found that the command ‘iwconfig wlan0′ indicated readiness to transfer data at 72.2 mbps again.

This time, I am on channel 6.

Having done so also implies, that if at some point in time I wanted to join my WiFi with an older device, that does not have this capability, that device will fail to connect.

The eventual result from this experimentation is, that I cannot find any practical way to achieve the data transfer speeds that 802.11n eventually permits, and this can be due to the fact that I am transferring data from and to an older, slower computer.

And while all this indicates performance issues, nothing so far indicates driver stability issues, on ‘Klystron’. I am still waiting for those to happen.



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