I have recently deployed a network of 72 OM2Ps in a 16-story dorm. The environment is a major city in the USA that has a lot of other 802.11b/g traffic in the area. There are 200 other radios that can be seen from the site survey tool in the control panel. The noise floor is higher than normal at around -80 to -85.
With an average of 4.5 radios and 16 rooms per floor, the average signal strength is around -65. With the extra power of the OM2Ps, the signal strength in the rooms with the OM2Ps is -10 to -20 and the lowest signal I've seen on property is -80, but that is in areas that I don't care about, like hallways.
So coverage (signal strength) is not really a problem. If anything, the signal may be too strong in some cases.
Because of my worries of self interference and interference from other adjacent WiFi, I have over ridden the single channel configuration and have gone to a five channel configuration where the channels are not adjacent. Sure, there are only three non-overlapping channels in the 802.11b/g spectrum.
Important to note is that all of the radios are POE powered with the official passive POE device with the 18V power supply.
Finally, my OM2Ps are running fw-ng-r397.
Problem #1: In some areas at least, connectivity seems to be intermittent. We went through a testing procedure that narrowed down the connectivity problem to the rate limiting function on SSID #1 of the OM2Ps.
On the test laptop, we set up three pings at the same time. One to the default gateway of the wifi-connected laptop. One to the default gateway of the OM2Ps which is the internet router for the LAN. One ping to 126.96.36.199. Our testing showed solid pings with no packet loss to the connected OM2P with rate limiting down around 2 Mbps up and down.
|Rate Limiting Ping to OM2P Ping to Router Ping to 188.8.131.52
2 x 2 Mbps solid packet loss packet loss
10 x 10 Mbps solid packet loss packet loss
22 x 11 Mbps solid solid solid
The third option is with the rate limiting at its highest possible setting.
Question #1: This is the biggie. Is there an issue with rate limiting in OM2P? Does it cause packet loss and connectivity issues when implemented? Is it just this software version?
Question #2: Should I just use the normal, single channel configuration? There is no single channel that looks like a good candidate throughout the building.
Question #3: Despite all radios having a direct connection to a switch located within a floor or two, about 10% of them are in repeater mode. We reboot them and they may or may not go into gateway mode. Why is this happening? How do I keep all of them in gateway mode?
Question #4: One thing I have noted is that the radios in repeater mode only seem to connect to other radios that are on the same channel. Is this by design?