Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.

8/31/2018

WiFi Analyzer

Filed under: Better Living Through Technology,Fun,Geek Work,GUI Center,MicroSoft,The Network Geek at Home — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:05 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

Now, available for Windows!

I’ve actually been using this particular program on an Android tablet for quite a long time. Come to think of it, I started out using it on a rooted Barnes and Noble nook tablet close to ten years ago, then when I upgraded, just kept using it. Often, I’d pull out my tablet, especially when on the road, to find the strongest local wifi signal to see if I could join that network. When I was in San Francisco for WonderCon in 2010, I used it to discover that the fastest wireless internet connection I could find was the yoga studio next door to the little, boutique hotel I was staying in. I also used it to tell the hotel staff what to change their wifi channel to for better performance.
More recently, I used it in my own neighborhood to tune my home wifi to the best channel so we got a stronger signal and weren’t sharing the same frequency with all the neighbors. Sure, it may be a small improvement, but I think it’s significant enough to make a few minutes spent with a free app worthwhile.
In any case, I saw recently on Lifehacker, that there’s a free Windows version of WiFi Analyzer available now. You just need to follow the links and download it. I linked to the Lifehacker article, instead of directly, because they go a great job showing you why it’s a good thing to have and use. Also, I’m too lazy to write all that out again. So, go hit their site, give them advertising revenue, and enjoy!

11/22/2010

Some Collected Advice for Network Admins

Filed under: Advice from your Uncle Jim,Geek Work,Linux,MicroSoft — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:33 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

So, I promised you more technical stuff here, right?

Well, stop yer grinin’ and grab yer linen, ’cause here come a fist full of links with some great advice for network administrators, all from TechRepublic:
First, if you’re a real network admin, you’ve dealt with traffic issues on file servers.  Issues that have hidden sources.  Unknown processes that jam up your network connections until your users scream for your head.  So, how do you deal with that when you’re on a budget and don’t have a lot of tools?  Well, one way is to use “netstat” to look at what process is running on what port and sending what volume of data.  If you’re on Unix, you probably already know about this tool, but if you’re on Windows, check out “Netstat tips and tricks for Windows admins“.  It may save your bacon one day.

Second, you probably have wireless in your network now, too, right?  But, it may not always work quite the way you want.  Once again, users will scream bloody murder if they can’t read their blogs on their iPhone, so, how do you find out what’s jamming up your WIFI network so that no one can connect?  Read through “Troubleshooting for wireless connectivity issues” to get you started on running down the problem.

Thirdly, if you’re a REAL network administrator, you probably have at least one Linux box in your network.  Something that runs an open source network inventory or monitoring tool or, maybe even, an actual Linux file server.  In any case, sooner or later, even that sad, little, neglected Linux box will have disk space issues, so here are “10 things you can do when the drive on your Linux box is full“.

And, finally, my personal favorite.  You hear a lot of buzzwords floating around these days in IT shops, but “the cloud” is the most common magic cure for all ills.  Personally, I’m not so sure.  I worry about things like, oh, you know, security and auditing and connectivity issues and little details like that which seem like they might be an issue for the magic cloud computing panacea.  Turns out, I’m not the only one.  So, go see why Patrick Gray says “The cloud doesn’t matter“.


Advice from your Uncle Jim:
"You must forgive in order to live."
   --Stephen Orchard

10/15/2003

Zagat’s Guide to Wi-Fi

Filed under: Fun Work,Geek Work,News and Current Events,The Network Geek at Home — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:43 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

Wi-Fi is prime-time now.

Well, we knew it had to happen. It started with Starbuck’s, then just slid down hill from there. Now, I’ll have to be explaining wi-fi to my family.
According to this article on Wired News, Zagat has published a guide to wi-fi “hot-spot” locations. It’s not enough to know where a good hotel or restraunt are anymore, now you have to know if they have a good wi-fi connection, too. And, with that, everyone is going geek. Geek is, in fact, chic. Scary.
I think this is a sign of the end times.

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