Displayed Client RSSI equivalent? Client Band/RSSI table?

Gary_Hahn
Conversationalist

Displayed Client RSSI equivalent? Client Band/RSSI table?

I would like to be able to see client RSSIs in the commonly ascribed simple dBm value, ideally in a table, but I cannot find this in Dashboard.   What I do find is a positive value, which is not possible.  RSSI by industry convention should yield a value typically between -30 and - 90.    In client event log, I see things like "channel: 1, rssi: 45", or in the per AP clients table, where 45 could potentially be SNR, but is unlikely, and either way is not RSSI.   Where can I find true RSSI so I know whether I need to add an AP in a weak area, for example?

 

I also would like to see a table which tells me which what the actual operating band or channel is for all clients.  I can get this per AP, but that's a huge hassle to grab/export/filter.  Am I missing where this basic, but requisite, level of information can be found?  It's not in Network-wide clients (even with added columns).

 

Thanks!

 

Gary

3 Replies 3
HodyCrouch
Building a reputation

The signal level shown on the client detail page is SNR.  Meraki published a documentation page on this topic at https://documentation.meraki.com/MR/WiFi_Basics_and_Best_Practices/Wireless_fundamentals%3A_Signal-t...

 

Wherever you see a specific reference to RSSI in Meraki, I think you can subtract 95 to get the signal strength in dBm.  There's a small note about this in the Location Analytics KB article (search Meraki help for 3965).

 

As for the channel, you probably saw that you can export the channel(s) as part of the list of access points.  This would require you to do one export per network.  The APIs aren't much help here either.  Only the AirMarshall scan results API includes channel information and I think that's only for the other networks detected by AirMarshall and not your own access points.

Thank you for the reply and insight!

 

No reflection on your response, but definitely on the Meraki product, is that SNR and RSSI are very different things and we need to know both to make certain determinations about how our clients are performing, and why.   Yes, SNR is a better judgement of how well it's going to communicate, but not at all useful for determining its likely "RF distance" from two access points (and thus whether another AP is needed between)...you must remove the relative noise factor to get an absolute measurement.

 

/Rant mode on...

As for having to subtract 95 from what is apparently, then, a quasi-arbitrary number, I'm not sure why they don't present the signal in terms of, say, types of fruit.  If I need to do math or cross-reference a table to find the information I need, they could just tell me the signal is "mango", and I can go look that up.   Wasn't this stuff developed by a group from MIT?   What this tells me is that the product is suited for only very small, very simple environments with no RF challenges, and I should just shut up and drink the wireless they give me.  Yep, I could call, but what kind of business model encourages customers to occupy expensive (to Meraki) TAC time?   I know, gotta keep the GUI simple for the cloud management customer base, but a few "advanced" tabs would do wonders.  "I'm sorry, customer, but the product you purchased does not supply ample information for me to diagnose the problem." /Rant mode off.

I think you're confusing Received Signal Power (which is a negative value measured between -99dBm and 0dBm) and RSSI (which is a positive value between 0 & 255 and has massive variances in implementation between manufacturers). Maybe you've used some products that report RSSI in dBm but they are incorrect in their use of this term for that measurement. Due to the massive variances in implementation between manufacturers, a true RSSI value is not at all suitable for AP placement.

There's probably a case for implementing received signal power, measured in dBm, but that might lead to poor AP placement as people don't realise that a device with a low signal strength may be perfectly usable in an area of low background noise. Similarly, a client with a high receive power might not be at all usable in a noisy environment.

SNR is the correct metric to display in a signal quality bar graph. It's true most devices show both signal strength and signal quality bars, but signal quality is the one that actually matters so overall it probably leads to better AP placement if used exclusively.

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