• 08/19/2003
    12:00 AM
  • Network Computing
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  • Connect Directly
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The 10 Deadly Sins of Wireless

We've tested hundreds of wireless products in our labs and have talked to plenty of IT managers who've taken the plunge with wireless LANs. Here's our list of 10 Deadly
1. Equating mobility and wireless

Subtlety is everything. Even at Network Computing, we tend to lump mobile and wireless into one category, but there are important distinctions between the two.

Mobile applications running on notebooks or PDAs don't always require wireless access: If you don't need information in real time, dial-up access and/or synchronization of data onto mobile devices makes more sense.

On the flip side, wireless isn't always all about mobile access, either. It can instead be used as a substitute for wired infrastructure, like using a wireless bridge to connect two facilities in a metropolitan area rather than running a T1 between them. And even when wireless is used to support a mobile work force, these users are seldom interested in the kind of mobility you get from a cell phone (e.g., network access while driving down the highway). Instead, they typically want "nomadic" access, where they can access the network from their remote locations on the road or in branch offices rather than from the points in between.

Costs & Benefits

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If you don't distinguish between mobility and wireless when you install your wireless network, it may not fly. You can't settle for the nomadic approach if you're running an application like wireless voice over IP, for instance, that requires actual mobility.

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