[MLB-WIRELESS] Wireless Compatibility

Matt Pearce matt at pearceits.com.au
Tue Jan 13 14:27:26 EST 2004

Hi All,

While browsing through www.zdnet.com.au I came upon an interesting article
stating that a lot of things that are supposedly certified to work together
under the banner of WiFi have actually failed the tests.  I wonder if this
could be linked to Marks Dlink AP problem, if so have Dlink sold something
under false pretences and should be liable for a refund at least ??


Link here:-


Story as cut and pasted:-

      Wi-Fi testing finds weak links
      By Graeme Wearden, ZDNet UK
      13 January 2004

      At least one in every four Wi-Fi products examined by the Wi-Fi
Alliance has failed its certification test--a sign that many pieces of
wireless equipment on the market are incapable of working as well as users
might expect.
      The Wi-Fi Alliance announced last week that it has now certified more
than 1,000 products since its testing program began in March 2000.

      Products that sport the Alliance's seal of approval are certified to
work with each other and provide the performance expected from the 802.11a,
b or g standards. This means that users can buy certified 802.11x routers,
access points and cards knowing that they should all be compatible.

      But while a great many Wi-Fi products have been approved by the
Alliance, several hundred did not pass its tests.

      "Based on testing of more than 1,000 products over several IEEE 802.11
standards, products that are prepared for Wi-Fi certification testing fail
25 (percent) to 30 percent of the time--or more depending on the technology
being tested," said Wi-Fi Alliance managing director Frank Hanzlik.

      "Products that do not go through the rigorous testing preparation
process have an even higher failure rate. Without Wi-Fi certification, these
product failures would have been experienced by the technology consumer,"
Hanzlik added.

      A product that fails Wi-Fi certification can still be launched,
though, and a manufacturer could still label its wireless products as
"802.11b compatible" even if they only work with its own range of equipment
and not with those from another company.

      The Wi-Fi Alliance says that certification is becoming increasingly
important as the wireless-networking market grows and matures.

      "New features and the growing number of additional chipsets make Wi-Fi
certification more important than ever to consumers and enterprise IT
managers," said Hanzlik.

      A list of products certified by the Wi-Fi Alliance can be seen at its
Web site.

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