2020-05-27T08:03:00Z
it_user434868 - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Director of Delivery at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
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What needs improvement with AirCheck?

Please share with the community what you think needs improvement with AirCheck.

What are its weaknesses? What would you like to see changed in a future version?

3
PeerSpot user
3 Answers
DP
Site Administrator at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
2020-07-16T06:21:00Z
Jul 16, 2020

The battery life needs improvement. For example, when you are doing an Ethernet test, that seems to drain the battery pretty quickly. I would like it if they could somehow build/develop a type of fiber optic module with the device. That would be good. The tool itself has a series of features. I think that each set of features should have its own way of identifying, "Here is the problem, and this is how NetAlly fixes that problem or resolves that issue." Typically what happens because there are so many features, marketing might not be familiar with all the things that a solution can do and the problems that it will solve. So, they'll give two or three quick phrases of what it can do, and if you're not really familiar with the issues, then you won't understand what is being said.

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Emanuele Mannino - PeerSpot reviewer
Wireless Network Engineer at a hospitality company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
2020-05-28T06:26:00Z
May 28, 2020

With the solution’s one-button AutoTest feature, not all the information is particularly useful. It could be improved with a bit of artificial intelligence saying, "Okay, the G2 sees this problem, maybe this could be the issue," and it would give some suggestions. Right now, when you do the AutoTest you get a bunch of data, but you still have to do some analysis. If you look at some wireless vendors, when there is a problem they give you serious correlation possibilities. For instance, if there is a low signal, it might be due to this or that. You have an idea of where to start your troubleshooting. Additionally, it would be a huge boost if the AirCheck could be used for site surveys, a bit like the Ekahau Sidekick. I think this feature is coming, but -in general- more functionality towards surveying (for example turn the G2 in a survey access point) would be useful. Also, we use 802.1x authentication for the corporate network so, to onboard the G2 I need to download the certificate onto the device. It would be nice to have this functionality through the cloud as well. Right now, you need to do it through the software (windows only) by connecting your laptop physically to the AirCheck. This is one aspect that could be improved. Lastly, many companies are worried about the security of data in the cloud and SSO through API integration is the norm today. I found Link-Live API support it a bit lacking on this side. So far, we haven't been able to integrate it into our single sign-on procedure.

Stuart Kendrick - PeerSpot reviewer
Systems Engineer at a consultancy with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
2020-05-27T08:03:00Z
May 27, 2020

I would love to have a button that pretends that you're an iPhone 5 or an Android Samsung model X, then tell me what you think the experience is. This is a very difficult thing to do because each of these things has different radios in them and behaves differently. As it is today, I can go into the user's office, and say, "The tool says everything's green. The WiFI infrastructure is fine, but their iPhone experience sucks." Is it a problem with their particular iPhone or is it a problem with any iPhone model? If I could have this solution emulate an iPhone model so I can walk into that room, and say, "My tools pretending to be your iPhone and it works fine. It must be your particular iPhone that we have a problem with." I found mobile phones in general have weaker radios, compared, say, to laptops, so they tend to be the devices which struggle first. I suppose though that this is wishful thinking -- from an engineering point of view, I don't see how NetAlly could pack lots of different radios into a single device. And then, they haven't found a way to separate out actual non-802.11 interference from legit 802.11 traffic on channels for which the device cannot hear the device(s) which are communicating on the central channel. As a result, there is a screen where you can see how busy is the channel, e.g., is it a hundred percent full? In which case, you would expect devices to have a lousy experience. But because it is hard (perhaps impossible) to distinguish between non-802.11 interference and legit utilization in this situation, they conflate the two. They know this -- there is a box you can check telling the AirCheck to quit trying to distinguish -- I have this checked now. Again, asking for more precision in this area is probably wishful thinking. I suppose another area which would be helpful would be NetAlly-certified WiFi training -- training which helps me understand how 802.11 works, so that I can more effectively wield the AirCheck. We have been hiring Network Protocol Specialists for this, which has worked out well -- they 'look over our shoulder' remotely, as we practice using the AirCheck in our environment, and NPS staff explain to us what we are seeing. But being able to purchase such a coaching / training session from www.netally.com directly would be helpful.

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Related Questions
Miriam Tover - PeerSpot reviewer
Service Delivery Manager at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Oct 26, 2022
How do you or your organization use this solution? Please share with us so that your peers can learn from your experiences. Thank you!
2 out of 8 answers
Stuart Kendrick - PeerSpot reviewer
Systems Engineer at a consultancy with 501-1,000 employees
May 27, 2020
Mostly, this is a WiFi analyzer. I get a report from an end user saying, "Hey, I'm in my office, and the WiFi isn't working." What's complicated about that is it could be the person's laptop or their phone. It could also be the wireless infrastructure or they tried to get to some website that just happens to be down and are confusing the fact that www.company.com is down with local WiFi behavior. What this tool allows me to do is walk up to their office, sit next to them, and turn on the tool, then I've programmed it to do some basic checks. If it succeeds, all lights are green, then I know that it's an issue with their laptop or phone. On the other hand, if my tool has trouble connecting to the WiFi infrastructure, I know immediately that I have problems with the wireless access points or whatever constitutes the infrastructure. Therefore, the tool helps me rapidly narrow the fault domain: Is it the client's device, the infrastructure, or the remote server? A common problem in rented buildings is that folks with a little WiFI knowledge, either the manufacturers of the (low-end) WiFi AP or the local IT staff, will change the default channels of their APs to something off the base frequencies. This is a problem for everybody: once you understand how WiFi works, you don't do this. However, it is a common error. AutoTest picks up this error immediately and helps inform me how I might go around troubleshooting. I might, at that point, go and visit the folks who are running these APs, and say, "Here's a better way to do it where we'll all benefit if you make these changes."
Emanuele Mannino - PeerSpot reviewer
Wireless Network Engineer at a hospitality company with 10,001+ employees
May 28, 2020
I work in the wireless team in the HQ, we don't visit the sites. We mainly provide remote support, design and validation. We bought the G2 to understand how the new functionality work (we already had the previous generation Aircheck) and to train our implementation and support teams to troubleshoot with it whenever there is an issue. Right after buying the tester, we created a guide for our internal use, and then I distributed the guide to our support engineers. Now, they have their own G2 testers and, whenever in the field, they follow my guide and troubleshoot the issue while I can see the test report in Link-Live cloud portal and evaluate the results remotely. We currently have four devices. Each device is assigned to a support team, and each support team has five or six people. Generally, the most common issue we encounter is an access point going down, meaning no coverage. Some of our sites have also specialised IoT devices that are very sensitive to interference on 5GHz channels so, being able to see the interferers on the G2 is a massive help.
it_user434868 - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Director of Delivery at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Oct 26, 2022
Hi, We all know it's really hard to get good pricing and cost information. Please share what you can so you can help your peers.
2 out of 8 answers
Stuart Kendrick - PeerSpot reviewer
Systems Engineer at a consultancy with 501-1,000 employees
May 27, 2020
For a few thousand dollars, you save yourself a ton of time. It's a great deal.
Emanuele Mannino - PeerSpot reviewer
Wireless Network Engineer at a hospitality company with 10,001+ employees
May 28, 2020
It is a bit expensive, to be honest. For a big company it's not a big deal. But for a small firms, like a wireless consultant or small IT support company, it is hugely expensive and that's a shame because it is a fantastic tool. Netally have a unique position in this market so I guess they can do whatever they want. Fair enough. Because I work in a big company, it is a no-brainer. The yearly maintenance fee is okay; if I were a consultant, I would still buy it, but it would be a huge investment. Overall, it's a good tool to have.
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