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How to improve hotel WiFi with bandwidth control per client

hotel WiFi with bandwidth control

Hotels should provide reliable Internet bandwidth to improve the overall guest WiFi experience. Tanaza allows increasing hotel WiFi network performance thanks to its newly-released Bandwidth Control per Client feature.

According to a recent survey carried out by Forbes, almost 50% of hotel guests consider free WiFi a top priority. Leisure travellers expect to find fast guest Internet access to browse the web, to stay in contact with their friends and family on Whatsapp and social media, to upload pictures of their vacation on Instagram and Facebook, to stream music and video content on Youtube and Netflix, etc. At the same time, business tourists expect reliable WiFi services to share files on Google Drive, perform video conference calls (VoIP and Whatsapp calls and real-time communication on Skype), access their email accounts, etc. As guest satisfaction is key to improve guest loyalty and hotel bookings, it is crucial to allocate hotel bandwidth properly.  

In general, bandwidth consumption depends on a range of factors, mainly the environment of the hospitality venue, the number of concurrent users being connected to the hotel WiFi network and the type of Internet applications guests are using – from low bandwidth apps, i.e. web surfing and instant messaging, to bandwidth-hungry apps, i.e. video calls and video streaming. Given the increasing amount of WiFi-enabled devices per user, together with the proliferation of different internet applications, it is difficult to provide a smooth WiFi experience to all hotel guests at the same time. Tanaza helps hoteliers overcome this problem.

Tanaza has just released its innovative Bandwidth Control per Client feature, which allows hotel network administrators to set a per-user guest WiFi bandwidth limit.

Tanaza allows to limit bandwidth both per SSID and per user, at the same time. For instance, if the hotel IT manager has a total bandwidth of 25Mbps available, he might decide to allocate 20Mbps for guest WiFi on an SSID and the remaining 5Mbps for the hotel staff on a separated SSID. At the same time, considering the 20Mbps of bandwidth available for guest WiFi, he can decide to provide each hotel guest with 300Kbps.

With this new bandwidth control tool, network admins can now enable bandwidth upload and download limitations per user, at the SSID level. This means that all guests being simultaneously connected to the hotel network benefit from the same WiFi performance.

A unique aspect of Tanaza’s per-client bandwidth control feature is its ability to avoid “bandwidth hog”, the term used to identify users consuming more bandwidth than other concurrent users on the same WiFi network. In fact, Tanaza’s Bandwidth Control per Client feature comes with a “boost” function, which allows hotel guests to exceed the bandwidth limit for a few seconds when they use a WiFi service. For instance, let’s suppose that the hotel network admin configures an SSID for guest WiFi with a bandwidth limit of 3Mbps. When a hotel guest performs an online activity, i.e.  streaming a video on Netflix, he will be temporarily allowed to use bandwidth over that limit. At the same time, for a few seconds, he will consume more bandwidth than other concurrent guests.

bandwidth control per client

Thanks to Tanaza’s Bandwidth Control per Client capability, all hotel guests connected to the same SSID will benefit from the same fast and reliable WiFi experience, independently from their Internet usage. By successfully meeting guest expectations regarding WiFi performance, hoteliers can enhance guest loyalty and attract more visitors.

>> Do you want to estimate your hotel network bandwidth need? Try our free Access Point Selector!

Tanaza for WLAN assurance and centralized consolidated management of wireless networks

WLAN

Tanaza is a platform allowing you to ensure your wireless equipment is working correctly at any point in time. Tanaza helps you identify mistakes in your configuration, which might result in disconnections, degraded performance, and WLAN outages.

 

Centralization of wireless networks management

 

Thanks to Tanaza, managing wireless networks and ensuring high-quality services to customers is a child’s play. No more fragmented wireless assurance tools: network administrators will be able to consolidate their networking infrastructure monitoring, using one single centralised dashboard, and receive automated alerts in case of problems.

 

BYOD

 

Digital enterprises and companies are increasingly allowing employees to use their personal devices at work, but BYOD – Bring your own device – policies are not easy to implement, and devices can quickly get out of control. With its couponing feature, Tanaza allows creating temporary and permanent credentials for internet access, so that each employee has their own password to access the network.

For example, in the picture below, you see three types of coupons created:

  • the green wifi voucher, valid for 1 year for up to three devices, will be given to employees
  • the purple wifi voucher, valid for 30 days for up to three devices, will be given to temporary workers/freelancers/consultants
  • the red wifi voucher, valid for 1 day, will be given to guests

 

coupon

 

Furthermore, the network administrator can easily invalidate existing coupons to deny further access to unwanted clients. When a voucher is deactivated, access to the internet will be automatically prohibited to any device using that voucher to connect. 

 

coupon wifi

 

Security, Krack and IoT

 

In enterprises environments, you will probably have many users and devices connecting to your wireless networks: employees, guests, but also printers, shared laptops, smart TVs, etc.

Thanks to Tanaza, you can easily isolate WLAN clients between each other and also isolate them from LAN resources. For example, guests should not be able to see the printers in the building in the network resources.

Given that employees use critical applications and business services and companies implement policies for work in mobility, security is a primary concern for all network administrators. Tanaza has created a secure cloud infrastructure that separates instances of each customer and isolates the access points’ management traffic and connection to the cloud from the clients’ traffic, as well.

Tanaza is at the forefront in providing security updates for all its devices promptly. For example, the patch for the WPA2 breach known as “Krack” was released in less than 24 hours from the hack’s discovery, allowing all Tanaza Firwmare’s users to secure the wireless connection of all their clients connecting to the wireless LAN in no time.

In the case your enterprise uses wirelessly-connected devices, such as point-of-sale system (used in retail) and sensors (smart cities, hospitals, etc.), Tanaza makes your Wireless LAN secure and provides you with reliable management software. IoT initiatives launched by enterprises pose unprecedented security issues to wireless networks. Tanaza is creating tools to solve this problem, including the newly released Rogue Access Point detection system, which allows identifying devices broadcasting and SSID named as yours, trying to steal your clients’ data and in the worst cases, to sniff their traffic.

Tanaza allows you to detect and analyse these WiFi faults and problems.

 

Improving the network performance and avoiding interference

 

Network administrators need to deliver coverage and performance, ensuring to their users WLAN health and performance. Tanaza provides tools to improve your network performance, such as the automated channel selection avoiding interference. You can use Tanaza to scan beacons around your Access points and choose the channel accordingly. Also, you can let Tanaza do the job on your behalf and select automatically the channel with less interference any time the device reboots.

Reboots can be done manually through a command in the cloud interface, and they can also be scheduled so they happen during the night, without service outages for users and applications.

Tanaza’s intuitive monitoring tool also allows you to check in real-time the quality of the signal for each connected client so that you can identify coverage and interference problems within your network in no time.

Furthermore, this and other data is also available through APIs, so that you can build your own alerting system and troubleshoot the network before problems are noticed by other people. Tanaza allows you to be proactive in building a reliable and solid network, even if you’re using low-cost devices. For example, you might create your own web service which sends you push notifications on your phone in the case the MAC address of the CEO has bad signal, or when an access point has more than 20 people connected, when an access point has an excessive load, etc.

WiFi troubles won’t keep you up at night, as everything will be under control.

 

Unlimited scalability and reduced costs

 

With wirelessly-connected devices increasing at a rapid rate, and mobile devices becoming the most used ones to connect to the internet and work, WLAN is expected to transmit most of the internet traffic in the future.

The application layer, providing guest authentication, WiFi location-tracking services, and many other services, should run on reliable networking infrastructure. However, the costs of creating it are usually very high.

We understand that the increasing expectations of users conflict with the lack of budget and resources troubling network administrators. Users have very low tolerance for problems and performance issue, and solutions’ prices increase each year. Also, most solutions in the market lock you to a vendor’s brand, therefore preventing you from switching to another provider.

Tanaza provides a multi-vendor software that runs on top of low-cost to high-end access points, allowing any business, from SMBs to large enterprises, to benefit from a reliable networking infrastructure. Businesses using Tanaza reduce their CAPEX and are free to switch from one vendor to another, with no switching costs, when they need to. Furthermore, Tanaza’s management and monitoring platform work in the exact same way with all devices, stores the device configuration in the cloud for quick replacement of access points, is offered with a pay-as-you-go formula and is affordable for businesses of any size. Tanaza reduces OPEX and provides the flexibility you need in your fast-paced role.

Tanaza offers unlimited scalability in the number of access points and immediate provisioning and deployment. You will not need hardware controllers anymore, as the controlling layer will be in the cloud. Tanaza Cloud grows with your business and its features and compatibility list are continuously improving.

Why you should schedule your SSID access

Why you should schedule your SSID access

Tanaza features a captive portal that allows you to create up to 8 SSID by access points, a way for the network administrator to secure and separate accesses to the WiFi network. Indeed, each SSID should be set up according to the usage of the network.

For example, when deploying a WiFi network for a restaurant, the WiFi administrator might want to create different network access for the staff and the guests. To do so, the WiFi administrator can create a first SSID protected by a password for the staff, and another SSID for the guest with access through email authentication or social media. In this way, customers will access the SSID through a different door. However, a problem might occur when customers connect to the WiFi network within the closed hours of the restaurant, enjoying a free WiFi connection without any counterpart for the owner of the restaurant.

To solve this problem, we strongly encourage you to schedule your SSID access by setting hours of network’s availability.

Indeed, SSID time restriction allows you to deactivate your SSID when your shop closes so that nobody can access the internet through your Wi-fi network during the night for example.

The SSID availability is not currently featured by Tanaza but still, you can deactivate your SSID by going through your access points settings remotely.

Solution 1: enter to your cloud.tanaza.com account and click on the access point that you want to deactivate.
Click on “settings”, then “SSIDs”. Finally, switch the on/off button to turn off your access point.
Remember to activate it again when you want your SSID to be available.

Why you should schedule your SSID access
Why you should schedule your SSID access

Solution 2: another possibility for you is to deactivate the SSID by making him invisible.
Go on your SSID settings, click on “wireless security” and switch the button enable/disable to make your SSID invisible
Be careful, the SSID will be invisible only for new WiFi users, while WiFi users already registered will still access to your WiFi network if they are in the network area

Why you should schedule your SSID access
Why you should schedule your SSID access

Alternatively, this could be done by showing the SSID name on clients’ devices, while replacing the splash page with a message saying “WiFi guest access is available only between 9 AM and 6 PM at this location”.

In any cases, we strongly advise you to secure your WiFi guest access and to use a web content filtering to avoid any bad usage of your WiFi network.

Your opinion is valuable to us, so please let us know what you think about this feature idea.

Tanaza Firmware now available for Ubiquiti Networks’ UniFi AP AC PRO, AC LITE, AC in-wall (IW), AC Mesh, AC Mesh PRO, AC LR long range

With its latest release (firmware 2.17) in December 2017, Tanaza continues its firmware releases for the Ubiquiti Unifi AC access points, starting with the widely used UniFi AC Mesh Pro, UniFi LR (long range) and UniFi AC PRO.

UBNT’s UAP AC APs are widely used by managed solution providers and hotspot providers globally.

Just after a few months from the release of UBNT’s UAP AC APs Tanaza started developing the firmware for these products. In this way, Tanaza allows enterprise-level cloud-management of the whole UBNT’s Unifi 802.11ac series.

Among all Ubiquiti Unifi AC access points, the devices that are already compatible with Tanaza’s software are: Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC PRO, UniFi AC Lite, UniFi AC In-WALL (AC-IW), UniFi AC Mesh, UniFi AC Mesh PRO, and UniFi AC LR (AC Long Range).

Being a cloud-based software, Tanza allows network administrators to manage their multi-vendor devices from the cloud. Also, network admins can manage Ubiquiti Nanostations from the same dashboard they use for their UniFi devices.

Thanks to Tanaza’s software, it is possible to manage the access points from the cloud and create public hotspots with social login as authentication method. Tanaza replaces the stock firmware and adds enterprise configuration capabilities to multi-vendor devices, including TP-Link, Ubiquiti, D-Link, Netgear, Engenius, Ligowave, and others.

In early 2017, Tanaza implemented a new graphic interface and added many features to its software. Among them, it developed a captive portal that is 4.5X faster in comparison to the previous versions and up to 3x faster than other commonly used captive portals. Furthermore, Tanaza has promptly released a patch for the KRACK vulnerability for all Ubiquiti devices, so as to increase the security levels of all access points that run Tanaza’s firmware.

Tanaza allows scalable multi-site, multi-clients wireless network management and monitoring, and eliminates the need for hardware controllers thanks to its smart alerting system, zero-touch deployment, and centralized dashboard. Other valuable features of Tanaza’s software include a responsive and customizable captive portal with social login and social-actions-based login (Facebook Like and Check-in), a multi-role voucher-based login system, APIs, and integrations with Google Analytics and Mailchimp for wifi marketing campaigns.

Tanaza’s firmware can be installed and uninstalled on Ubiquiti Access Points easily, and the software is available for a 15-days free trial with unlimited clients and connected access points.

Top 10 best affordable 802.11ac access points in 2017

top 10 best 208.11ac access points in 2017

 

Let’s see in this article the 802.11ac wireless access points supported by Tanaza that stood out in 2017 in terms of performance and budget.

2017 is almost over and we want to provide the list of the 10 best 802.11ac Wi-Fi routers supported by Tanaza during the year. The selected access points are the right balance in terms of quality and price, as they provide high performance and are, at the same time, budget friendly.

 

10.  EnGenius EAP1200H

engenius EAP1200HThis dual-band AC access point has been designed for indoor deployments and can be easily installed on walls and ceilings. Thanks to its internal 5 dBi antenna, interferences are reduced and its reliability is high.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 2.4GHz – 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall;Ceiling
Power supply: PowerPlug

 

 

9. Open-Mesh OM5P-AC

Open-Mesh OM5P-ACThis dual-band device with PoE support is suitable for dense environments with a large number of access points and concurrent users that need high speed connection, such as restaurants, shopping malls, hotels and offices.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 18 dBm / 63 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Desktop;Wall
Power supply: DC;PoE

 

 

8. TP-Link AC1200 (Archer C5)

TP-Link AC1200 (Archer C5)The TP-Link AC1200 high-speed Wi-Fi router is very reliable and the guest network access it features allows secure wireless access for guests that use your same network.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 2.4GHz – 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Desktop
Power supply: DC

 

 

7. TP-Link AC1750 (Archer C7)

TP-Link AC1750 (Archer C7)The Tp-Link AC1750 device is easy to set up and features an intuitive configuration. By operating over both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, it ensures a great Wi-Fi performance and its 3 external dual-band antennas deliver high coverage with high speed.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 2.4GHz – 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Desktop
Power supply: DC

 

6. TP-Link TL-RE450

TP-Link TL-RE450This device is easy to install ad thanks to its small dimensions can be positioned anywhere easily. It works with the 802.11ac standard, ensuring high speed of dual band WiFi up to 1750 Mbps: in this way, high bandwidth-consuming tasks can be performed, i.e. video calls, video streaming (Netflix, Youtube) and file downloads.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 20 dBm / 100 mW @ 2.4GHz – 24 dBm / 251 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall
Power supply: DC

 

5. Ubiquiti UniFI AC In-Wall

Ubiquiti UniFI AC IWThis small and easily deployable device comes with a sleek design and is ideal for hotel roomsWe suggest installing the access point right above the room’s desks, so that it can provide wireless connectivity with a good coverage and be used for wired connectivity as well. Indeed, the UniFi AC IW features an ethernet port, thanks to which users can connect their laptop through a cable.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 22 dBm / 158 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall
Power supply: PoE

 

4. Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC LITE

Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC LITESuitable for indoor deployments and ceiling installation, this AC device has a minimal and elegant design, and only internal antennas, allowing you to install them in hotels, bars, restaurants, museums and many other locations.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 20 dBm / 100 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall;Ceiling
Power supply: PoE

 

3. Ubiquiti UniFi AC Mesh

Ubiquiti UniFi AC MeshThis 802.11AC access point comes with a weather-resistant enclosure that makes it particularly suitable for outdoor deployments. It is can be mounted on walls and poles, and its omni antennas allow to expand the signal coverage and path for an improved network connection.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 20 dBm / 100 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall;Pole
Power supply: PoE

 

 

2. LigoWave NFT 2ac

LigoWave NFT 2acThis LigoWave device of the Infinity series is very small, nice to see and is suitable for deployments with 100-150 users. It is ideal in any indoor deployment, particularly when in need for ceiling- and wall-mountable, PoE devices, with a minimal eye impact.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 27 dBm / 501 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall;Ceiling
Power supply: PoE

 

 

1. Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC LR

Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC LRThe Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC LR uses the latest 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard, perfect for high-speed browsing like streaming videos even with many concurrent users. Also, being provided with internal antennas, you can install it in many venues with a minimum aesthetic impact.

Specifications

Radio: 2.4 – 5
Max power: 24 dBm / 251 mW @ 2.4GHz – 30 dBm / 1000 mW @ 5GHz
Radiation shape: Omni
Installation: Wall;Ceiling
Power supply: PoE

Mikrotik routers: configuration of a wifi hotspot with login page

If you have ever tried to configure a Mikrotik hotspot, you probably know that it can take long and it the Winbox interface is not very easy to use. We at Tanaza have created a cloud-based tool that allows you to setup your Mikrotik wifi hotspots, in seconds. If you don’t believe it… watch our video, it’s only 2 minutes long!

 

Video-tutorial: how to configure a wifi hotspot with Tanaza – with customizable splash page and social login

 

Step-by-step guide

  1. Get a Mikrotik Router (check the list of supported Mikrotik routerboards here) and follow the instructions to install the Tanaza’s firmware.
  2. Login or sign up to https://cloud.tanaza.com. Signing up gives you a 15-days free trial.
  3. Click on add access point. From now on, you can apply configurations to your Mikrotik router remotely and monitor it from the cloud.
  4. Create your SSID and start configuring your hotspot login settings. You can customize your login splash page and use many authentication methods, including social login, and show users your video and image advertisements.
  5. Manage your Mikrotik wireless clients from https://dashboard.tanaza.com

 

Can I customize the Mikrotik Hotspot Login Page?

Once you have created and named your SSID, you can customize your hotspot login settings. You can apply one of the default templates to your login page, or create your own login page from scratch, using Tanaza’s Splash Page Editor.

Here is an overview of the settings you can apply to your Hotspot Login Page:

Add login methods. 

This is the first thing to do, as you have to select which authentication methods better apply to your business model and to the venue that offers wifi. Tanaza offers:

    • Voucher-based authentication, that works similarly to Mikrotik’s HTTP PAP authentication and MAC address authentication, apart from the fact that there isn’t any username to enter, only a password (that is the voucher code). It can be used both for free wifi and paid wifi.
    • Various social login methods, including Facebook, Twitter, etc., also with social engagement actions (Facebook Like and Facebook check-in)
    • Other authentication methods that allows users to exchange free wifi for their data, for example name, surname, email, phone (with SMS verification), and combinations of the above.

Voucher based authentication, when combined with social login methods or other methods, can work to provide a “Trial” free-of-charge wifi access for a certain period of time, after which users are required to authenticate again, through a paid wifi voucher.

If you like Mikrotik’s “HTTP cookie” authentication, you can set Tanaza’s “Remember me” features that creates a very similar customer experience. Users’ MAC addresses are saved and remember for a certain period of time, so that when they return to the location, they are automatically logged in. This provides a “WiFi-like-at-home” experience.

Show advertisements. 

You can change settings so that the splash page shows users your image and video advertisements. In contrast with Mikrotik hotspot system, that shows advertisements in the status page time after time, Tanaza’s hotspot systems shows the ads before authentication, directly in the login page. Uploaded ads can be of any format and can ether rotate randomly or time-based or link to external websites, that are listed in the walled garden.

Custom HTML widgets

You don’t need any coding capability to build your Mikrotik wifi hotspot with Tanaza. The Editor is drag-and-drop and very easy-to-use. But, if you want to add a custom html widget, you can do it!

Click here to discover what you can do with the splash page editor, in detail.

 

What Routerboards by Mikrotik can I use to enable a Tanaza WiFi hotspot?

Tanaza’s wifi hotspot system is compatible with some commonly used Mikrotik routers, including RB951-2HND, RB951-G-2HND and RB951-UI-2HND. All the compatible routerboards are listed here but we’re continuously working to support new devices. If you cannot find your model in the list, check our coming soon supported devices or request your model using this form.

While Mikrotik allows cloud management only of devices in its “cloud series’, the ones which name starts with CCR (cloud core router) of CCS (cloud core switches), Tanaza allows cloud management and cloud-managed public hotspot creation on top of common Mikrotik routerboard models.

The version of RouterOS is not relevant to setup a Mikrotik wifi hotspot with Tanaza, as Tanaza replaces Mikrotik firmware with its own firmware. Also Winbox is replaced by the Tanaza cloud platform, that can be reached at https://cloud.tanaza.com.

 

Does Tanaza feature a user management system?

Yes, Tanaza allows user management through its own system. The RouterOS and Mikrotik’s user manager are not enabled if you create a Tanaza wifi hotspot for your Mikrotik.

Tanaza’s hotspot system includes abuse control features, allowing you to limit each particular user’s session lenght, number of sessions per day, and some other parameters. It also allows to blacklist MAC addresses and show a customized message in the stop page.

 

Should I configure my own Radius AAA server?

By default, you don’t need to configure any Radius for AAA (authentication, authorization, accounting) server to create your Mikrotik wifi hotspot with Tanaza. You also don’t need Mikrotik’s Hotspot Gateway

Tanaza’s login page implements everything internally and doesn’t use the Mikrotik RouterOS radius server, so you don’t have to do anything special for your hotspot to work.

Tanaza’s login page cannot work with external Radius servers.

You can still use Tanaza’s cloud infrastructure to manage, monitor and control your access points from the cloud, create your own external splash page and optionally enable a Radius server, if you need to setup your custom one.

 

Can I customize the walled garden?

Tanaza, like Mikrotik’s wifi hotspot system, allows setting a custom walled garden, that permits users to bypass settings and access both http and https resources. The wildcard “*” is available.

Network administrators are allowed to set up their walled garden by writing both domains and IP addresses.