+39 02 8718 8553 sales@tanaza.com

How to calculate WiFi network bandwidth requirements

Network Bandwidth

How to calculate WiFi network bandwidth requirements

Network bandwidth is an essential factor in the design and maintenance of a functional WLAN. When building the infrastructure, you need to make a careful detection of how much bandwidth you will need to plan the right balance between performance and cost correctly.
How can you calculate WiFi bandwidth needs when designing the network? What specific considerations are involved?

In this article, we will present the reasons why it is fundamental to consider and adequately calculate the bandwidth requirements of the WiFi network you are going to deploy, to perform the most reliable network experience.

What is bandwidth in networking?

Bandwidth is the capacity of a channel to transmit data. During the transmission, the information is sent in a binary system, a language that encodes data using only two symbols (often defined as “1” and “0”, or “on” and “off”), each of which is called a bit.

The basic unit of this language, the byte, is composed of 8 bits. The bandwidth determines, therefore, the number of bytes that can be transmitted on the connection. The unit of measurement is the bits per second (bps). For example, a low definition video lasting 15 seconds, weighing 1 Megabyte, can be downloaded from an Internet site on your computer in 3-5 minutes if the connection is made via modem (56 kbps) or ISDN line (from 64 to 128 kbps). The same action takes a few seconds instead if the connection is broadband, like the one with the optical fibers (over 1000 Gbps).

Network bandwidth is the capacity of a network communications link to transmit the maximum volume of data from one point to another over a computer network or Internet connection in a given amount of time, usually one second. Bandwidth has the same meaning of capacity, and defines the data transfer rate.

Bandwidth, though, is not a measure of network speed.

As a matter of fact, the words “bandwidth” and “speed” are often misused as synonymous. The explanation of this misunderstanding can be, in part, due to their use in advertisements by ISPs that refer to speeds when they mean bandwidth. Indeed, speed refers to the rate at which data can be sent, while the definition of bandwidth is the capacity for that speed.

Why is it so important to calculate network bandwidth requirements before deploying a network?

Bandwidth can be compared to the volume of water that can flow through a water pipe. If the pipe is bigger, the water can flow in a massive quantity through it at one time. Bandwidth functions in the same way. So, the more bandwidth a data connection has, the more data it can send and receive at one time.

Consider that in any kind of deployment location, there are bandwidth limits. This means that there is a constraint to space for the data to flow. Therefore, multiple devices in a single area must share the bandwidth. Some devices request much more bandwidth than others. Greater bandwidth is absolutely necessary if proper speed must be maintained on different devices.

When do you need to calculate bandwidth?

Streaming, gaming, and other high usage activities demand a certain amount of bandwidth speed to get the best experience without buffering or lag. And the more bandwidth your network can deliver, the faster your devices will run.

Before you start designing your WiFi network, you should follow some steps to achieve your bandwidth goal.

1. Estimate how many devices will be connected to your WiFi network simultaneously

The majority of mid-high end wireless access points and wireless routers can have 255 devices connected at a time. Nevertheless, just because you can hypothetically connect 255 devices to a single WiFi router/access point doesn’t mean you should.
Each computer or device added to your network will degrade the bandwidth available to the other devices using the same connection. All those devices share the same wireless network and the same Internet connection from your broadband service provider. In this case, the congestion isn’t necessarily with the wireless connections. Still, it is with the amount of traffic or bandwidth that can pass through the Internet router to your broadband service provider.

Example
If you want to estimate how many concurrent devices will be connected, consider, for example, a hotel with 18 rooms for 2 people each. The hotel has 36 guests if it is fully-booked. If each guest has 1.2 devices, you have around 43 devices in total. We can assume that only 20 of 43 can be connected or generate significant traffic at the same time.

2. Calculate the application bandwidth requirement

Your bandwidth requirements also depend on the usage of the Internet your guests perform while being connected to your WiFi network. Some Internet applications, such as web browsing and instant messaging require low bandwidth, whereas other applications, such as video streaming and VoIP calls, require high-level bandwidth usage.

To implement a high-performance WLAN, network designers must consider external variables, such as the applications’ requirements in bandwidth and throughput networks.
Tanaza offers a useful way to calculate the bandwidth requirement of a network. We have created the tool “Access Point Selector” to suggest the ideal access point per location and application type. However, it’s also helpful to estimate the required bandwidth per-user connection. You can try it here.

In the image below, you can check the bandwidth needed and the throughput required for the mainstream applications, such as messaging, e-mails, social media, video calls, VoIP calls, web browsing, file sharing, and video streaming.

Network Bandwidth Requirements

Or if you want to go more specific, the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) provides a set of guidelines for Mbps needed based on digital activity.

Alternatively, you can measure the bandwidth requirements by usage. The chart below compares minimum download speed (Mbps) needs for light, moderate, and high household use with one, two, three, or four devices at a time (such as a laptop, tablet, or game console).

Network Bandwidth Requirements by Usage

So, let’s keep the hotel’s example fully booked with a maximum capacity of 36 guests. Assuming each guest has 1.2 devices, you have around 43 devices, of which 35 are connected to the network simultaneously. All of them are browsing different applications.

If you are using our Access Point Selector tool, in a hotel with 35 concurrent users employing chatting/messenger services, e-mail, social media, web browsing, and video streaming, you will have, as a result, an estimated bandwidth per user of 3.33 Mbit/s. This means that the hotel would need at minimum: Location bandwidth – 117 Mbit/s.

3. Calculate network bandwidth requirements

As previously said, the measurement unit for bandwidth is bits per second (bps). But, modern networks have greater capacity. They are mostly measured in millions of bits per second (megabits per second, or Mbps) or billions of bits per second (gigabits per second, or Gbps).

Furthermore, bandwidth connections can be symmetrical when the data capacity is the same in uploading or downloading data, and asymmetrical when download and upload capacity are not the same. In asymmetrical connections, upload capacity is usually smaller than the download capacity.

In addition to testing, you have to calculate how much bandwidth is needed to run all your networks’ applications. To understand how much capacity you need, you must calculate the maximum number of users who might be using the network connection simultaneously and multiply that number times the bandwidth capacity required by each application.

To calculate the bandwidth need required you can use the following formula:

(Application Throughput) x (Number of concurrent Users) = Aggregate Application Throughput

Going back to the hotel example, 

(3.33 Mbps) x 35 concurrent users = 117 Mbps 

Note: the result you get here might exceed the bandwidth that the internet service providers offer.

When calculating your bandwidth needs, it’s a theoretical demand upper bound estimate that can help you to calculate the number of access points needed to support the bandwidth demands in a specific location.

If you want to calculate the number of access points needed in a deployment, check our latest article Network Capacity Planning – Wireless Capacity vs Coverage.

If you are deploying wireless networks, read also WiFi network design – What to take into consideration when designing WLANs, there are many factors to consider to plan out your network deployments thoroughly.

Would you like to stay up-to-date with the latest news and trends about the WiFi Industry and the Tanaza platform?

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter so you don’t miss a thing!

Mockup-tanaza-os

Easier installation of Classic Hotspot on MikroTik devices from Windows

Tavola-disegno-2

Easier installation of Classic Hotspot Firmware on MikroTik devices from Windows

Now it is possible to install Classic Hotspot in a MikroTik device (see the list of compatible MikroTik devices) using a Windows computer in a much easier way than in the past. Our Customer Success team has created a step-by-step guide to walk users through the installation process using some free tools.

Thanks to this new procedure, available since February 2020, installing the firmware on MikroTik devices does not require anymore being physically where the AP is to reset it. Also, a virtual machine is not required anymore and the whole process takes much less time than before.

Read the article How to install Classic Hotspot Firmware on MikroTik devices from Windows.

Compatible MikroTik devices with Classic Hotspot

MikroTik hardware is well-suited for any size deployment. Primarily, the devices are used in the WISP environment. However, the devices also can be seen in enterprise deployments. Overall, the devices are low priced, which allows users to save costs when deploying networks. 

The hardware is easy-to-configure, and when paired with the Classic Hotspot platform, users get a full set of professional features to manage WiFi networks and social hotspots with full software support from Classic Hotspot.

Advantages of using Classic Hotspot with MikroTik devices

By empowering MikroTik devices with Tanaza Classic’s firmware, users get a full set of professional features to manage WiFi networks and social hotspots.

With Tanaza Classic, users can create SSIDs for guests with the social login or email authentication. Also, it allows data collection and insights on customers to run targeted email marketing campaigns. Finally, users can control all networks remotely, from a single dashboard and configure each access point easily.

Have you ever tried to configure a Mikrotik hotspot?
Read the article Mikrotik routers: configuration of a WiFi hospot with login page.

List of MikroTik devices currently compatible with Classic Hotspot

Tanaza Classic supports the following MikroTik devices:

MikroTik hAP AC Lite and hAP AC Lite TC

These devices are dual-concurrent access points, which provide Wi-Fi coverage for 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies at the same time. Both devices are suitable for indoor deployments, thanks to their compact dimensions allowing users to install the devices in offices, B&Bs, bars, and also in schools.

The only difference between the two devices is the sleek design of the hAP AC Lite TC device, which can be positioned either horizontally (desktop) or vertically (tower case) to save space. The  hAP AC Lite version can only be placed horizontally.

unnamed-2

MikroTik hAP AC Lite

400_rb952ui5ac2ndtc-1

MikroTik hAP AC Lite TC

Device Specification Details
CPU nominal frequency 650MHz
Size of RAM 64MB
PoE-out ports Ether5
PoE input Passive PoE
(10-28V input voltage)
Ethernet ports Five 10/100Mbps
Wireless 2.4 GHz standards 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)
Wireless 5 GHz standards 802.11a/n/ac (Wi-Fi 5)

MikroTik RB951Ui-2HnD and RB951G-2HnD

The RB951Ui-2HnD is a wireless SOHO AP while the RB951G-2HnD is a wireless SOHO Gigabit AP. Both devices come with a new generation Atheros CPU and more processing power. On the technical side, the differences between these two devices are minimal.

The RB951Ui-2HnD device has five Ethernet ports while the RB951G-2HnD has five Gigabit Ethernet ports. Besides that, both devices have one USB 2.0 port and a high power 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n wireless AP with built-in antennas.

902_m-2

MikroTik RB951Ui-2HnD

903_m

MikroTik RB951G-2HnD

Device Specification RB951Ui-2HnD RB951G-2HnD
CPU nominal frequency 600MHz 600MHz
Size of RAM 128MB 128MB
PoE-out ports Ether5 N/A
PoE input Passive PoE
(9-30V input voltage)
Passive PoE
(9-30V input voltage)
Ethernet ports Five 10/100 Mbps Five 10/100/1000 Mbps
Wireless 2.4 GHz standards 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4) 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)

MikroTik RBwAP2nD

The  RBwAP2nD is a weatherproof wireless access point. It’s perfect for outdoor installations where wireless access is required. Thanks to its unobtrusive look and sleek design the device can be fixed to any external wall from the inside of the case. It does blend perfectly into any environment, however, it is not recommended for high-density environments.

400_rbwap2nd

MikroTik RBwAP2nD

Device Specification Details
CPU nominal frequency 650MHz
Size of RAM 64MB
PoE-out ports N/A
PoE input 802.3af/at
(11-57 input voltage)
Ethernet ports One 10/100 Mbps
Wireless 2.4 GHz standards 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)

MikroTik BaseBox2 RB912G-2HnD

This device is a solid and waterproof outdoor 2.4GHz wireless access point. It comes with two SMA connectors for connecting external antennas. The device also has a miniPCLe slot, which allows users to install an extra wireless card, resulting in a dual band device.

662_m

MikroTik BaseBox2 RB912G-2HnD

Device Specification Details
CPU nominal frequency 600MHz
Size of RAM 64MB
PoE-out ports N/A
PoE input Passive PoE
(8-30 input voltage)
Ethernet ports One 10/100/1000 Mbps
Wireless 2.4 GHz standards 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)

Future MikroTik devices compatibility

In 2019 Tanaza released its new platform for cloud management, which adds a new set of features for network managers. The new Tanaza platform is compatible with Tanaza Classic and allows customers to manage, monitor, and control their access points intuitively and easily. 

Customers using Tanaza Classic can switch to the new platform by installing the TanazaOS operating system on their devices. TanazaOS will soon be compatible with the MikroTik devices currently available for Tanaza Classic. Also, many more devices are in the roadmap for the near future. 

Furthermore, the device compatibility will be available to the TanazaOS Installer, a software application developed by Tanaza which allows users to install the TanazaOS operating system on compatible devices. The process is straightforward and does not need any manual procedure.

At Tanaza, we continuously work to support more access points and make WiFi network deployments seamless. Stay tuned, visiting the “What’s next” page where we regularly update about upcoming releases. Alternatively, visit Tanaza’s Blog and read about new features, device compatibility, and industry news. 

Are you ready to test the new Tanaza platform?

Experience the power of WiFi cloud management in seconds with our free interactive demo.

Try our interactive demo
Mockup-tanaza-os

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Tanaza features a splash page editor that allows in few minutes the WiFi network administrator to create and customise the authentication page of a public hotspot. In this article, you will find the 4 rules to create an effective splash page for your WiFi users in order to leverage your WiFi network.

 

Easy and fast access to the WiFi network

When users visualise the splash page, you have a few seconds to convince them to log in. Accessing your public hotspot should not require too many efforts otherwise, you are taking the risk to loose potential WiFi users.

The best way to obtain an effective splash page is to make it simple and easy to use.

 

Don’t add too many items, focus on the essential

When creating a splash page, be careful not to confound simplicity with shortage otherwise, you could lose WiFi users with too many information on the landing page. This happens because we don’t respect a few design rules.

But which are these four design rules for an effective splash page?

 

1. Do not add too much content to the WiFi splash page

Less is more is the universal good design rule.

By putting just a few contents in the splash page you allow them to focus on the essentials items and you make the UI intuitive and immediate. When users click on your WiFi network name to access the internet, they expect a fast and easy way to log in.

Instead, they often deal with too complex pages, with too much information, which makes the login process too long and complex.

Add to the WiFi splash page only the essential items: logo, a welcome text, a few login methods. If you need users to accept your terms and conditions, ask your legal consultant to reduce the amount of text to a minimum (eventually link to the full text of terms and conditions).

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

 

 

2. Use a few colours in your WiFi splash page
 The human mind needs time to elaborate the information, and this takes some effort. A splash page with five colours is more complex to understand than one with just one or two colours. Using a few colours, you allow users to relax and focus, making the WiFi access easier.

Choose monochromatic backgrounds or simple images, with just a few items and a uniform colour set. If you use many login methods (e.g. three social login methods) reduce the amount of space that each button takes, so that the page is less coloured.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

3. Focus the attention on key elements

To make your splash page more intuitive, use some tricks to focus users on the most important elements.

 

Use the advertising tool to publish ads on your WiFi splash page

Use the Tanaza advertising tool to show advertising banners and videos. This way, you will focus your users’ attention on the show!

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Use bold for titles

Help users to quickly examine the content in your page. Bold your titles (the most important message) and eventually complete the message with a normally formatted text. Using bold titles helps users read your message and login instructions.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Put some space between the elements

As in a book, distinguish the various elements in the splash page with some space and interline. Using white space helps to focus the users’ attention on single elements, such as your logo, text, or buttons.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Use images with a clear meaning

Don’t use images as a decoration, instead choose images that reflect the message you want to send and your brand image. Or, use them to drive emotions (e.g. the image of a smile, or a sunset).

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

4. Make your Wifi login page accessible

Make your WiFi splash page easy to access for anyone. Small text fonts, clear colours, or small buttons (hard to click from mobile devices) make the login experience too complex for someone.

How to make a WiFi splash page accessible?

 

Make the text readable

Use a larger font size, at least 20pt. Don’t try to be original by using complex font, for example, a font simulating handwriting, as they are less easy to read and less intuitive.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Create some contrast

Use a clear colour for text on a dark background, or the opposite. Create contrast by making the whole page clearer or darker and don’t use coloured rectangles under the text.

Create contrast between elements: if you use blue login buttons, use a red or yellow background.

image6

Move buttons to the bottom

Make the experience better for mobile device users. Put the elements at the bottom by using the footer component in the Tanaza splash page editor, you’ll make the click from mobile devices easier.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Offer a way-out

If you use a social login method, offer an alternative method of authentication via email. Not all people have a social account or want to use it; some might prefer the email, instead.

4 rules to build the perfect splash page for your WiFi hotspot

Conclusion

Creating an effective splash page is not hard. Do not fill it with stuff: use just a few images, a few colours, a small amount of text and a few login methods.

Focus the attention on the key elements and make the UI simple, by using less colours. Make it also accessible, by using a large font size, contract, and moving buttons to the bottom.

If you want to collect users’ data through WiFi, use social login together with another authentication method such as the email login.

If you want to comment on this article, for example by adding your own examples of splash pages, we’ll be happy to provide some feedback!

What WiFi hotspot growth means for your business

What WiFi hotspot growth means for your business

Business man uses wifi hotspot to growth his business

The world is quietly experiencing a “hotspot revolution.” Since 2015, the world’s total count of public WiFi hotspots has grown exponentially. A Cisco research found 64.2 million public hotspots operating at the end of 2015. And this growth is accelerating—by the end of 2022, Cisco projects 432.5 million global public hotspots.

Thanks to near-ubiquitous public WiFi, on-demand connectivity is no longer seen as a convenience or privilege. Just as you’d expect to find running water in every public bathroom you visit, you’re entitled to expect publicly accessible WiFi for your laptop or mobile device.

GM, an American automaker, includes optional WiFi data plans in many new vehicles. Comcast, an American telecom provider, is using its millions of home wireless routers to build a massive WiFi hotspot network accessible to anyone with a Comcast account. Cafes without WiFi are now virtually unheard of. Add to that the fact that potentially signing up to use a hotspot over registering for your own WiFi account in the US might be cheaper, and hotspots might just be the solution to the American internet provider problem.

Simply put, it’s impossible to ignore the incredible rate of WiFi hotspot growth and the public’s dramatically escalating standards for convenient access. Here are four potential takeaways for your business.

 

How WiFi hotspots can benefit your business

WiFi isn’t just for cafes and train stations

There was a time when WiFi was a novelty that could only be found at coffee shops and major public gathering places, such as transit hubs and city parks. But that hasn’t been the case for some time. In the past several years, WiFi has morphed from a value-added customer perk to a must-have feature for virtually any business with any sort of public space component.

Here’s a small sampling of the myriad uses for public WiFi in various economic niches:

  • Retail. In-store WiFi access points provide on-demand access for prospective customers as they browse inventory, allowing for easy price comparisons, photography, and peer consultations. Retailers with mobile pay platforms can capture more revenue with mobile “buy now” buttons that finalize sales before prospects leave the store.
  • Healthcare. Patients and their family members can spend significant amounts of time waiting for appointments and news in public spaces. WiFi in waiting rooms allows these people to stay connected during those long, often tedious periods. Likewise, patients well enough to surf the Internet (and allowed to use computing devices) appreciate on-demand access in hospital rooms and wards.
  • Hospitality. Hotels have turned the corner toward free, on-demand public WiFi in all public spaces, including lobbies, restaurants, lounges, conference areas, gyms, pools, and outdoor gathering places. For many hotels, guests and their associates represent a huge captive audience that may be receptive to branded marketing, such as ads for the hotel bar’s happy hour and room discounts for longer stays.
  • Transportation. Public WiFi is a natural fit in airports, train stations, bus depots, public plazas, and even trains and buses. Many cities have deployed public WiFi networks in underground rapid transit stations, subway cars, and other transit vehicles as well, creating new advertising bandwidth that complements existing billboard and wall ads in these places. And like hotels, airports’ gate areas boast massive captive audiences and dozens—or hundreds—of nearby businesses that could potentially market their services. Plus, airports are big places. To properly accommodate demand, airport restaurants, cafes, and lounges all need their own APs—a major opportunity for enterprising resellers willing to play in the transportation segment.
  • Education. Many university campuses are now fully covered by public WiFi networks, to the point where institutions that have yet to deploy campus-wide WiFi are viewed as laggards. Though data remains limited on this point, it’s conceivable that a lack of public WiFi could affect student enrollment decisions.
  • Sport. From youth facilities to professional arenas, sporting environments offer a rich opportunity for WiFi resellers. Fans snap pictures, share social status updates, and browse for information at incredible rates. What’s more, captive, often festive fans comprise an airport-scale audience that’s receptive to targeted marketing.

This stunning diversity of WiFi use represents a tremendous opportunity for entrepreneurs who resell WiFi services and maintain APs. As public WiFi migrates from “optional expense” to “overhead cost” on ever more balance sheets in ever more niches, more use cases are sure to emerge. And that promises to make it easier than ever to sell operators on the benefits of onsite hotspots.

 

Social Engagement Is Exploding

According to Hootsuite, in 2018 the 88% of Facebook users accessed the platform via mobile device, and 95% of Facebook visits were made on smartphones and tablets. Only 31.8% of visits were made on desktops or laptops. And Facebook is just one example of the clear-as-day nexus between mobile devices and social media. Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and various regional social networks have become mobile forces to be reckoned with.

Much of this exploding social engagement is happening on public WiFi networks, as mobile users visit retailers’ websites, check in at cafes or restaurants, share pictures of merchandise with friends, or simply call out a venue in a social post.

As WiFi hotspot access grows, users will become increasingly accustomed to accessing social media via public WiFi—and thus for late-adopting clients to see the value of offering WiFi access to the general public. Clients can and should provide social login capabilities on their customized splash pages, allowing visitors to log into the network using their Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn,  or even VKontakte accounts. Every visitor who completes the social login process provides valuable demographic and contact information, opening up onsite and future marketing opportunities.

 

Demand for Premium WiFi Has Never Been Higher

Now that public WiFi is a necessity for businesses and institutions looking to remain competitive, it’s natural to assume that individual users—clients and customers—are no longer willing to pay for it. This is certainly true in fragmented markets, such as food service, where customers can easily leave an outlet that charges for WiFi and walk down the street to a competitor that does not.

But it’s not true everywhere. Captive customers, such as sports fans and air travelers, are still willing to pay for basic WiFi. More importantly, affluent customers and those who aren’t personally footing the bill for their data usage (such as business travellers with expense accounts) are willing to pay for higher tiers of WiFi service, notably in crowded environments with limited bandwidth. Hotels, convention centres, and transport nodes are particularly well-suited for tiered or premium WiFi services, which offer an additional opportunity for clients to monetize their networks and APs.

There may even be opportunity for downmarket clients: According to a Cisco white paper, Canadian coffee-and-donuts chain Tim Hortons provides faster connection speeds, an abbreviated sign-in process, and unlimited data use for customers who provided detailed demographic information at first login.

 

WiFi Roaming Offers New Data Capture Opportunities

The same Cisco white paper outlines an additional opportunity to forge new revenue streams from the ongoing hotspot revolution: WiFi roaming.

Like cellular roaming, WiFi roaming allows mobile users access to public hotspots (or home hotspots with public-facing access, such as the public-private network Comcast is currently planning) under other carriers’ purview. Many carriers now offer roaming arrangements, often on an international scale, for a fixed monthly fee. According to Cisco, “The ultimate goal is to make WiFi roaming as smooth and easy to use as the [cellular] network.”

As WiFi roaming becomes a standard component of mobile service, costs are likely to drop, enticing more mobile users to take advantage of the service and connect to out-of-network WiFi hotspots that they might previously have avoided. Every user who does so creates a new opportunity for WiFi clients to monetize their APs—particularly if they use a customized splash page with social sign-in capabilities to capture valuable data from prospective customers. Captured data from previously unreachable customers is an enticing prospect for advertisers—one that WiFi resellers would be advised to hit hard and often when describing the benefits of public WiFi to prospective clients.

 

Final Thoughts

It’s no longer debatable: The hotspot revolution is irreversible. For businesses with any sort of public space component, the situation demands an urgent, focused response. Lost time could equal lost revenue—and, perhaps, a permanent loss of market share to competitors quicker to embrace the power of public WiFi.

The good news is that the hotspot revolution creates a tremendous opportunity for entrepreneurs who recognize the potential of cloud-managed WiFi networks. With public WiFi no longer an optional perk for businesses that want to remain competitive, the concept nearly sells itself. All you need to make your cloud-managed WiFi business work is a clear vision and a willingness to put in the necessary work.

If you need a software to easily set up and manage your wireless networks, Tanaza offers the best-in-class cloud-based software for WiFi network and social hotspot management. Its Hotspot System allows WiFi network administrators to set up and configure a captive portal for their public hotspots, which can be easily customized with Tanaza’s splash page editor. Through the captive portal, WiFi users can authenticate using their personal credentials (such as their email or phone number) or their preferred social networking account (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn…). Businesses that provide WiFi to their clients can leverage the captive portal as an advertising tool, by inserting image or video advertisement directly on the splash page, and as a marketing tool by collecting useful WiFi user data and segmenting it for marketing purposes. By integrating Tanaza with third-party applications, businesses can use the data collected to communicate information via targeted email marketing campaigns and to interact with users with engaging content that will be seen by them during the authentication process.

 

Published by Claudia Barbarisi, written by Flynn Robinson.
Flynn is a self-employed writer and programmer, whose days generally involve a coffee shop or two with excellent, free WiFi.

Juniper Networks acquires Mist Systems for $405 million

Juniper Networks acquires Mist Systems for $405 million

Juniper acquires Mist System

Juniper Networks has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Mist Systems, a wireless LAN vendor pioneering AI-driven WLAN, for $405 million.

With this acquisition, announced on March 4th, 2019, Juniper will combine Mist’s WLAN platform with its existing wired LAN, SD-Wan and security systems to provide enterprise customers with a complete solution.

Mist Systems manages its operations via a modern cloud microservices architecture, and its technology includes machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities. In early 2018 Mist developed an AI-driven Virtual Network Assistant, Marvis, to simplify wireless operations, and provide insight into client and network behaviour. Mist has also leveraged patented virtual Bluetooth LE technology together with WiFi to deliver location-based wireless services to customers, such as proximity notifications and traffic analytics.

Mist’s acquisition will expand Juniper’s presence in the cloud-managed segment of the wireless networking market and will allow the company to offer a software-defined solution that simplifies operations, lowers operational costs and improves the user experience. Moreover, Juniper plans to leverage Mist’s AI capabilities by extending them across Juniper’s networking portfolio for software-defined architectures.

“With our planned acquisition of Mist Systems, we are not only expanding our enterprise portfolio into the wireless arena but also staking claim to AI-driven operations in the era of multi-cloud,” Juniper CEO Rami Rahim stated in a blog post. “Wireless is the most strategic place to start as we adopt AI for IT. It’s also more than just wireless. AI-driven operations must extend across the whole IT stack if it is to reach its full potential.”

The acquisition of Mist is expected to close during Juniper Networks’ second fiscal quarter, subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

Related articles:

Open Mesh acquired by Datto: what’s next for Open Mesh customers?

WiFi Alliance announces Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6

https://www.tanaza.com/tanazaclassic/blog/over-485000-ubiquiti-devices-exposed-to-ddos-attack/

Over 485,000 Ubiquiti devices exposed to DDoS attack

Over 485,000 Ubiquiti devices exposed to DDoS attack

Ubiquiti Devices Exposed to DDOS Attack
Ubiquiti Networks is currently working on a fix for a recently discovered security issue affecting its devices. This security issue has been exploited by attackers since July 2018.

According to an internet scan conducted by US cyber-security firm Rapid7, this vulnerability affects over 485,000 devices around the world. Most of the exposed devices are located in Brazil, followed by the US, Spain and Poland.

The vulnerability is not specific to one Ubiquiti device, and is found on a wide variety of the vendor’s high-grade WISP equipment. The majority of the exposed Ubiquiti devices are NanoStation, AirGrid, LiteBeam, PowerBeam and NanoBeam products, and 17,000 of these devices have already been defaced.

Jon Hart, senior security researcher for Rapid7, states in a security alert that attackers are exploiting a “discovery service” running on port 10,001. Ubiquiti included it on its devices so that the company and internet service providers (ISPs) can use it to find them on the internet and in closed networks. This service has been exploited by attackers to carry out DDoS amplification attacks.

These attacks were first spotted by Jim Troutman, co-founder of NNENIX (Northern New England Neutral Internet Exchange). According to Troutman, attackers are sending small packets of 56 bytes to port 10,001 on Ubiquiti devices, that are reflecting and relaying the packets to a target IP address amplified to a size of 206 bytes.

The exploitation attempts are still in an initial stage but, according to Rapid7, the amplification factor – that is currently 3.67 – can go up to 30-35. Attackers could find a way to carry out DDoS attacks in excess of 1Tbps, which is described by Rapid7 as “a crippling amount of traffic to all but the most fortified infrastructure”.

At the moment this discovery protocol “does not appear to suffer from multi-packet responses”, as we read in Rapid7’s security alert. This makes exploitation extremely hard as attackers can only “reflect” small amounts of DDoS traffic.

Ubiquiti already announced that it was preparing a security patch even if, in its current form, the protocol does not seem to be particularly harmful.

“To our current knowledge, this issue cannot be used to gain control of network devices or to create a DDoS attack,” Ubiquiti Networks said. “As a temporary workaround for this issue while it is being investigated and resolved by the development team, network operators can block port 10,001 at the network perimeter,” the hardware maker added.

Even though the biggest exploitation attempts have only been discovered recently, Rapid7 said that the first attacks attempting to exploit Ubiquiti’s discovery service were detected last July, when several Ubiquiti users reported problems related to the access of SSH services on their Ubiquiti equipment.

Related articles:

Open Mesh acquired by Datto: what’s next for Open Mesh customers?

WiFi Alliance announces Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6

https://www.tanaza.com/tanazaclassic/blog/update-2019-the-list-of-supported-openwrt-wireless-access-points-vendors/