The management of Riordan Manufacturing has requested an analysis of adding wireless technology to the existing wide area network (WAN). The organization's goal in considering wireless technology is to keep the network current while controlling costs. The purpose of this document is to provide a basic understanding of wireless technology and outline what the organization must consider in determining the viability of wireless within the organization.
The advent of wireless technology is due in part to the ever increasing demands for mobility and flexibility in our daily lives. A wireless LAN (WLAN) is based on cellular architecture where the system is subdivided into cells, with each cell being controlled by a base station called an access point.
There are several different wireless LAN technologies available each with varying levels of standardization and interoperability. The technologies available for use in WLANs include infrared, UHF (narrowband) radios, and spread spectrum radios. The two spread spectrum techniques that are most prevalent are frequency hopping and direct sequence. The choice of radio technology may be less important than the wireless networking software selected which can also have a major impact on system performance and throughput. In additional to the technical factors noted, many business factors that the organization must also consider when selecting a WLAN vendor.
In order to properly evaluate a WLAN vendor, it is important for Riordan to make a list of requirements, including current and future needs. Matching the organization's requirements against the offerings of each WLAN vendor will allow Riordan to shorten the list of prospective solutions. Riordan may discover that no single vendor will match all of the current and future WLAN requirements. In this case, Riordan must consider future product plans with the vendors to determine which offers the...