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UNIFI NETWORK SETUP

PROJECT SUMMARY

  • Our client was having issue with poor WiFi reception and network outages
  • After analyzing their current setup, we provided them with a vastly superior solution and detailed the components they would need to purchase
  • After setting up the new hardware and configuring additional network settings, the client has a much more suitable setup without dealing with outages and poor reception any longer

KEY SUCCESSES

Assessed client's preexisting setup

Provided detailed hardware costs to client before proceeding with plan

Clearly communicated the options for a better networking setup

Successful installation and configuration of new network

Phase 1: The Problem

Objective – To enhance WiFi and general network stability  

A Sequim client called us to investigate issues they were having with WiFi reception and network outages. The existing network appliances at this office were having frequent problems due to the size of the office and the placement of the wireless antennas.  

They were using an “all-in-one” device down in their basement, WiFi included, where it’s of no benefit to them (their office is ALL upstairs on the next floor level). This meant that the signal had to travel diagonally to the upstairs area, which is an extremely poor placement plan. Stronger antennas or devices can help with this but WiFi works best when it’s on the same floor as the users. 

“They were using an “all-in-one” device down in their basement, WiFi included, where it’s of no benefit to them (their office is ALL upstairs on the next floor level).

Phase 2: Design Solution

We presented options to setup a UniFi network system where each device in the network is managed and monitored through an online dashboard. This breaks up the “all-in-one” unit into 4 components that each handle a different task and do it much better as a result. This also helps isolate where problems are coming from in the event that network issues arise.  

In addition, we recommended moving the WiFi antenna upstairs, where their office is. This would entail purchasing 4 different components: 

  • Security Gateway - $125 
    • This device sits between your network and the rest of the world. It provides an “umbrella” of security for all devices underneath it, or traffic passing through it, similar to a gatekeeper.  
  • Controller Device - $95 
    • All UniFi systems require a Controller. This device provides a central location for managing all the UniFi devices and their settings. 
  • Access Point - $80 
    • This is the device that houses the WiFi antenna’s and broadcasts the wireless signal. 
  • UniFi PoE Switch - $95 
    • Provides power to connected devices and routes network traffic over to the appropriate networks. 

Client agreed to this proposal and we assisted them in ordering the required equipment. 

 

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Phase 3: Execution

We setup new Security Gateway after noting settings from the old hardware. In some cases, this entails getting some information from the Internet Service provider to get the internet connection working.  

With the Gateway online, setup of the Controller can proceed. The controller is setup with all of the various options regarding network related settings which, in turn, are applied to any connected UniFi devices (Gateway, AP, Switch). 

Additional network settings are configured and tested (making sure there is no cross-talk between guests and internal office equipment for example). Also, a survey is made of the area to make sure there is no radio interference from other WiFi access points in the area. 

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