reporting received signal strength to remote side

Jason Straight jason
Tue Nov 18 17:09:31 PST 2003

Hash: SHA1

I'm on a quest. Everyone thinks I'm nuts when I mention this.

I've operated WISP's for years, we are (right now) using some orinoco/proxim 
OR's (Outdoor Routers) which serve as access points for our clients. The OR's 
have a "Wireless Link Test" function which allows you to see the signal that 
is being received by the Access point, _and also what's being received by the 
client from the AP!

Up until the latest firmwares for prism cards 1.5 and on I think, you could 
only see the clients recv'd signal if they had an orinoco card on their end 
too (prisms gave odd readings), so I figured it was a proprietary 
modification of the PHY layer on orinoco's part to include recv'd signal 
quality in the headers. But now that I've updated a few of my prism clients 
to 1.5, 1.7 firmwares I can see their received signal from the AP side. I can 
do this with windows or linux running hostap.

So I'd have to guess that the recv'd signal strength is being reported to the 
other side by the card firmware on the PHY layer, but when I mention this to 
anyone they think I'm a dumbass because 802.11 just doesn't support that. So 
can someone enlighten me as to how this received signal strength gets sent to 
the other side? Because I sure would love to be able to view the signal being 
received by the other side from linux as I can from windows or from the AP :)

- -- 
Jason Straight
jason at
jason at
SkyCon Networks
phone: (231)627-3528
ICQ: 1796276
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