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What is Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS)? Part 1

Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS) enables radio systems operating in the 5GHz band to identify radar radio transmissions that must be protected from interference. Through Dynamic Frequency Selection, non-radar radios scan the Dynamic Frequency Selection channel for a minute. If radar is detected, radios are required to change channels. If not, the radio can go ahead with the selected frequency channel, but if a radio is on a Dynamic Frequency Selection channel and radar is detected at any point the radio must change channels.

DFS affects wireless networks with numerous adjacent non-centrally controlled access points. To conform to DFS rules, wireless networks access points should automatically choose frequency channels with low interference levels.

Dynamic Frequency Selection is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission, and wireless LAN (WLAN) hardware and software must conform to this rule. WLANs operate in the 5GHz band that Dynamic Frequency Selection applies to, so they may encounter priority users like government, radar, or weather services.

All WLAN hardware must be Dynamic Frequency Selection certified, and if it is not, the WLAN hardware cannot be used on Dynamic Frequency Selection channels.

DFS will affect your WLAN deployment depending on your channel plan. For the typical WLAN deployment you need three non-overlapping channels to avoid interference. If you choose to or must bond channels, for instance if you are using 802.11ac tech from CTS Cabling, you may not have all of the channels you require.

When using 802.11ac tech from CTS Cabling, it operates exclusively in the 5GHz band, meaning Dynamic Frequency Selection is definitely a major consideration. These wider channels create more opportunity for interference. But if you opt to not use DFS-enabled channels for wireless networking, your 802.11ac tech from CTS Cabling can only access a limited number of channels.

If you are struggling with WLAN hardware or WLAN deployment, wireless networks, or setting up 802.11ac, CTS Cabling can help. Getting expert and professional advice is one way to cut through all of the confusion of Dynamic Frequency Selection, ensuring that all of your networks and devices work the way you have intended.

Do not get yourself caught in a big problem that is hard to immediately fix – get help from the professionals and you will no longer have to worry about interference and how it can affect your home or business network!

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