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Common Wireless LAN (WLAN) pathologies include low signal-to-noise ratio, congestion, hidden terminals or interference from non-802.11 devices and phenomena. Prior work has focused on the detection and diagnosis of such problems using layer-2 information from 802.11 devices and special-purpose access points and monitors, which may not be generally available. Here, the authors investigate a user-level approach: is it possible to detect and diagnose 802.11 pathologies with strictly user-level active probing, without any cooperation from, and without any visibility in, layer-2 devices' In this paper, they present preliminary but promising results indicating that such diagnostics are feasible.
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