Channel utilization – Not important for EMC-Netsight?

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Looking for software for monitoring our university wireless network based on Extreme Network  wireless controller V2110 and mostly APs 3805i,  I am testing EMC Netsight 8.0.3.53. Entering the menu Wireless/Access Points I get a nice table of all APs with IP and MAC Address, Channels, Peak Wired and Wireless Bandwidth and Peak Clients. But where are the statistics for Channel Utilization?  For me as a network administrator Channel Utilization is an important metric to evaluate the health of my wireless network. I was told that in order to get data about Channel Utilization one has to get the most advanced (and expensive) version of EMC, NMS-ADV-XX . Really? 

Inside of NMS-ADV-XX you can create custom reports about channel utilization but have to do it for each radio of each AP. If your network has 500 APs with two radios, you have to create 1000 components, which can then be combined in the Report Designer to a custom report. There is no way (at least I couldn’t find one) to have a simple table of all APs and their actual Channel Utilization or a list of APs with the highest Channel Utilization.

So, why is Channel Utilization not important for EMC Netsight? Why do they have to hide this feature in the NMS-ADV-XX version? Why can’t I have a list of all APs with wired/wireless bandwidth and Channel utilization at the same time without creating a complicate custom report? I am also testing LibreNMS, a wonderful open source network monitoring solution. Entering the wireless menu, I can choose the display of APs, Clients, Utilization, SNR, RSSI, Noise Floor, Errors and Frequency. So, if LibreNMS can do this, why not EMC Netsight?  
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Thomas Hucke

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Posted 4 months ago

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Bastian Sprotte, Employee

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Hello Thomas,
you might get the data you are looking for with the FlexView "Wireless Radios"
Device-View / Right Click on the controller, View/FlexView and choose the "Wireless Radios"
On the FlexView you can manage the Columns which should be displayed as you click on the little triangle on the heading and you can add more or less infos to your report.
Does this Data help you.
regards
Bastian
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Thomas Hucke

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Hi Bastion,
Thanks for the hint. The table which  Flexview of  "Wireless Radio" produces  shows information about channel information but I don't know how to relate it to an specific AP. The column "IP Address" has always the IP address of the controller and there are no columns which identifies the AP or radio of this particular channel utilization value. What do I missing here?
Regards,
Thomas.
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Bastian Sprotte, Employee

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Hi Thomas,
you are correct, the flexview needs to be reviewed and needs to have the AP NAME added.
In case you want to know which line is what, the report you have now has an columns called "instance" the instance is the ifIndex, just open an new flexview and click on
Controller-IP> Device/R-click/View->Interfaces.
Now the Interface ID is the reverence to the "instance".
again we can change the flexview for sure, but as workaround you can see the AP-Radius via the IfIndex.
regards
Bastian
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Thomas Hucke

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Hi Bastion,
I got it. I think, that for an admin, who wants to have a quick overview about the health of his wireless network - and I consider Channel Utilization as an very important metric for this purpose - EMC is pretty cumbersome and should be improved. IMHO software should help the life of an admin and not make it more complicate. 
BTW, what exactly does "Speed" of the wireless interface exactly mean?  Our 802.11a/n/ac radios show a speed of 54 Mbps and 802.11g/n only 11 Mps.

Regards,
Thomas.
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Ronald Dvorak, Embassador

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You'd ignore the Speed for the AP interface because every connected client will get a different connection rate which depend on many factors like signal strenght, SNR, client adapter, range.....
I assume that 54/11 is just a general value - in that case the max. speed of the lowest 802.11 radio standard of the 2.4 and 5 GHz radio.
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Thomas Hucke

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Ronald, 
I appreciate your response.
Thanks.

Thomas.
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Ronald Dvorak, Embassador

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I'd prefer a full integration of the channel util counters because the main reason to use XMC instead of the controller GUI for reports is the ability to look into the stored historical data in XMC.
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Thomas Hucke

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Exactly, and I don't see any need to purchase the most expensive version of XMC (NMS-ADV) just to get historical information about channel utilization. LibreNMS provides historical data about channel just using SNMP, and for free.
Regards,