Display And Monitor Info On Nearby Wireless Networks

WifiInfoView is a simple free utility that scans for nearby wireless networks and displays extensive information about them. It’s another quality free program from popular developer Nir Sofer and, as usual, it is portable and stable.

WifiInfoView works on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Server 2008. XP is not supported – XP users can use WirelessNetView which I have reviewed before.

The program is tiny and doesn’t need to be installed – in order to start using it, simply download and run. For every wireless network that is found, the main information displayed is:

– Network Name (SSID)
– MAC address
– PHY Type (wireless G or N)
– RSSI – signal strength (Received Signal Strength Indication)
– Signal Quality
– Frequency
– Channel number
– Maximum speed
– Company name
– Router model (where available)
– Router name (where available)

To Use WifiInfoView – download the program from Nirsoft at the bottom of the page here – it’s a portable program within a zip file format.

  • Unzip (extract) the zip file and run the WifiInfoView.exe file to open the program.
  • The program automatically scans for nearby wireless networks and displays a list of them as shown below:

wifiinfoview

Anyone used to NirSoft utilities will be familiar with the layout and find their way around easily. As is common, you can select one or more entries in the list and copy/paste them or export them into a txt/csv/tab-delimited/html/xml file by using the File \ Save Selected Items menu bar option (Ctrl+S hotkey) or by selecting the floppy disk icon.

Tips On Interpreting Data

RSSI – this is signal strength measured in decibels as a negative value. The closer to zero, the better the signal. E.g. a value of -40 is very good (equivalent to 5 ‘bars’ in Windows wifi strength indicator) whereas a value of -86 is very poor (equivalent to 1 bar or less in Windows).

Signal Quality – related to, but not the same as, RSSI. Measured as a value between 0 and 100 – the higher the value, the better the quality.

Column width – to reduce the scrolling required, you can adjust the column widths by dragging the column dividers to make them smaller.

Options – Select Options from the menubar if you wish to change any of the following:

Update Rate – WifiInfoView updates the list of wireless networks automatically – this option lets you change the update rate from very high through to low.

Summary Mode – There are 4 summary modes to choose from – these show a summary of the wireless networks grouped by Channel, Company, PHY type or Max speed. In Summary mode, WifiInfoView only displays the number of networks and the average/minimum/maximum of the signal quality for the summary group.

Conclusion

WifiInfoView is a quick and portable way to display and monitor (or save/print) the most important information about nearby wireless networks.