Jake: Thanks to Dennis Rex again for sending me WLANexpert to host, and doing this great write up!
WLAN Expert is a wireless client utility designed to work with the PRISM chipset by Intersil. The Linksys WPC11 is the only client card I’ve tested, although many manufacturers use this silicon. Intersil counts Alcatel, Cisco, Compaq, Nokia, Nortel, Samsung and Siemens among its OEMs.
The main screen offers signal strength, errors, interference (all in dBm) as well as channel, SSID and speed indicators:
You are also given the option to attenuate the transmit power of the client via the Tx Power tab. Usage? Testing, improving security, reducing interference. Attenuation is in 10mW increments (decrements?). Default setting is full power.
There is also an antenna test, measuring the standing wave ratio of the antenna, 1.0 VSWR is perfect. Higher is poorer. Nice feature if you’re rolling your own. The values change as the distance from the base unit changes, so I’m not sure of the accuracy. Output is graphed and the antenna rated nice, good, poor.
Additional detail can be view on the Information screen.
You can scan the available channels for a graph of the signal strength, again in dBm. Good for finding the sweet spot in your location.