The Case for a Multi-hop Wireless Local Area Network

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2003-12-18

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We propose a multi-hop wireless LAN architecture and demonstrate its benefits to wireless clients. For this architecture, we define implementation paths that allow interoperation with existing wireless LANs and therefore lead to an incremental deployment of this system. We quantify the performance benefits of the proposed schemes through measurements in realistic wireless LAN environments. We also examine the performance of such multi-hop wireless LANs through detailed simulation studies. Our results show that such multi-hop extensions can significantly improve the wireless access experience (in terms of data throughput, latency, etc.) for clients who enable such mechanisms. More interestingly, when multi-hop extensions are enabled by some of the clients, it also positively impacts the performance at other clients that are completely unaware of such extensions. UMIACS-TR-2003-73

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