Optimize your Wi-Fi network with NetSpot

Test and optimize your Wi-Fi network using your MacBook and NetSpot, a free networking application for Mac.

While it's easy to understand the benefits of using a Wi-Fi network, it's not always a simple process to get one set up correctly. NetSpot is a tool that aims to help you map and understand your existing network or plan and set up a new network.

The program's professional, easy-to-follow user interface guides you through the survey process. By using sample maps or hand-drawn maps, NetSpot users get visual feedback of their network's signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), with a simple color map. Red is used for the best SNR, and blue for worst. As the publisher notes, you'll need to physically walk around your networking area and click on the corresponding location on the map for the software to perform a passive scan of the available networks. The final result is a heat map of your network with helpful onscreen explanations.

The free app has proven to be very useful: we were able to test our home network in just a few minutes and spot the dead points immediately. Even if you're not the resident network expert, NetSpot is a tool that nearly any moderately savvy user can use to analyze his or her Wi-Fi network.

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