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MICPA: a client-assisted channel assignment scheme for throughput enhancement in WLANs

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The emergence of high-density wireless local area network (WLAN) deployments in recent years is a testament to the insatiable demands for wireless broadband services. The increased density of WLAN deployments brings with it the potential of increased capacity, extended coverage, and exciting new applications. However, the corresponding increase in contention and interference can significantly degrade throughputs, unless new challenges in channel assignment are effectively addressed. In this paper, a client-assisted channel assignment scheme that can provide enhanced throughput is proposed. A study on the impact of interference on throughput with multiple access points (APs)is first undertaken using a novel approach that determines the possibility of parallel transmissions. A metric with a good correlation to the throughput, i.e., the number of conflict pairs, is used in the client-assisted minimum conflict pairs (MICPA) scheme. In this scheme, measurements from clients are used to assist the AP in determining the channel with the minimum number of conflict pairs to maximize its expected throughput. Simulation results show that the client-assisted MICPA scheme can provide meaningful throughput improvements over other schemes that only utilize the AP’s measurements.

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