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Wireless Glossary (common terms)

Access Control List (ACL)

  • a list of MAC addresses for either Black or White listing.

Access Point (AP)

  • hardware device providing connection for a client device to the network over wireless.

Auto Channel

  • intelligent channel selection based on neighboring APs to avoid wireless interference.

Auto Power

  • intelligent power management based on neighboring APs to avoid wireless interference.

Band Steering

  • prioritize the 5GHz radio over 2.4 GHz for client device connections.


  • data that is being sent out to the entire network.


  • specific frequency at which a radio runs.

Channel Width

  • frequency range or span that directly affects connectivity speed of a radio. also referred to as channel HT/VHT (high throughput/very high throughput).


  • a device with the ability to connect to the network. also referred to as wired/wireless client.

dBi (decibel isotropic)

  • unit of measurement to define the antenna’s power gain.

dBm (decibel-milliwatt)

  • unit of measurement to define the transmit power of an access point.


  • an access point with two radios, 2.4GHz and 5GHz.


  • process of encoding wireless data to further secure a network.

Fast Roaming

  • allow a client to seamlessly transit from one AP to another without disruptions on applications.

L2 Isolation

  • prevents wireless clients from being able to communicate with any other client (including wired clients) on the network.

LOS (line-of-sight)

  • a straight line between two devices, free of obstructions.

MAC Address

  • unique identifier for every network interface.

Managed Mode

  • a device that is operating under a controller or management system.


  • data that is being sent out to multiple destinations.

RSSI (received signal strength indication)

  • measurement of radio power on the receiver.

RSSI threshold

  • minimum signal level tolerance setting to allow clients to switch over to other APs or radios with stronger coverage.

SSID (service set identifier)

  • name of a Wi-Fi network.

TX power (transmit power)

  • power level of an access point or radio which is proportional to its coverage.

Wireless Mesh

  • interconnection of access points to form a distributed network through Wi-Fi architecture.