Try out the new inSSIDer3 Preview Release.

Many of you may not know the history of inSSIDer and how it came to be created. Work on inSSIDer began back in 2007 when MetaGeek was still a tiny company of four people, and we had just created Wi-Spy 2.4x.

Netstumbler was still the most popular Wi-Fi scanner, but the developer hadn’t worked on it since 2005, so it had issues on 64-bit Windows XP and on Windows Vista. At that time Chanalyzer only showed spectrum data, no Wi-Fi information at all, which meant you had to use a separate tool to get a list of Wi-Fi networks while troubleshooting with Wi-Spy, and with Netstumbler development stopped, this was starting to become a problem for our customers.

We decided to build Wi-Fi scanning into our Chanalyzer software, so that it would show RF spectrum data from Wi-Spy *and* list all of the nearby Wi-Fi networks. Being a tiny company with a very limited marketing budget, we decided that creating a free Wi-Fi scanner to replace Netstumbler would get us more awareness than any advertising would. We built inSSIDer at the same time that we were building Wi-Fi scanning into Chanalyzer and released inSSIDer 1.0 in January 2008 (Chanalyzer didn’t get Wi-Fi scanning for another six months).

inSSIDer started getting noticed by places like Tekzilla and Network World and after 14 months it reached 100,000 downloads! Since then it has steadily gained popularity and has now been downloaded 8 million times and has almost 40,000 users every day!

The original inSSIDer design was influenced by Netstumbler, which was mainly used for wardriving. The Channels View was introduced in inSSIDer 1.1 and was heavily influenced by our Chanalyzer application. Since then some colors have changed and we’ve added GPS logging, but the overall design of inSSIDer hasn’t changed very much.

Inssider 1.0

Today about 90% of users use inSSIDer to help improve their personal home Wi-Fi. Over 80% of users identify their Wi-Fi skill level as beginner or intermediate, yet over 30% say Wi-Fi is critical and troubleshoot Wi-Fi at least monthly. Given these statistics we decided it was time to rethink inSSIDer and design it from the ground up with the goal of helping users improve their Wi-Fi quickly and easily, while providing education on Wi-Fi best practices.

Upon launching inSSIDer 3, the first thing you’ll notice is that “Customize inSSIDer” options allowing you to specify your expertise level and your location type (home, office, school). The “Learn” screen has also been streamlined to show more relevant information based on the user customizations.

The Networks Tab contains the standard Networks Table and Channels Views, and also adds a Network Details panel to the right of the table. The Network Details panel shows extra information about the selected network in the table, allowing the table to be simpler. This also provides a place to add additional information, such as showing the MCS Index for 802.11n networks (coming in a future release).

The Channels Views below the table looks similar to the Channels View in inSSIDer 2. All networks are displayed the same, regardless of which network(s) you are interested in.

In inSSIDer 3 you can now identify your network in the Network Details panel by starring it. Once a network has been starred, the colors of all the networks in the Channels View changes to highlight your network, networks on the same channel as your network, and networks that overlap your network. This provides a quick snapshot of the networks that could be conflicting with your network. Clicking the small clipboard icon in the top right corner of each panel will copy the table or image to the clipboard; this makes it easier to create a report if you are using inSSIDer for work.

 


In the Works…

Upcoming releases will include channel recommendations and security warnings, customized for each users skill level and environment.

 

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  • http://www.promtec.com.br Promtec

    It seems we have good improvements, I’m downloading v3.

  • Alexander007

    On Windows 7 x64 at setup directory selection it says “Installation directory must be on a local drive”, while I am definitely choosing my local system drive

    • http://wendyfox.com/ Wendy Fox

      we’ll check this out tomorrow with our support team.  we’ve been away from the office for the holiday.

      • Joel Crane

        Hey Alexander007, if you shoot me an email at support@metageek.net , we can look into it to see what is going on. Thanks!

        • Bill Winters

          I have the exact same problem. Was this ever fixed?

          • Marta

            same here! help!

          • whatever

            I think the problem is still there…after 1 year+?

          • Trent Cutler

            I suspect it was not if you are still having issues. We are releasing an update in a few weeks. I’ll make sure this issue was released.

      • Sean C

         Any update?  Same problem here with Win8 x64

  • anonymous

    It would be real nice if the Time Graph could log everything from the start of the scan not just the last 5 minutes (scrollbar) also maybe provide an export feature of the Time Graph scan to csv with the fields in the graph (dBm, time).This would serve in the case when you’re not moving the antenna and watching the graph at the same time but rather do a slow 180 degree sweep, so you would just move the antenna to one position, log the time (start and end) for the current degree and repeat. Then you go back to inSSIDer, search for the highest signal in the time graph, take note of the time when it was registered and reposition the antenna to the degree with the corresponding time interval.

    • Trent Cutler

      Thank you for the feedback!

  • Anonymous

    Do you plan any Linux versions? 

  • wmann

    Hope for advanced users you will also show hidden ssids, detailed security infos as in older versions. All available data rates would be usefull. I think also the possibility to modify and extend the vendor table would be nice. I hope also you will integrate the nice filter functions which were included in inSSIDer 2.1. You’re doing a great job!

    Best Regards
    wmann

    • Trent Cutler

      Would the min and max data rates be sufficient? What do you typically use the data rate column to do? Do you have my email? send me a message or reply here. Thanks!

  • Andreas Johannson

     Just checked out the preview of inSSIDer 3.0, I end up with mixed feelings.
    One feature I like very much is the “copy to clipboard”, thanks!
    But I would like to disable/hide the 5 GHz graph, because having a device not capable of it, I don’t need it. The feature of moving the bar between 2.4 and 5 GHz is nice but still 1/4 of the bottom half of the screen is filled.
    The removal of the filters and the all-networks-in-one time graph is sad, I checked out my network with different Access Points/Repeaters so I usually set a filter on the SSID and had a look on the graph.
    And last the colours! Having a red/green colour vision deficiency (which concern up to 10 % of the male population) I would like to choose different colours or colour schemes (mostly red on black is awful!).

    Still I like the way you made v3 into a similar design like the android app, maybe take the single panes for APs, Channel Graphs etc. into consideration for the desktop? Putting all information on one screen seems to be a bit too much.

    Keep up the good work and thanks for the software!

    • Trent Cutler

      These are some very good suggestions in here. Thank you for the feedback.

  • Andreas Johannson

    Just checked out the preview of inSSIDer 3.0, I end up with mixed feelings.
    One feature I like very much is the “copy to clipboard”, thanks!
    But I would like to disable/hide the 5 GHz graph, because having a device not capable of it, I don’t need it. The feature of moving the bar between 2.4 and 5 GHz is nice but still 1/4 of the bottom half of the screen is filled.
    The removal of the filters and the all-networks-in-one time graph is sad, I checked out my network with different Access Points/Repeaters so I usually set a filter on the SSID and had a look on the graph.
    And last the colours! Having a red/green colour vision deficiency (which concern up to 10 % of the male population) I would like to choose different colours or colour schemes (mostly red on black is awful!).

    Still I like the way you made v3 into a similar design like the android app, maybe take the single panes for APs, Channel Graphs etc. into consideration for the desktop? Putting all information on one screen seems to be a bit too much.

    Keep up the good work and thanks for the software!

  • Cstrabley

    Showing the IP of the WAP would be helpful in a corp environment that has many units broadcasting the same SSID.

    • Trent Cutler

      The IP address would only be available to the APs in your network, but I still think there is enough value in that to implement it into some of our software. I can’t make any promises though :)

  • Unknown

    I think , u need to check OUI.TXT file at  http://standards.ieee.org/develop/regauth/oui/oui.txt.
    I list vendor as “blank”,
    but it is ..BC-14-01   (hex) Hitron Technologies. Inc             BC1401     (base 16) Hitron Technologies. Inc No. 1-8, Lising 1st Rd. Hsinchu Science Park, Hsinchu,  Hsin-chu   TAIWAN, PROVINCE OF CHINA I think u need to load this table at startup, to get latest list.

    • Trent Cutler

      The OUI may be out of date. We’ll try to update it each time we release but we can never guarantee the accuracy of a database we didn’t create ourselves. Thanks for pointing that out.

  • CAB

    I hope you are planning an OSX version as well.

  • non-committal

    Awesome, I like it.  The only thing I’d like to see is the ability to add/remove clolumns and more options there-e.g. max data rate showing the AP’s published data rates and if they are mandatory etc. (like in version 2).

    • Trent Cutler

      The show hide columns will be coming in the next update and it will have max data rates.

  • WishingXP-support

    I wish it would work in WinXP, so I couldn’t even try it. Some of us still hate Vista and Windows 7. Win 8 isn’t compatible with my current computer

  • Oscar

    Just installed inSSIDer 3 on a eePc with 1024 x 600 (resolution suggested by ASUS) it is impossible to acced to programs functionatilty.
    Version before worked fine.
    What suggestion ?
    Thanks

  • byebye

    Useless with resolution of 1024×600 :(

  • omg

    I’m using WIn 7 64-bit and i keep on getting the message “Installation directory must be on a local hard drive” no matter what directory i select.. Whats going on? I know other ppl here are having the same issue as well.. Has it been fixed?