5 best Wi-Fi channel scanners [Windows 10, Mac]

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Former Managing Editor
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  • Monitoring your Wi-Fi's traffic, speed, and signal strength is easy to do with the right tool.
  • In the guide below we will explore the best Wi-Fi scanners that you can get today.
  • If you want to read more related articles make sure to check out our amazing Network page.
  • You can read more recommendations for software in our dedicated Software section.
the best Wi-Fi scanners for Windows 10

Wi-Fi scanners are informative software that elevates the security level of your wireless connection.

This kind of software provides information about Wi-Fi problems, the best channel for your router, the best place for installing the router by turning your PC or your laptop into an analyzer for the wireless network.

Most of them have features like: showing all the networks that may interfere with your connection, checking your Wi-Fi connection speed and health, refining found network results with filters and many more.

Also, in the current market are plenty of such programs but not up to the standards of an ordinary user or they may even create a breach in the security system of your connection.

To avoid the disappointment of searching for a program of this kind, we have prepared for you a list of the best Wi-Fi scanners available nowadays.

What are the best Wi-Fi scanning tools for Windows 10?

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Paessler PRTG

This tool is developed by one of the biggest network security company in the world. It will let you maintain an overview of all your devices that are connected to a wireless network.

It will help you check the speed, load, traffic, status, signal strength of your routers. Basically, it is your best friend when you need to check what’s happening on your Wi-Fi pipes.

First, of all, PRTG will allow you to see when your routers are not available so you could fix this and re-establish the Wi-Fi connection.

This is a crucial factor for a network with multiple devices connected for sync or sharing purposes, even if it is only your home network and the connected devices are your laptop/PC, tablet, and phone.

You will also be able to see when your network is too loaded so you could avoid disruptions. Just keep an eye on the bandwidth markers from PRTG and see what device and what app is consuming most of your connection.

One of the most needed features is to see where the Wi-Fi connection is lacking strength.

If a router has some problems with its emitters, then you will be able to see it on the software’s dashboard and you will be good to change/fix that router or any other problematic element of your network.

Another crucial feature is seeing the last access to a device. It is really useful to monitor what device from the network accessed the Wi-Fi during the night or when normally there shouldn’t be any access.

This will help you remove the unneeded devices that are consuming the internet and bandwidth.

You can try this program for 30 days and you can go on the free (but limited) version after that or you can continue by upgrading to a pro plan.

PRTG Network Monitor

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Wi-Fi Analyzer

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This application is developed by Matt Hafner and has an average of 4.3 out of 5 stars obtained from the feedback of more than 800 people.

The first thing that you have to do when you open this software is to set your location. Wi-Fi Analyzer will show you a pop-up where it will ask you for that. It has 3 different tabs for 3 different actions: Connected, Analyze, and Networks.

The Connected page is providing you information about the current Wi-Fi connection.

On the top area, you will find a graphic of the connection quality based on link speed and signal level in negative dBm and also different icons that indicate bad link speed, bad channel, bad connection, the absence of internet connection, and unsecured connections.

The bad part of this aspect is that the icons do not have any description so in the first phase you can get a bit confused, but you will understand what represents each one soon enough.

On the bottom menu, you have a button to toggle between the State and Link Speed indicator.

The Link Speed shows the current and the top speed on the current session and the State mode shows only the improvement percentage. If this percentage is 100% it means that your connection quality was not affected.

The Analyze page is the place where you can make changes for a better connection.

You can access the graphics and the channel ratings, you can switch between channels and also toggle between the frequency bands.

To better understand the evolution of your connection you have full access to customize the colors of the graphics and the SSID/MAC.

You can also filter the SSIDs shown in the graphics by the minimal signal bars, frequency band, overlapping, Wi-Fi method, and network type.

On the Network menu, you will have a list of all available SSIDs. On the bottom zone, you have a menu where you can filter the available connections by their name and signal.

Most of the filters applied on the Analyze page are available on the Network page. The main function of this page is the connection to one of the available networks.

This software has different features like enabling an adapter, preventing the screen to turn off, and enabling vendor detection of access points. The only disadvantage of this program is the high number of ads.

Download Wi-Fi Analyzer

Wi-Fi Commander: 3D Analyze & Monitor

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Wi-Fi Commander software has achieved an average of 4.6 points out of a total of 5 from 490 feedbacks.

The interface is very easy to use for any category of users because the facilities are divided into 4 categories: Networks, Monitor, Analyze 3D, and Settings.

The Network tab contains the list with all available connections and their details. To see all the details available for a certain connection all you have to do is click on that connection and it will open a pop-up where you will find everything you need to know about it, such as BSSID, beacon interval, and time discovered.

From the same pop-up, you can connect or disconnect from the SSID.

The network tab also has a system that scans the quality of the connection. This provides details of the last scan.

It is useful only when you want to find out some details about the connection quality, but if you want to watch its progress in real-time, the Monitor and Analyze 3D page will display details about the connection quality regularly.

On the upper area of this tab, you will find details such as the time of the last scan and the total number of access points. From that menu, you can also customize the information displayed.

The Monitor tab is devoted exclusively to the study of the connection. On that page, you find different graphics that will show the evolution of connection in real-time since you connected.

This tab has different filters that will help you customize the details displayed and switch between the 2.4 and the 5 GHz bands.

On the Analyze 3D tab you can find a 3D type of channel usage graphs for both 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz on the same page.

This tab also has customizable filters for details and specifications. Graphs can be viewed in a classical or modern style in order to reduce the difficulty of reading them.

From the Settings tab, you can change the visual theme for the GUI and select the Wi-Fi adapter.

Download Wi-Fi Commander: 3D Analyze & Monitor

WiFi Monitor

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Wi-Fi Monitor is a software published by the developer of the VoiceWake and GrooveGrid, Mark Rizzo. It has an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 from more than 100 feedbacks.

This program is structured into 5 tabs to streamline its work: Dashboard, Graph, List, Speed test, and Ratings. All pages have come accompanied by suggestive names and icons to be used even by the most inexperienced users.

The Dashboard tab is more like the main menu where it displays details about the current network, such as network name, signal strength, frequency, encryption, uptime, beacon interval, and many more.

By default, the software takes you to the Graph tab where you can see a graphic with the signal of each network.

In the bottom area, you have a button for changing between the 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz bands and adjust the bar threshold to fade out low signals.

On the List tab, you will find a list with all the available networks and a few details about them. If you click on the network you can view the detected access point vendor and you can connect to them through the application.

From the Speed Test tab, you can run a measuring network speed process. In this way, you can see the speed of download and upload files at any moment to make sure that the connection problems are not due to your system.

In the Rating tab, you can find the ratings for every channel on the frequency band that you are currently connected to. The software will recommend you the best connection available in this tab.

Download Wi-Fi Monitor

WiFi Tool

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Wi-Fi Tool is published by the developer of the Network Data and HD-POS applications, Helge Magnus Keck, and has the highest rating from all the programs presented so far.

He managed to get an average of 4.7 out of 5 from almost 300 feedbacks. The interface is structured in 4 tabs (WLAN, Analyze, Traffic, and Settings) that can be found on the left side of the dialog box.

The WLAN tab will display a list with all the available SSIDs with the corresponding details. When you are connected to a network, the SSID will be displayed on the top of the dialog box.

In the same area, you will find shortcuts and filters to customize the information displayed and also a disconnect button to end the connection any time you want.

When you click on any SSID from the available networks it will open a new menu on the left side of your dialog box where you will find all the information you need to be structured in graphics and tables.

All you have to do to connect to one of the available networks is to right-click on the desired network and then you can connect through the application.

On the Analyze page, you can find different graphics that show the evolution of your connection which can be flipped between 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz.

The first graphic is the channel usage but you can also change it to a line graph which will show you the signal power over time.

You have a set of filters at the bottom of the dialog box to adjust and customize the information displayed. More than that, you can choose a 3D presentation for each graphic.

On the upper area of the dialog box, you can find a shortcut to a feature that activates the split view mode where you can view two kinds of graphics at the same time.

Furthermore, in that area you will find a shortcut to a list of networks, so you do not have to switch to the WLAN tab and you can combine this feature with the split view to have 2 graphics and a network list on the same screen.

The Traffic tab is dedicated to the data usage area. This feature is measuring the number of uploads and downloads from every session as a bar graph.

From the main graphic menu, you can select the time period you want to be analyzed. This attribute is available even for networks to which you previously connected.

The Settings tab has a big number of customizable features such as changing the theme, the language, and the region. From this section, you can modify the live tile that will be shown only if you pin the application to the Start Bar.

In the live tile, you can select 2 fields to be displayed. Furthermore, you can customize the Wi-Fi Tool to send a notification every time when you connect or disconnect from a wireless network.

Download Wi-Fi Tool

In this article, we presented the best Wi-Fi scanners that will make life easier for you.

They will help you with monitoring your traffic, upload speed, and the strength of your router’s signal among other amazing features we already detailed above.

Check them all out, and if you have any additional suggestions or questions, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2016 and has been since revamped and updated in August 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published in October 2016 and was revamped and updated in December 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.