Consignment Software / Dual-Band Routers
Why Are POS Stations Slow?
Cheaper routers designed for home use have only 3 non-overlapping channels for transmission and they only transmit at a slower 2.4GHz (gigahertz) speed, making them unacceptable for commercial use.
Unfortunately, because of their lower price, cheap routers are commonplace in the work environment, making data delivery and software performance unsatisfactorily slow.
'Latency' is the time interval between stimulation and response and will be (much) longer on a wireless network. If wireless is in use, connect the PCs to the router with cat6 cables and note the reduction in latency.
Speed on POS stations will also be determined by the resources of each computer. If the PC is slow on its own, it will be slower on a network.
Look on the back of the router for specs, or search online using the make/model #. The common Cisco Linksys WRT120-N is a 2.4GHz single-band router.
The limitations of a 2.4GHz router are that there are only 3 channels and they are on the same wavelength as other Wi-Fi access points, Bluetooth devices, cordless phones, microwave ovens, baby monitors - all of which make for a very crowded and noisy transmission environment. Interference is at its greatest and performance is degraded. Connections are lost/dropped and data can be corrupted.
A dual-band router can transmit on 2.4GHz and 5 GHz. The latter has 23 non-overlapping channels (eight times more) so channels are much cleaner with significantly less signal interference. It has twice the bandwidth so data flow in much faster.
Working with BCSS
When POS stations are unacceptably slow, a way to determine that the router is the bottleneck is to:
The reason for the increase in speed is that the POS station is drawing data from its hard drive which is much faster than pulling data from the host computer through the router.
Still slow? How much processing power does the POS computer have? (To the right of the Start Button type 'system information' and Enter.)
The computer should have at least a 2.7GHz processor and 8GB of RAM. If not, the computer is the next bottleneck on the network.
A third cause of slowness (on or off a network) is the accumulation of historical records and transactions.
In consignment and resale, turnover and payouts are quick so there's no useful purpose in maintaining records more than 1-2 years old. Tech support can remove old records (prior to a date provided by the shop owner) which will reduce the number of records the program has to look through for each task. (Send an email to support to for pricing and arrangements.)