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To improve the capacity of wireless ad hoc networks by exploiting multiple available channels, we propose a combined proactive routing and multi-channel medium access control (MAC) protocol. The multi-channel MAC protocol is compatible with IEEE 802.11 MAC and imposes the minimum system requirement among existing multi-channel MAC protocols. Because a proactive routing protocol allows each node to have complete topology information of the network, channel assignment can be closely coupled with a proactive routing protocol. The proposed channel assignment protocol is shown to require fewer channels and exhibit significantly lower communication, computation, and storage complexity than existing channel assignment schemes. We prove the correctness of the proposed channel assignment protocol. In addition, through a performance study, we show that the proposed protocol, by effectively increasing capacity, substantially increases throughput and decreases delay compared to the IEEE 802.11 MAC protocol.