Cisco has developed an extensive portfolio of wireless LAN devices and software tools intended to provide anywhere, anytime access to data and resources and to promote collaboration among employees, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless offerings include Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki series of wireless access points, plus Cisco's Wireless LAN Controller plug-ins and appliances. Progent's Cisco-certified wireless consulting experts can enable organizations of any size to utilize Cisco wireless technology to accommodate the new paradigm of Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) networks by converging their wired and wireless environments to benefit from easy deployment, consistent and fast performance, single-point management, uniform policy, fault tolerance, and advanced security.
Cisco Security Architecture for BYOD and Wired/Wireless Access
The Cisco Unified Wireless Network solution can expand to as many as 18,000 wireless access points with Layer 3 mobility at central or offsite locations like enterprise headquarters, college auditoriums, branches, and telecommuter homes. Cisco's Wi-Fi APs and wireless controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are designed to support the same level of protection, throughput, and manageability for wireless networks that companies demand in their wired infrastructure. Cisco's architecture incorporates built-in mobile services like IP voice, high-definition IP video, and secure guest connectivity. Cisco's Unified Wireless technology allows companies to create Wi-Fi environments that streamline the way they do business and enhance productivity through a dynamic and connected workforce.
Progent's Cisco-certified network infrastructure consulting services offers online or on-premises expertise to help you to plan, configure, manage, expand, and troubleshoot converged wired/wireless networks of any size and for any environment. In addition, Progent can provide economical remote and onsite wireless site surveys to help you to plan and install a wireless network with customized wireless access point clustering optimized for your individual work area layout, building characteristics, and intended application.
Small Business, Aironet and Meraki Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki families of access points allow businesses to integrate wired and wireless infrastructure to deliver the coverage, capacity, throughput, security and manageability needed for practically any environment. These wireless access points start at bare bones, single-radio 802.11b/g/n devices with throughput of 300 Mbps for small businesses or telecommuters to dual-radio 802.11ac wireless access points capable of handling 200 or more wireless clients per AP and offering throughput of up to 1.9 Gigabits per second. Cisco's latest selection of access points can be clustered to deliver the scale to handle environments with high client density and with high usage rates of video-intense application software.
Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Family of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business Family of access points are Linux-powered devices designed as entry-level 802.11n Wi-Fi solutions for light workloads. Most versions in Cisco's Small Business family of APs support Cisco's Single Point Setup system, which allows you to set up, control and repair a group of wireless access points from one AP via a simple browser-based interface. All of the models support POE and provide QoS, rogue access point detection, and bridging for connecting to a second network.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 Access Point is a wall-mountable, single-radio 2.4GHz device that can handle 16 802.11b/g/n clients, has a 10/100 Ethernet port, allows up to four access pointss and 40 active clients in a cluster, and can handle throughput of up to 300 Mbps. The Cisco Small Business WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n AP able to handle 16 wireless clients on each radio for a total of up to 32 clients, features a Gigabit Ethernet interface, and delivers throughput of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not allow clustering. Cisco's Small Business WAP150 is a value-priced Wave 1 dual-radio AC/n AP that features a one Gbit Power over Ethernet (PoE) port and can handle 16 clients from each radio with 867 Mbps performance for AC clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco Small Business WAP150 allows four APs per cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP321 Wireless-N model is a wallmount single-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11n device with support for 80 active wireless clients sharing an 8-device cluster. The Cisco WAP321 has a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port and can support throughput of 300 Mbps for the selected radio. The Cisco Small Business WAP351 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11n access point that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can support 32 wireless clients on each radio for a total of up to 64 clients, and support throughput of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP351 does not allow clustering. The Cisco Small Business WAP361 is a dual-radio Wireless-AC/N wireless access point that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch, can support 32 active WLAN clients on each radio, and delivers 867 Mbps throughput for 802.11ac devices and 300 Mbps performance for 802.11n devices. The Cisco Small Business WAP361 supports 8 WAP361 access points for each cluster. Cisco's wallmount WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-band AP that supports 802.11a/b/g/n and the latest 802.11ac Wi-Fi specification. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port, can support up to 32 active wireless clients per radio, and eight access points for each cluster.
Cisco's WAP561 802.11n Selectable Band access point includes one Gigabit Ethernet interface and dual radios (2.4 and 5.0 GHz) that offer 450 Mbps throughput per radio, can handle 64 clients for each radio, and allow 16 access points for each cluster. Cisco's WAP551 is like Cisco's WAP 561 but has a single radio selectable band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). The Cisco Small Business WAP571 and WAP571E (the weather-proof outside model) are dual-band 802.11ac access points incorporating 2 x GE interfaces with link aggregation, 3x3 MIMO, and as high as 1.9 Gigabit/sec performance with 1300 Mbps over 11ac and 600 Mbps over 802.11n. Both devices can handle 32 active WAN clients on each radio and 16 WAP371 access points per cluster.
The Aironet Line of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Aironet family of indoor and outdoor wireless APs has consistently been the market leading AP solution. Aironet access points range from value-priced entry-level devices to enterprise-class units. Cisco's Aironet family span several generations of devices supporting the continually improving 11x standard. Cisco's current portfolio of Aironet APs support Cisco's Unified Wireless Network software and come with 802.11ac Wi-Fi support, which offers triple the performance as well as superior distance and density compared to the prior generation of devices. Cisco's current dual-band Aironet access points can accommodate 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for client devices without 802.11ac capability.
The oldest Aironet access points are legacy units that have come to end-of-life status and are no longer supported by Cisco. Progent still offers support for the complete Aironet family of wireless access points and can assist you to maintain your current Aironet wireless system or upgrade cost effectively to the latest Aironet technology. For details about Progent's consulting services for both current and legacy Cisco Aironet access points, see Aironet access points system design and troubleshooting.
Meraki Access Points
Cisco's portfolio of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor access points range from budget-friendly models for general use to advanced products that offer up to 2.5 Gigabit per second performance. Every Cisco Meraki indoor wireless access point provides next-generation features such as self-configuring installation, in-depth protection, BYOD support, built-in analytics, automatic web-based firmware updates, and centralized cloud-based management via an intuitive dashboard. Each Cisco Meraki indoor access point also includes dual high-power radios with boosted reception plus a dedicated radio that offers (WIDS/WIPS) security for threat detection and deep packet inspection at line rate.
Meraki outdoor APs are IP67 rated, built to withstand harsh outdoor environments, and able to withstand dust, shock and moisture. Cisco's Meraki outdoor access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and deliver advanced capabilities such as cloud-based management with network-wide control, 802.1X and native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan (NAC), 1-click secure guest access and isolation firewall, application-aware traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with beamforming. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for Meraki access points and management tools, see Cisco's Meraki APs system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco Wireless Network Controllers
Cisco wireless LAN controllers cut the effort and cost required to configure, manage, and operate Wi-Fi networks by offering single-point control of critical tasks like setting up wireless access points, enforcing single-point policies across converged wired and wireless networks, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service (QoS) for voice and video, tracking and troubleshooting system performance, implementing wireless intrusion prevention system (wIPS) tools to defend against cyber break-ins and DoS threats, and managing IPv6 and dual-stack clients. Cisco has designed wireless network controllers for organizations of all sizes and offers desktop or rackmount appliances, modular add-on wireless controllers for Cisco routers and Catalyst switches, and switches with integrated wireless LAN controllers.
The current versions of Cisco wireless controllers incorporate Cisco CleanAir tools to minimize RF interference and produce self-healing and self-optimizing wireless LANs for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Built-in Bonjour Gateways allow discovery throughout the enterprise for Apple-based applications. For high availability (HA), Cisco wireless network controllers support wireless access point and client stateful failover by enabling a backup high-availability controller to synchronize with a primary wireless controller for access point license tabulation, CAPWAP keys, and access point CAPWAP state. If the primary controller fails, thousands of access points and wireless clients can failover in less than a second to the backup wireless network controller.
Cisco's Wireless Controller Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac support for Cisco 2900 and 3900 Series routers used by smaller organizations and branches. This affordable and expandable solution can support up to 200 access points and as many as 6000 wireless clients. (To learn about Progent's online and onsite consulting and troubleshooting support services for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting consulting.)
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches intended for SMBs and satellite offices and come with an integrated wireless network controller with the capability to support 40 Gb of wireless capacity per switch and 25 access points and 1000 wireless clients per switch or stack. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches intended for midsize and large organizations and feature an integrated wireless network controller with 40 Gb of wireless capacity on each switch and support for up to 50 wireless access points and 2000 clients. The Wireless Services Module2 is an add-in blade for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches with an integrated wireless network controller intended for mid-to-large size enterprises and capable of 20 Gbps throughput and able to handle 1000 APs and as many as 15,000 wireless clients. (To find out about Progent's support for Cisco Catalyst switches, see Cisco switches deployment and management support.)
Cisco 2500 Wireless Controllers are economical desktop units that simplify the provisioning and operation of Wi-Fi networks for small and midsize businesses and branch offices. The 2500 Series wireless LAN controller can manage from five to 75 access points and up to 1000 wireless clients and can deliver sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU unit designed for mid-to-large sized businesses and campuses and can manage 500 APs and 7,000 clients while delivering 8 Gbps throughput. Cisco's 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance designed for mid-to-large campuses with support for 1000 wireless access points and 12,000 wireless clients and offering performance of 60 Gbps to handle high client densities and high amounts of video-intensive mobile applications.
The Cisco Flex 7500 Series Wireless Controller is designed to enable centralized management of massive collections of wireless branches from a single datacenter, avoiding the need for a wireless controller at each remote site. The 1RU Flex 7500 appliance lets you establish a private cloud to deploy, track, maintain, and troubleshoot as many as 6000 APs and 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps performance. The Cisco 8500 Wireless Controller is a 1RU rackmount device engineered to manage wireless networks for very large campuses or for service providers and can scale to support 6000 wireless points and 64,000 wireless clients while delivering 10 Gbps throughput.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Access Points, LAN Bridges and Wi-Fi Controllers Supported by Progent
The IEEE 802.11ac standard for wireless connectivity virtually made obsolete all prior releases of Wi-Fi products for venues that have high numbers of wireless clients and high usage of video-intensive applications. Even for organizations who do not need the bandwidth efficiency of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, a large number of Cisco wireless products have arrived at end-of-sale or end-of-support status, which can present significant service and regulatory compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consultants offer remote and onsite support services for a wide array of earlier-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can in addition help organizations to assess the potential ROI for upgrading legacy wireless infrastructure and can help in planning and executing cost-effective, seamless migrations. Below are a sample of Cisco legacy wireless devices that Progent's consultants continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Cisco Aironet 1000/1130AG family access points are ideal for offices and similar sites which have minimal environmental variability. These devices have built-in antennas that offer dependable omnidirectional range patterns. The Cisco Aironet 1130G Series WAP is designed for controlled domains that do not permit 802.11a transmission.
Aironet 1230AG or 1240AG family wireless access points are intended for more problematic radio frequency environments like manufacturing plants and warehouses or above ceiling structures which tend to call for adjustable external antennas and durable enclosures. The Cisco Aironet 1240G family wireless access point is intended for regulatory locations that do not allow 802.11a operation.
Cisco Aironet 1500 family lightweight outside mesh APs offer an economical, expandable, protected outdoor wireless mechanism for campus areas and for public venues that need connectivity for portable devices.
Legacy Cisco Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco wireless bridges offer a high-performance and multi-featured solution for integrating multiple local area networks in a metropolitan area or public wireless environment. Cisco wireless bridges offer a versatile, manageable technology that meets the protection needs of public networking professionals. These bridges manage both P2P and point-to-multipoint configurations with excellent coverage and support for data throughput as high as 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless LAN bridges deliver throughput dramatically higher than E1/T1 lines for far less cost, eliminating the need for expensive leased lines when connecting separate buildings. Because wireless bridges require no periodic costs, savings on leased-line services rapidly pay for the startup equipment investment. Private lines and in some cases leased lines made of metal or optical cable often require considerable up-front costs when they are impeded by barriers like freeways, train tracks, or lakes and rivers. Cisco Aironet wireless bridges can be deployed rapidly an offer a fast ROI.
Aironet 1300 outdoor access points/bridges can be deployed as independent wireless access points, bridges, or wireless group bridges. These devices have a ruggedized cover and offer fast, economical wireless interfaces between numerous stationary or mobile environments and users.
Cisco Aironet 1400 family wireless bridges provide high-performance, dependable outside connections for line-of-sight applications. These devices include a durable enclosure that can hold up to severe outside environments and operate within broad temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco WLAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers are provide single-point management of wireless networks by simplifying the handling of common technologies including integrated IPS, fast RF management, automatic deployment, and full N+1 redundancy. Cisco Wireless Network controllers operate with lightweight access points to offer enhanced throughput and advanced management functions.
WLAN Controllers provide the manageability, scalability, protection, and reliability that IT managers require to build safe, enterprise-scale wireless environments, from satellite locations to small companies to headquarter campuses. Cisco's first-generation Wireless Controllers can be clustered to provide support for as many as 2400 wireless access points for each roaming domain.
Cisco's WLCM or WLCM-E Controller Module for Integrated Services (IS) Routers offers small-to mid-size businesses and enterprises a cost effective way to implement and control protected wireless LANs at branch locations. These controllers supervise as many as 12 Cisco APs and are supported on Cisco 2800/3800 Series Routers and Cisco 3700 Series Routers. (To learn about Progent's remote and onsite consulting support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router configuration and management consulting.)
How Progent's Consultants Can Assist Your Company with Cisco Wireless Solutions
Progent can provide access to a Cisco-certified consultant to help you to plan, install, manage and repair a converged wired and wireless environment integrating a broad array of wireless products that offer the same protection, expandability, and manageability you demand from a wired network. Progent can help you to manage early-generation Wi-Fi solutions from Cisco or upgrade efficiently to current 802.11ac Wi-Fi technology. Progent's CISM and CISSP security specialists can advise you about how to design security into your WLAN and your business processes. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity planning consultants can assist you to configure the HA technology incorporated into Cisco's wired/wireless products so your converged network delivers non-stop business value.
Progentís Wireless Site Survey helps you to plan and deploy a state-of-the-art wireless network optimized for your environment, providing a wireless ecosystem that delivers seamless coverage, high speed and capacity, Quality of Service to support IP voice and video, advanced security, and simplified management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be delivered online to cut time and costs, or onsite for more difficult situations.
For a more in-depth discussion of Progent's wireless consulting capabilities, see Progent's Wireless Expertise.
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