Cisco wireless controllers simplify the management of Wi-Fi environments by centralizing the deployment and management of Wi-Fi access points, optimizing wireless performance by minimizing the effects of radio congestion, improving Wi-Fi uptime with rapid auto-failover, and hardening security by detecting threats and filtering traffic content based on user type and location.
Cisco's wireless controllers work with Cisco's Prime Infrastructure and DNA Center management tools and can support as many as 6,000 Wi-Fi access points and 64,000 clients. Cisco's family of Wi-Fi controllers are available at price points and with capabilities suitable for venues ranging from small or home offices to service provider networks, enterprises, and large campus environments. Cisco's 802.11ax and 802.11ac controllers and Wi-Fi access points are engineered to deliver the same level of security, performance and reliability that users expect from their wired environments. Cisco's technology incorporates integrated mobility support such as Voice over IP, HD video, and protected guest access. Cisco's Prime Infrastructure and DNA Center platforms make it possible for businesses to build environments that combine wired and wireless networks into a centrally managed ecosystem that ensures a seamless and productive work environment.
Progent's seasoned wireless consultants can assist your organization to assess the business benefits of deploying Cisco wireless controllers to administer WiFi networks of any size. Progent can assist you to support and troubleshoot your existing Cisco-based wireless ecosystem or help you to design and carry out a cost-effective upgrade from older wireless controllers to modern models to get enhanced performance and security and to streamline administration.
Progent's Cisco-certified network infrastructure consultants can provide affordable remote consulting services across the U.S. and Canada to help you to create and enhance Wi-Fi networks. Progent also offers onsite consulting and troubleshooting in larger metropolitan areas across the U.S. and in Toronto, Canada. In addition, Progent offers online predictive and onsite Wireless Site Surveys to assist your company to plan a Wi-Fi network with wireless access points located and set up efficiently for your particular office environment, application workloads, and client density.
Cisco 9800 Series 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6-supported wireless LAN controllers help you manage modern wireless environments that incorporate 802.11ax access points. 802.11ax, also called Wi-Fi 6, improves on previous generation 802.11ac (called Wi-Fi 5) appliances by delivering less latency and more reliable performance, supporting higher client user density, providing enhanced protection, conserving energy for battery-dependent mobile devices, and allowing more versatility for handling the latest kinds of IoT endpoints. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 family wireless controllers feature high availability with seamless software updates, live patching, and the ability to add APs with zero downtime. Advanced security technologies include Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA), image signing, and Cisco Software-Defined Access (SD-Access). Streaming telemetry allows you to monitor and understand infrastructure and client health. All devices in the Catalyst 9800 line are powered by Cisco's IOS XE Software and work with Cisco's DNA Center (DNAC) or with Cisco Prime Infrastructure network management platforms. Catalyst 9800 wireless LAN controllers can manage Cisco Aironet 802.11ac Wave 1 and Wave 2 APs concurrently with Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 access points.
Cisco 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 controller appliances support greater scale than Cisco's embedded wireless controllers
The Cisco 9800-L 802.11ax Controller is an entry-level appliance with a half-width 1RU body that allows side-by-side installation in a 19-in rack. Designed for smaller businesses, the 9800-L offers extra speed and scale for customers with a Performance license option. The 9800-L can handle 250 APs and 5,000 client users (500 APs and 10,00 clients if you have a Performance license). The 9800-L delivers 5 Gbps data rates (10 Gbps with a Performance license), and supports 4,096 VLANs. Deployment scenarios include Centralized, FlexConnect for remote office installations, and fabric. Integrated uplinks include four 2.5G/1G ports and either two 10G/Multigigabit copper (Catalyst 9800-L-C) or two 10G/Multigigabit fiber ports (Catalyst 9800-L-F). Other ports include an RJ-45 console port and a Micro USB console port for out-of-band management, a USB 3.0 interface for adding external RAM memory, an RJ-45 service port, and an RJ-45 high-availability redundancy port used for SSO.
The Cisco Catalyst 9800-40 802.11ax Wireless Controller, available in a 1 rack unit package, is intended to support midsize campus environments. The 9800-40 can handle 2,000 Wi-Fi access points and 32,000 clients. The appliance offers 40 Gbps throughput and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Deployment modes include Centralized, Cisco FlexConnect, and Fabric Wireless (SD-Access). Integrated ports include four GE SFP/10 GE SFP+ or SFP interfaces and an SFP Gigabit Ethernet redundancy interface. Other integrated interfaces include RJ-45 and USB 3.0 console ports, an RJ-45 management port, an RJ-45 redundancy interface used for stateful switchover (SSO), and two USB 3.0 ports for plugging in external RAM memory.
Cisco's Catalyst 9800-80 Wi-Fi 6 Controller, offered in a 2 rack unit enclosure, is an expandable, top-of-the-line Wi-Fi controller intended to manage large campus and service provider environments. The 9800-80 supports 60,00 APs and 64,000 clients. The 9800-80 delivers a maximum of 80 Gbps throughput and supports 4,096 VLANs. Deployment options include Centralized, Cisco FlexConnect, and Fabric Wireless (SD-Access). Integrated uplink interfaces include eight 10G SFP+ ports or six 10G ports and two 1G ports. Available uplink modules include 18 1GE ports, 10 10GE interfaces, a 40GE interface, two 40GE interfaces, or a 100GE interface. Other integrated interfaces include RJ-45 and USB 3.0 console interfaces, an RJ-45 service port, an SFP Gigabit Ethernet redundancy interface for stateful switchover (SSO), an RJ-45 redundancy port used for stateful switchover (SSO), and two USB 3.0 ports for adding external RAM memory.
Cisco Wave 2 802.11ac Wi-Fi 5 Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 wireless controllers enable fast data exchange, provisioning, administration, monitoring and debugging for Cisco wireless devices and services. Cisco offers both hardware and software-based Wi-Fi controllers for centralized management of wireless environments, but WLANs with many wireless access points typically require hardware-based Wi-Fi controllers. Wave 2 wireless controller devices from Cisco deliver major benefits over Wave 1 and earlier products including greater throughput, concurrent support for 1G and 10G Ethernet, improved application visibility and control, and hardened, integrated protection.
Cisco's Wave 2 wireless controllers can support 802.11ac Wi-Fi access points
Cisco's 3504 WiFi Controller is an entry-level device available in a desktop body and designed for small and medium-sized organizations. You can use the 3504 in a centralized network architecture such as in lean branch and remote offices administered across the wide-area network via FlexConnect, or in bridge installations where wiring is sparse. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller can handle as many as 150 WiFi access points and 3,000 client users, delivers 4 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Cisco's 3504 controller features a multi-gigabit Ethernet interface and four 1-GB Ethernet connections. APs can be connected directly to the controller via two Power over Ethernet ports. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller features fast failover for access points and users, which allows uninterrupted availability for applications. As with other current Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 model has the integrated ability to communicate with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WLAN controllers.
The Cisco 5520 WiFi Controller, offered in a 1RU enclosure, is intended to support larger enterprises and campus networks and can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 wireless controller supports up to 1,500 access points and 20,000 users, offers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 wireless controller features two 10 GE interfaces and features solid-state storage, backup fans, optional redundant power supplies, and rapid failover for nonstop availability.
The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller, offered in a 2 rack unit (RU) enclosure, is a high-end WiFi controller intended to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campus environments. The 8540 WiFi controller can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments and can handle up to 6,000 Wi-Fi access points and 64,000 clients. The 8540 Wireless controller can deliver data rates up to 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller includes four 1-GB or 10GE interfaces and features SSD storage, dual power supplies, redundant fans, and subsecond failover.
Wave 1 Cisco WiFi LAN Controllers
Cisco wireless LAN controllers cut the time and cost needed to deploy, monitor, and operate wireless networks by offering single-point control of tasks like provisioning access points, applying consistent policies throughout converged wired/wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service (QoS) for voice and HD video, monitoring and troubleshooting network health, implementing security tools to defend against unauthorized access and DDoS attacks, and handling IPv6 and dual-stack clients. Cisco has designed wireless LAN controllers for organizations of all sizes and can provide desktop or rackmount appliances, modular add-on wireless controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and Catalyst switches with integrated wireless LAN controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 WiFi controllers include Cisco CleanAir tools to avoid signal interference and create self-optimizing wireless LANs for top 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Built-in Apple Bonjour Gateways allow discovery, advertisement and policy throughout the enterprise for Apple-based applications. For fault tolerance, Cisco wireless network controllers allow wireless access point and client stateful switchover by permitting a standby HA controller to synchronize with a primary wireless controller for access point license count, CAPWAP keys, and AP CAPWAP state. In case the main wireless controller goes down, thousands of wireless access points and wireless clients can failover at subsecond speeds to the backup wireless LAN controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR G2 Routers with UCS-E offers entry-level 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for Cisco 2900 and 3900 routers deployed by small to medium-sized businesses and branches. This affordable and scalable module can handle from five to 200 APs and as many as 6000 clients. (To learn about Progent's online and onsite consulting and troubleshooting support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting services.)
Cisco Legacy Wi-Fi LAN Controllers
Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU switches intended for SMBs and satellite offices and features a built-in wireless LAN controller with the capability to support 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and 25 access points and 1000 wireless clients per switch or stack. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches designed for mid-size and large organizations and feature a built-in wireless LAN controller with 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and the ability to handle up to 50 wireless access points and 2000 wireless clients. The Wireless Services Module2 (WiSM2) is an add-in blade for Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless LAN controller designed for mid-to-large size businesses and capable of 20 Gbps performance and able to handle up to 1000 access points and 15,000 wireless clients. (To find out concerning Progent's online and onsite consulting support for Cisco switches, see Catalyst switches deployment and troubleshooting services.)
Cisco 2500 Wireless Controllers are value-priced desktop devices that streamline the provisioning and management of Wi-Fi networks for small and midsize businesses and branch offices. The Cisco 2500 wireless controller supports 5 to 75 APs and up to 1000 wireless clients and can deliver throughput of 1 Gbps.
The Cisco 5500 Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU unit intended for mid-to-large sized enterprises and campus environments and can support 500 access points and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 5760 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance designed for mid-to-large campus environments with support for 1000 APs and 12,000 wireless clients and delivering performance of 60 Gbps to accommodate high client densities and high usage of media-rich applications.
The Cisco Flex 7500 Series Wireless Controller is intended to enable centralized management of thousands of wireless branches from one location, avoiding the need for a wireless controller at each remote site. The 1RU Flex 7500 appliance lets you establish a private cloud to deploy, monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot as many as 6000 wireless access points and 64,000 clients while supporting 1 Gbps performance. Cisco's 8500 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU rackmount device engineered to manage Wi-Fi networks for large campuses or for service providers and can scale to support 6000 wireless points and 64,000 clients while offering 10 Gbps throughput.
To learn more details concerning Progent's engineering help for Cisco solutions, choose a subject:
Contact Progent for Consulting Support for Cisco Wi-Fi Controllers
To learn more about Progent's consulting services for Cisco wireless controllers, call 1-800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.