Cisco wireless controllers streamline the management of Wi-Fi networks by centralizing the deployment and administration of Wi-Fi access points, optimizing wireless performance by minimizing the impact of radio interference, enhancing Wi-Fi uptime with fast auto-failover, and hardening protection by uncovering cyber threats and filtering traffic content based on user ID and location.
Cisco's wireless controllers integrate with Cisco's Prime Infrastructure and DNA Center (DNAC) network management solutions and are able to support as many as 6,000 Wi-Fi access points and 64,000 client users. Cisco's line of wireless controllers are available at price points and with capabilities appropriate for networks that run from branch offices to service provider systems, enterprises, and dense campus environments. Cisco's 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 and Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 controllers and access points are engineered to deliver the high level of security, performance and reliability that companies are accustomed to from their wired network. Cisco's technology incorporates built-in mobility services such as Voice over IP, HD video, and safe guest access. Cisco's Prime Infrastructure and DNA Center platforms make it possible for organizations to build systems that combine wired and Wi-Fi networks into a unified ecosystem that delivers a seamless and productive work environment.
Progent's certified Wi-Fi consultants can assist you to assess the business benefits of deploying Cisco Wi-Fi controllers to manage WiFi environments of any size. Progent can assist you to manage and troubleshoot your current Cisco-based wireless solution or assist you to plan and implement a cost-effective migration from earlier generation wireless controllers to modern models to get enhanced functionality and protection and to simplify management.
Progent's Cisco-certified network infrastructure consultants can provide low-cost remote consulting and support services across the U.S. and Canada to help businesses to build and refine Wi-Fi solutions. Progent can also provide onsite consulting in major metropolitan areas across the United States and in Toronto, Canada. In addition, Progent offers economical online and onsite wireless Site Surveys to help you to design a Wi-Fi network with wireless access points located and configured efficiently for your specific office environment, application workloads, and user density.
Cisco 9800 Series 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6-supported wireless controllers help you manage advanced wireless environments that support 802.11ax wireless APs. 802.11ax, also called Wi-Fi 6, improves on prior generation 802.11ac (called Wi-Fi 5) devices by providing less latency and more predictable performance, allowing higher client user density, offering enhanced security, saving energy for battery-powered handheld devices, and allowing more versatility for handling new kinds of Internet-of-Things endpoints. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 family wireless controllers feature always-on availability with transparent software upgrades, live fixes, and the ability to connect additional wireless APs with zero downtime. Enhanced cybersecurity features include Cisco Wireless Intrusion Prevention System (WIPS), image signing, and Software-Defined Access. Streaming telemetry allows you to track and understand infrastructure and endpoint health. All controllers in the Catalyst 9800 line are powered by Cisco's IOS XE Software and operate with Cisco's DNA Center (DNAC) or Cisco Prime Infrastructure network management platforms. Catalyst 9800 Series wireless LAN controllers can manage Cisco Aironet 802.11ac Wave 1 and Wave 2 access points as well as Cisco Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wi-Fi access points.
Cisco 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 wireless controller appliances support greater scale than Cisco's embedded wireless controllers
Cisco's 9800-L Wi-Fi 6 Controller is an entry-level device available in a half-width 1RU body that allows dual installation in a 19-in rack. Intended for smaller wireless networks, the controller delivers extra speed and capacity if you purchase a Performance license option. The 9800-L supports 250 wireless APs and 5,000 clients (500 Wi-Fi access points and 10,00 clients with a Performance license). The appliance delivers 5 Gbps data rates (10 Gbps with a Performance license), and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Deployment scenarios include Centralized, FlexConnect for branch office deployments, and fabric. Fixed uplinks include four 2.5G/1G ports and two 10G/Multigigabit copper (Catalyst 9800-L-C) or two 10G/Multigigabit fiber ports (Catalyst 9800-L-F). Additional ports include an RJ-45 console port and a Micro USB console interface for management, a USB 3.0 port for plugging in external RAM memory, an RJ-45 management port, and an RJ-45 high-availability redundancy interface for stateful switchover.
The Cisco Catalyst 9800-40 Wi-Fi 6 Controller, available in a 1 rack unit package, is intended for midsize campus environments. The 9800-40 supports 2,000 wireless APs and 32,000 client users. The appliance offers 40 Gbps throughput and supports 4,096 VLANs. Deployment scenarios include Centralized, FlexConnect, and Fabric Wireless. Integrated interfaces include four GE SFP/10 GE SFP+ or SFP ports and an SFP Gigabit Ethernet redundancy interface. Additional fixed interfaces include RJ-45 and USB 3.0 console ports, an RJ-45 management interface, an RJ-45 redundancy interface used for stateful switchover (SSO), and two USB 3.0 ports for adding external RAM memory.
The Cisco Catalyst 9800-80 Wi-Fi 6 Controller, offered in a 2 rack unit enclosure, is an expandable, high-end wireless controller designed to manage large campus and service provider deployments. The 9800-80 can handle 60,00 wireless APs and 64,000 clients. The 9800-80 delivers up to 80 Gbps data rates and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Deployment options include Centralized, FlexConnect, and Fabric Wireless. Integrated uplink interfaces include eight 10G SFP+ interfaces or six 10G interfaces plus two 1G interfaces. Available hot swappable uplink add-in modules provide 18 1GE interfaces, 10 10GE interfaces, a 40GE port, two 40GE interfaces, or a 100GE port. Other integrated interfaces include RJ-45 and USB 3.0 console ports, an RJ-45 management interface, an SFP Gigabit Ethernet redundancy port used for SSO, an RJ-45 redundancy interface for stateful switchover, and two USB 3.0 interfaces for adding external RAM.
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 wireless controllers enable realtime communication, configuration, control, monitoring and debugging for Cisco Wi-Fi appliances and software services. Cisco offers both physical and software-based Wi-Fi controllers for unified management of wireless environments, but networks with a large number of Wi-Fi access points are better served by physical wireless controllers. Wave 2 Wi-Fi controller appliances from Cisco offer major advantages over Wave 1 and older models such as higher performance, simultaneous support for both 1G and 10G Ethernet, improved application visibility and control, and hardened, built-in protection.
Cisco's Wave 2 wireless controllers can support Wi-Fi 5 access points
Cisco's 3504 WiFi Controller is a value-priced device with a desktop body and designed for small and medium-sized businesses. You can use the 3504 in a centralized WLAN environment such as in small branch and remote offices managed across the wide-area network with FlexConnect, or in bridge deployments where wiring is limited. The 3504 wireless controller can handle as many as 150 APs and 3,000 client users, offers 4 Gbps throughput, and supports 4,096 VLANs. Cisco's 3504 wireless controller features a Cisco Multigigabit port (up to 5 Gigabit Ethernet) and four 1-Gigabit Ethernet connections. Access points can be attached directly to the WiFi controller through two PoE ports. The 3504 wireless controller features fast failover for APs and users, which allows high availability for apps. Like other current Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 model has the built-in ability to communicate with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WiFi controllers.
The Cisco 5520 WiFi Controller, available in a 1 rack unit form factor, is intended to support midsize to large enterprises and campus networks and can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments. The 5520 Wi-Fi controller can handle as many as 1,500 Wi-Fi access points and 20,000 client users, offers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 wireless controller features two 10 GE ports and incorporates SSD storage, redundant fans, optional redundant power supplies, and rapid failover for uninterrupted availability.
The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller, available in a 2RU package, is a high-end wireless controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 Wireless controller can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures and can handle up to 6,000 access points and 64,000 clients. The 8540 WiFi controller can deliver throughput as high as 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller comes with four 1-GB or 10GE interfaces and features SSD storage, backup power supplies, backup fans, and subsecond failover.
Wave 1 Cisco Wireless Network Controllers
Cisco wireless network controllers reduce the effort and expense required to deploy, monitor, and troubleshoot wireless networks by offering single-point control of critical tasks such as setting up APs, enforcing consistent policies throughout converged LANs, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service for IP voice and HD video, tracking and troubleshooting network performance, implementing security tools to defend against unauthorized access and Distributed Denial of Service threats, and handling IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless network controllers for businesses of all sizes and offers desktop or rackmount appliances, modular add-on controllers for Cisco ISR routers and Catalyst switches, and switches with built-in wireless network controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 WiFi controllers incorporate Cisco CleanAir tools to minimize RF interference and produce self-healing wireless networks for top 802.11n and 802.11ac throughput and protection. Integrated Apple Bonjour Gateways permit discovery across WLAN, LAN and WAN for Apple applications. For fault tolerance, Cisco wireless controllers allow wireless access point and client stateful failover by enabling a standby HA wireless controller to synch with a primary wireless controller for access point license tabulation, CAPWAP keys, and AP CAPWAP state. In case the main controller goes down, thousands of APs and clients can switchover in less than a second to the secondary wireless controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR G2 Routers with UCS-E offers basic 802.11n and 802.11ac support for 2900 and 3900 Series routers deployed by small to medium-sized businesses and satellite offices. This value-priced and expandable module can handle up to 200 access points and up to 6000 clients. (For information concerning Progent's remote and onsite consulting and troubleshooting support for Cisco routers, see Cisco router configuration and troubleshooting consulting.)
Cisco Legacy Wi-Fi LAN Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches designed for SMBs and branch offices and have a built-in wireless network controller with the capability to handle 40 Gb of wireless throughput for each switch and 25 APs and 1000 clients per switch. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches designed for mid-size businesses and large enterprises and include a built-in wireless network controller supporting up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity on each switch and support for up to 50 APs and 2000 wireless clients. The Wireless Services Module2 is a plug-in blade for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless controller intended for mid-to-large size businesses and able to deliver 20 Gbps throughput and with support for up to 1000 APs and as many as 15,000 clients. (To find out concerning Progent's support for Cisco switches, see Cisco switches deployment and troubleshooting services.)
Cisco 2500 Series Wireless Controllers are economical desktop appliances that streamline the provisioning and management of wireless LANs for SMBs and satellite offices. The Cisco 2500 wireless controller can handle 5 to 75 wireless access points and 1000 wireless clients and can deliver sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU unit designed for medium-sized to large enterprises and campus environments and can support up to 500 APs and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps performance. The Cisco 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device intended for mid-to-large campuses with the ability to manage 1000 wireless access points and 12,000 clients and offering throughput of 60 Gbps to handle high wireless client densities and high usage of video-intensive mobile applications.
The Cisco Flex 7500 Wireless Controller is designed to manage massive collections of wireless remote sites from a single datacenter, eliminating the need for a wireless controller at each remote site. The 1RU Flex 7500 lets you create a private cloud to configure, track, manage, and repair up to 6000 APs and up to 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 8500 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU rackmount appliance designed to monitor and control wireless environments for very large campuses or service providers and can scale to support 6000 access points and 64,000 wireless clients while offering 10 Gbps throughput.
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.
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