Cisco has developed a comprehensive portfolio of wireless networking devices and software tools intended to provide continual access to data and resources and to facilitate collaboration among workers, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless products include the Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of wireless access points, plus Cisco's Wireless LAN Controller plug-ins and appliances. Progent's Cisco-certified wireless consulting experts can help organizations of any size to utilize Cisco wireless solutions to support the current paradigm of Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) computing by converging their wired and wireless ecosystems to benefit from simplified configuration, consistent and fast performance, single-point control, enterprise-wide policy, high availability (HA), and across-the-board protection.
Cisco's Converged Security Architecture for Bring-Your-Own-Device and Wired/Wireless Access
Cisco's Unified Wireless solution can scale to as many as 18,000 wireless access points with full Layer 3 connectivity across local or remote venues such as enterprise headquarters, university lecture halls, branch offices, and home offices. Cisco's 802.11x APs and wireless controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are designed to deliver the same degree of protection, performance, and ease of management for WLANs that companies expect in their wired infrastructure. Cisco's technology includes integrated mobility services such as VoIP, IP video, and secure guest access. Cisco's Unified Wireless Network architecture enables organizations to build Wi-Fi ecosystems that improve the way they do business and enhance productivity via a mobile and connected workforce.
Progent's Cisco-certified network consultants can provide online or on-premises expertise to assist you to design, deploy, maintain, upgrade, and troubleshoot converged wired and wireless network infrastructure of any size and for any venue. Also, Progent can provide value-priced online and onsite wireless site surveys to assist your company to plan and deploy a Wi-Fi network with customized AP clusters optimized for your individual work area layout, building characteristics, and intended application.
Cisco Small Business, Aironet and Meraki Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of access points enable businesses to integrate wired/wireless infrastructure to provide the coverage, density, throughput, security compliance and manageability required for virtually any environment. Cisco's access points range from bare bones, single-radio 802.11b/g/n units with throughput of 300 Mbps intended for small companies or home offices to dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n/ac APs capable of supporting hundreds of wireless clients on each AP and delivering sustained data rates as high as 1.9 Gigabits per second. Cisco's latest selection of wireless access points can be clustered to provide the capacity to support sites with high client density and with a high incidence of video-intense applications.
Small Business Family of Access Points
Cisco's Small Business Series of APs are Linux-based units engineered as value-priced wireless solutions for small offices. Most models in the Cisco Small Business portfolio of wireless access points support Cisco's Single Point Setup technology, which makes it possible to configure, manage and troubleshoot a cluster of wireless access points from one AP via a simple web browser tool. All models include Power over Ethernet (POE) and provide QoS, rogue access point awareness, and bridge mode for wirelessly connecting to a second Ethernet LAN.
Cisco's Small Business WAP121 Access Point is a wallmount, single-band 2.4GHz unit that can support 16 active 802.11b/g/n clients, includes a 10/100 Ethernet port, permits up to 4 AP devices and 40 active clients per cluster, and supports data rates of 300 Mbps. The Cisco WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11n access point able to support 16 wireless clients per radio for up to 32 clients, includes a 10/100/1000 Ethernet LAN interface, and can support throughput of up to 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not support AP clustering. Cisco's WAP150 is a general-purpose Wave 1 dual-radio 802.11ac/n wireless access point that includes a 1xGE Power over Ethernet port and can support up to 16 clients from each radio with 867 Mbps throughput for 802.11ac devices and 300 Mbps for 802.11n devices. Cisco's Small Business WAP150 allows four access points for each cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP321 AP is a wall-mountable selectable-band (2.4 or 5 GHz) 802.11a/b/g/n device with support for 80 active wireless clients sharing an 8-AP cluster. The Cisco WAP321 features a Gigabit Ethernet interface and can deliver throughput of 300 Mbps for the selected radio. Cisco's Small Business WAP351 is a dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n wireless access point with a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can support 32 wireless clients on each radio for up to 64 active clients, and deliver a sustained data rate of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP351 does not allow clustering. Cisco's Small Business WAP361 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11ac access point that features a 5 x Gb Ethernet switch, allows 32 clients on each radio, and offers 867 Mbps throughput for 802.11ac devices and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco WAP361 allows 8 access points for each cluster. Cisco's wallmount WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-band device that works with 802.11n and the new 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port, can support up to 32 wireless clients per radio, and eight access points for each cluster.
The Cisco WAP561 Wireless-N Dual Radio AP includes one 10/100/1000 Ethernet interface and two radios (2.4 and 5.0 GHz) that deliver 450 Mbps performance for each radio, support 64 devices for each radio, and allow 16 wireless access points for each cluster. The Cisco WAP551 is similar to Cisco's WAP 561 but has a single radio selectable band. The Cisco Small Business WAP571 and WAP571E (a ruggedized outside model) are dual-band 802.11ac APs that feature two Gb Ethernet ports with link aggregation (LAG), 3x3 MIMO, and up to 1.9 Gigabit/sec throughput with 1300 Mbps over 11ac and 600 Mbps over 11n. Both devices support 32 active WAN clients per radio and 16 WAP371 access points per cluster.
For details about Progent's consulting services for both current and older Cisco Small Business 100, 300 and 500 family of WiFi access points, see Cisco Small Business wireless APs system design and troubleshooting.
The Aironet Line of Wireless Access Points
The Aironet line of wireless access points has for years been the leading access point product. Aironet wireless access points range from value-priced entry-level models to advanced units. Cisco's Aironet series cover several generations of devices compliant with the continually improving 802 standard. Cisco's latest line of Aironet access points support Cisco's Unified Wireless Network architecture and come with 802.11ac technology, which offers three times the performance plus superior coverage and density in comparison to the prior generation of APs. Cisco's latest dual-band Aironet access points continue to accommodate 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients that lack 802.11ac radios.
The oldest Aironet APs are outdated devices that have come to end-of-sale status and are not fully supported by Cisco. Progent continues to provide technical support for the complete Aironet family of wireless access points and can help your company to manage and troubleshoot your current Aironet wireless system or move smoothly to current Aironet technology. For details about Progent's consulting services for both current and legacy Cisco Aironet access points, see Cisco Aironet APs planning and support.
Cisco's Meraki Wireless Access Points
Cisco's portfolio of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor wireless access points include budget-friendly models for small businesses to enterprise-class products that offer as high as 2.5 Gbit/sec performance. Each Cisco Meraki indoor wireless access point offers high-end features such as plug-and-play installation, advanced security, BYOD support, extensive traffic analysis, automatic over-the-web firmware updates, and consolidated cloud-based management via an intuitive dashboard. Every Cisco Meraki indoor wireless access point also incorporates two powerful radios with enhanced reception as well as a separate radio that offers intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) security for threat detection and deep packet inspection.
Cisco's Meraki outdoor wireless access points are IP67 certified, designed to withstand harsh outdoor environments, and tested to resist dust particles, shock and moisture. Cisco's Meraki outdoor wireless access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and offer advanced capabilities such as cloud management with network-wide control, native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan (NAC), single-click secure guest access and isolation firewall, Layer 7 traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with MIMO and beamforming. For more information about Progent's support for Cisco's Meraki wireless access points and management, see Meraki APs system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco Wave 2 802.11ax Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers enable realtime communication, configuration, administration, analysis and troubleshooting for Cisco Wi-Fi devices and services. Cisco has developed both hardware and virtual wireless controllers for centralized administration of wireless environments, but networks with many wireless access points are better served by physical Wi-Fi controllers. Wave 2 wireless controller devices from Cisco offer major benefits over Wave 1 and earlier models including greater throughput, simultaneous support for both 1G and 10G Ethernet, enhanced application visibility and control, and advanced, integrated protection.
The Cisco 3504 WiFi Controller is an entry-level device available in a desktop enclosure and intended for smaller businesses. You can install the 3504 in a centralized network environment such as in small branch and remote offices managed over the wide-area network with FlexConnect, or in bridge deployments where wiring is limited. The 3504 wireless controller can handle up to 150 APs and 3,000 clients, delivers 4 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Cisco's 3504 wireless controller includes a Cisco Multigigabit port and four 1-Gigabit Ethernet connections. APs can be attached to the controller through two PoE ports. The 3504 wireless controller offers fast failover for APs and users, which provides nonstop availability for apps. As with other current Wave 2 wireless controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 model has the integrated ability to work with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services Engine, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WiFi controllers.
Cisco's 5520 Wireless Controller, available in a 1 rack unit (RU) package, is intended to support midsize to large enterprises and campus environments and can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 wireless controller can handle as many as 1,500 wireless APs and 20,000 client users, delivers 20 Gbps performance, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 WiFi controller features two 10 GE interfaces and features SSD storage, redundant fans, optional redundant power supplies, and rapid failover for nonstop availability.
The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller, offered in a 2 rack unit package, is a high-end WiFi controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campus environments. The 8540 WiFi controller can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments and supports up to 6,000 APs and 64,000 clients. The 8540 WiFi controller offers throughput as high as 40 Gbps and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller includes four 1-GB or 10GE ports and features SSD storage, redundant power supplies, redundant fans, and subsecond failover.
Wave 1 Cisco WiFi LAN Controllers
Cisco wireless controllers reduce the time and cost required to deploy, monitor, and operate wireless networks by offering single-point control of critical tasks like provisioning access points, enforcing single-point policies across wired/wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide QoS for IP voice and video, monitoring and optimizing system performance, activating intrusion prevention tools to guard against unauthorized access and Distributed Denial of Service threats, and managing IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless LAN controllers for organizations of all sizes and can provide desktop or rackmount controllers, modular add-on controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and Catalyst switches with built-in wireless network controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 WiFi network controllers include Cisco CleanAir technology to avoid RF interference and create self-healing and self-optimizing wireless networks for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac throughput and security. Built-in Bonjour Gateways enable discovery and policy across WLAN, LAN and WAN for Apple applications. For high availability, Cisco wireless controllers allow wireless access point and client stateful switchover by enabling a backup high-availability wireless controller to synchronize with a primary wireless controller for AP license tabulation, CAPWAP state and roaming keys, and AP CAPWAP state. In case the primary wireless controller goes down, thousands of wireless access points and wireless clients can switchover at subsecond speeds to the backup controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR G2 Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac support for Cisco 2900 and 3900 routers deployed by smaller organizations and branch offices. This value-priced and expandable solution can support up to 200 APs and as many as 6000 wireless clients. (To learn about Progent's online and on-premises consulting and troubleshooting support for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting support.)
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU switches intended for small to mid-size businesses and branch offices and have a built-in wireless network controller with the ability to support 40 Gb of wireless capacity for each switch and up to 25 access points and 1000 clients on each switch or stack. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches designed for midsize and large organizations and include an integrated wireless LAN controller with up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity on each switch and the ability to handle 50 wireless access points and up to 2000 wireless clients. The WiSM2 is an add-in blade for Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless LAN controller intended for mid-to-large size businesses and capable of 20 Gbps throughput and with support for up to 1000 wireless access points and 15,000 clients. (For information about Progent's online and onsite consulting support for Cisco Catalyst switches, see Cisco Catalyst switches deployment and management support.)
Cisco 2500 Wireless Controllers are economical desktop devices that streamline the provisioning and operation of Wi-Fi LANs for small to medium-sized enterprises and branch offices. The Cisco 2500 wireless LAN controller supports 5 to 75 APs and up to 1000 clients and can deliver sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Series Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU appliance designed for mid-to-large sized businesses and campus environments and can manage up to 500 APs and 7,000 clients while delivering 8 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance intended for mid-to-large campus environments with support for 1000 wireless access points and 12,000 wireless clients and delivering performance of 60 Gbps to handle high client densities and high usage of video-intensive applications.
Cisco's Flex 7500 Wireless Controller is designed to manage massive collections of wireless remote sites from one location, eliminating the requirement for a wireless controller at every remote site. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 allows you to build a private cloud to configure, track, maintain, 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 device engineered to monitor and manage Wi-Fi environments for large campuses or for service providers and can be expanded to support up to 6000 APs and 64,000 wireless clients while offering 10 Gbps throughput.
To learn more about Cisco WiFi controllers, see Cisco wireless controllers consulting services.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Access Points, Bridges and Wireless Controllers Supported by Progent
The introduction of the 802.11ac specification for wireless connectivity virtually made obsolete the previous generations of Wi-Fi products for environments that support high densities of wireless clients and high incidence of HD video applications. Even for organizations who do not need the bandwidth efficiency of 802.11ac, many of Cisco wireless products have arrived at end-of-sale or end-of-support status, which can present significant maintenance and regulatory compliance issues. Progent's Cisco-certified consultants offer remote and onsite support for a broad array of older-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can in addition help organizations to evaluate the financial justification for updating legacy wireless infrastructure and can assist in planning and carrying out affordable, non-disruptive upgrades. The following are a few of Cisco older-generation Wi-Fi devices that Progent's consultants continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Cisco Aironet 1000 or 1130AG family APs are intended for offices and similar venues which have little environmental variability. These access points include built-in antennas that provide dependable radio coverage patterns. The Aironet 1130G Series product is designed for restricted domains that do not allow 5GHz operation.
Cisco Aironet 1230AG/1240AG family wireless access points are designed for more difficult RF situations like manufacturing plants and warehouses or above suspended ceilings which commonly require adjustable protruding antennas and rugged metal cases. The 1240G Series wireless access point is available for regulatory domains that do not allow 5GHz transmission.
Aironet 1500 family lightweight outdoor wireless mesh LAN access points offer an economical, scalable, secure outdoor Wi-Fi solution for campus areas and for public sites that need access for portable phones or computers.
Legacy Cisco Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco Aironet wireless LAN bridges offer a high-throughput and multi-featured solution for integrating numerous local area networks in a metro area or public wireless network. Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer a versatile, manageable technology that satisfies the security requirements of public networking professionals. They support both P2P and P2MP configurations with excellent range and the ability to handle traffic throughput as high as 54 Mbps.
Cisco Aironet wireless bridges offer data rates dramatically higher than E1/T1 lines for far less expense, doing away with the necessity of costly leased lines when connecting separate offices. Because wireless bridges require no recurring costs, savings on leased-line services rapidly cover the initial equipment investment. Private lines and in some cases leased lines using metal or fiber-optic cable can require high initial costs in cases where they are separated by obstacles like highways, railroads, or bodies of water. Cisco wireless LAN bridges can be deployed quickly an offer a fast ROI.
Cisco Aironet 1300 family outside wireless access points/bridges can be deployed as stand-alone wireless access points, bridges, or wireless group bridges. These products have a ruggedized cover and offer high-speed, cost-effective wireless interfaces between multiple fixed or mobile networks and clients.
Cisco 1400 Series wireless bridges provide high-speed, dependable outdoor bridging for line-of-sight (LOS) environments. These devices include a ruggedized enclosure that can withstand severe outside conditions and can function in broad temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Controllers
Cisco Wireless Controllers provide single-point management of WLANs by simplifying the control of common functions including integrated intrusion prevention system (IPS), fast RF management, automatic deployment, and N+1 redundancy. Cisco Wireless Network controllers work with lightweight access points to offer superior throughput and advanced management functions.
Cisco WLAN Controllers offer the manageability, expandability, security, and resilience that network managers need to create safe, enterprise-scale wireless networks, from branch locations to small companies to main campuses. Cisco's first-generation Wireless Network Controllers can be configured together to provide accommodation for up to 2400 access points per roaming domain.
The Cisco WLCM or WLCM-E Controller Module for IS Routers offers small-to medium businesses (SMBs) and enterprises an affordable way to deploy and manage protected WLANs at satellite offices. These products supervise up to 12 Cisco Aironet wireless access points and are supported on Cisco 2800/3800 Series Routers and 3700 IS Routers. (To learn about Progent's remote and on-premises consulting support for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting consulting.)
How Progent Can Help Your Company with Cisco Wireless Devices
Progent can provide a Cisco-certified expert to help your business to plan, deploy, maintain and repair a converged wired and wireless infrastructure integrating a broad array of wireless products that provide the same protection, scalability, and ease of management you expect from your wired network. Progent can help you to support early-generation Wi-Fi solutions from Cisco or migrate seamlessly to current 802.11ac-comaptible products. Progent's CISM and CISSP security professionals can show you how to design security into your WLAN and into your business operations. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity planners can help you to deploy the high availability features built into Cisco's wireless and wired technologies so your converged network provides significant return on investment.
Progentís Wireless Site Survey assists you to design and implement a state-of-the-art WLAN optimized for your environment, offering a Wi-Fi solution that delivers comprehensive coverage, high speed and density, Quality of Service features to accommodate IP video, advanced security and compliance, and streamlined management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be performed online to cut time and costs, or on premises to deal with more complex environments.
For a further discussion of Progent's wireless integration capabilities, see Progent's Wireless Network Consulting Services.
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