Cisco has developed a comprehensive line of wireless LAN products and technologies intended to provide anywhere, anytime access to information and other resources and to facilitate collaboration among employees, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless offerings include Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of wireless access points, as well as Cisco's Wireless Network Controller modules and appliances. Progent's Cisco-certified wireless consultants can help businesses of any size to utilize Cisco wireless technology to support the new paradigm of BYOD computing by converging their wired/wireless environments to benefit from simplified deployment, predictable performance, centralized management, enterprise-wide policy enforcement, fault tolerance, and advanced protection.
Cisco Security Architecture for BYOD and Wired/Wireless Connectivity
The Cisco Unified Wireless Network solution can expand to as many as 18,000 APs with Layer 3 connectivity at central or offsite locations like enterprise campuses, college auditoriums, branches, and home offices. Cisco's 802.11x wireless access points and controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are engineered to deliver the identical degree of security, performance, and manageability for wireless networks that businesses demand in their wired networks. This technology includes built-in mobile services such as Voice over IP, high-definition IP video, and secure guest access. Cisco's Unified Wireless Network technology enables companies to build Wi-Fi ecosystems that improve the way they do business and enhance productivity via a mobile and collaborative employee base.
Progent's Cisco CCIE network consultants can provide online or onsite expertise to assist your organization to plan, configure, manage, upgrade, and repair converged wired and wireless network infrastructure of all sizes and for any venue. Also, Progent can provide affordable remote and on-premises wireless site surveys to help your company to design and deploy a Wi-Fi LAN with customized access point clusters optimized for your specific office layout, building characteristics, and intended application.
Cisco Small Business, Aironet and Meraki Wireless Access Points (APs)
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of access points enable businesses to integrate wired/wireless infrastructure to deliver the coverage, capacity, performance, security and ease of management needed to support practically any environment. Cisco's access points start at entry-level, single-radio 802.11b/g/n units with throughput of 300 Mbps designed for very small companies or home offices to dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n/ac wireless access points capable of supporting hundreds of clients per access point and offering sustained data rates as high as 1.9 Gigabits per second. Cisco's latest selection of access points can be combined or clustered to deliver the capacity to handle wireless networks crowded with clients and with a high incidence of video-intense application software.
Small Business Family of Access Points
Cisco's Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Family of APs are Linux-powered devices intended as entry-level Wi-Fi APs for small offices. Most versions in Cisco's Small Business line of access points work with Cisco's Single Point Setup technology, which makes it possible to configure, control and repair a cluster of access points from one AP through an intuitive browser-based interface. All of the models include POE and provide QoS, rogue AP awareness, and bridging for connecting to another Ethernet LAN.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 Access Point is a wallmount, single-band 2.4GHz device that can handle 16 802.11b/g/n wireless clients, includes a 10/100 Ethernet interface, allows up to 4 access pointss and 40 wireless clients in a cluster, and can handle throughput of up to 300 Mbps. Cisco's WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n wireless access point that can handle 16 active wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 32 clients, features a GE port, and can support sustained data rates of up to 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not support AP clustering. The Cisco Small Business WAP150 is a general-purpose dual-radio AC/n wireless access point that features a one Gbit Power over Ethernet port and can handle 16 clients from each radio with 867 Mbps performance for AC clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. Cisco's WAP1501 supports 4 APs for each cluster.
Cisco's Small Business WAP321 Wireless-N model is a wallmount selectable-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11n unit that can handle up to 80 active wireless clients in an 8-device cluster. The WAP321 includes a Gigabit Ethernet port and can support a data rate of 300 Mbps for the activated radio. Cisco's Small Business WAP351 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11n AP with a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can support 32 active wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 64 active clients, and deliver a data rate of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP351 does not allow clustering. Cisco's WAP361 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11ac access point that features a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet LAN switch, allows 32 clients per radio, and delivers 867 Mbps performance for 802.11ac clients and 300 Mbps performance for 802.11n clients. The Cisco Small Business WAP361 supports 8 access points for each cluster. Cisco's wall-mountable Small Business WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-band device that works with 802.11a/b/g/n and the new 802.11ac wireless networking standard. The WAP371 includes a Gigabit Ethernet port, can handle 32 active clients per radio, and eight APs for each cluster.
The Cisco WAP561 Wireless-N Selectable Band access point features one GE LAN interface and two radios (2.4 and 5.0 GHz) that deliver 450 Mbps throughput for each radio, support 64 clients for each radio, and allow up to 16 access points for each cluster. The Cisco WAP551 is like the WAP 561 but features a single selectable band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). The Cisco WAP571 and WAP571E (a weather-proof outside model) are dual-radio 802.11ac Wave 1 wireless access points incorporating 2 x GE ports with link aggregation (LAG), and up to 1.9 Gigabit/sec throughput with 1300 Mbps over 802.11ac and 600 Mbps on 11n. Both wireless access points support 32 clients per radio and 16 APs on each cluster.
To find out more about Progent's support for both current and older Cisco Small Business family of wireless APs, refer to Cisco Small Business 100, 300 and 500 wireless APs configuration and troubleshooting.
The Aironet Family of Access Points
The Aironet line of wireless APs has for years been the top-selling access point product. Aironet APs run the gamut from entry-level devices to enterprise-class units. Cisco's Aironet family cover several generations of devices supporting the evolving Wi-Fi standard. Cisco's latest line of Aironet wireless access points work with Cisco's Unified Wireless Network architecture and incorporate 802.11ac technology, which offers three times the speed plus superior coverage and user density in comparison to the previous generation of devices. The current dual-frequency Aironet access points can support 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients that lack 802.11ac capability.
The oldest Aironet access points are now outdated devices that have come to end-of-life status and are not fully supported by Cisco. Progent continues to support the entire Aironet family of wireless access points and can help you to manage and troubleshoot your current Aironet wireless environment or move efficiently to current Aironet products. To find out more about Progent's support for both current and outdated Aironet wireless access points, see Aironet APs planning and support.
Cisco's Meraki Access Points
Cisco's portfolio of Meraki dual-band indoor access points include budget-friendly models for small businesses to enterprise-class products that offer up to 2.5 Gbit/sec throughput. Every Cisco Meraki indoor access point provides next-generation features like plug-and-play deployment, in-depth protection, BYOD support, built-in traffic analysis, zero-touch web-based updates, and centralized cloud management for multiple sites. Every Meraki indoor access point also includes dual powerful radios with enhanced reception plus a separate radio that offers intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) security for RF analysis and deep packet inspection.
Cisco's Meraki outdoor access points are IP67 rated, designed to withstand harsh outdoor environments, and tested to resist dust, shock and humidity. Cisco's Meraki outdoor wireless access points include a Gigabit Ethernet port and deliver advanced features that include cloud management with multi-site 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 MIMO. To find out more about Progent's support for Cisco's Meraki wireless access points and management tools, refer to Cisco's Meraki APs system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco Wave 2 802.11ax Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 wireless controllers allow fast data exchange, configuration, management, analysis and debugging for Cisco Wi-Fi devices and software services. Cisco offers both physical and software-based wireless controllers for unified management of wireless networks, but networks with many wireless access points are better served by hardware-based Wi-Fi controllers. New Wi-Fi controller devices from Cisco deliver major benefits over Wave 1 and earlier models such as higher performance, concurrent support for 1G and 10G interfaces, improved application visibility and control (AVC), and advanced, integrated protection.
The Cisco 3504 Wireless Controller is an entry-level appliance with a desktop enclosure and intended for small and medium-sized organizations. You can use the 3504 model in a centralized network architecture such as in lean branch and remote offices administered over the WAN via FlexConnect, or in bridge deployments where Ethernet cabling is limited. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller supports as many as 150 access points and 3,000 client users, offers 4 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 3504 controller includes a Cisco Multigigabit interface and four 1-GB Ethernet connections. APs can be connected directly to the WiFi controller through two Power over Ethernet (PoE) ports. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller features subsecond failover for access points and clients, which allows uninterrupted availability for apps. As with other Wave 2 wireless controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 device has the built-in ability to communicate with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services Engine, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 wireless controllers.
Cisco's 5520 Wireless Controller, available in a 1 rack unit (RU) form factor, is intended for larger organizations and campus environments and can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 wireless controller supports up to 1,500 wireless APs and 20,000 users, delivers 20 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 wireless controller features two 10 GE interfaces and features SSD storage, redundant fans, optional redundant power supplies, and subsecond failover for high availability.
Cisco's 8540 Wireless Controller, available in a 2RU enclosure, is a top-of-the-line WiFi controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campus environments. The 8540 Wireless controller can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures and supports as many as 6,000 APs and 64,000 client users. The 8540 Wireless controller can deliver throughput as high as 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8340 comes with four 1-GB or 10GE interfaces and features solid-state storage, dual power supplies, redundant fans, and rapid failover.
Wave 1 Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco wireless LAN controllers reduce the effort and cost needed to deploy, monitor, and operate wireless networks by centralizing control of critical tasks such as setting up APs, applying single-point policies throughout converged wired/wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service for voice and HD video, tracking and optimizing system health, implementing security capabilities to defend against cyber break-ins and DDoS threats, and managing IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed 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 controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 WiFi network controllers include Cisco CleanAir technology to avoid RF interference and create self-healing wireless LANs for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Integrated Bonjour Gateways allow discovery, advertisement and policy throughout WLAN, LAN and WAN for Apple applications. For high availability (HA), Cisco wireless controllers allow access point and client stateful failover by permitting a standby high-availability wireless controller to synch with a main wireless controller for AP license tabulation, CAPWAP keys, and AP CAPWAP state. If the main controller goes down, thousands of wireless access points and clients can failover immediately to the backup wireless controller.
Cisco's Wireless Controller Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for 2900 and 3900 Series routers deployed by smaller businesses and branches. This value-priced and scalable module can handle up to 200 access points and up to 6000 wireless clients. (For information concerning Progent's remote and on-premises consulting and troubleshooting support for Cisco routers, see Cisco router configuration and management services.)
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU switches intended for small to mid-size businesses and branches and features an integrated wireless controller with the ability to support up to 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and 25 APs and 1000 wireless clients per switch. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches intended for mid-size and large organizations and include a built-in wireless controller with up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity per switch and support for 50 access points and up to 2000 wireless clients. The Wireless Services Module2 is an add-in blade for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches that include an integrated wireless LAN controller designed for mid-to-large size businesses and able to deliver 20 Gbps performance and with support for 1000 wireless access points and as many as 15,000 clients. (For information concerning Progent's support for Cisco Catalyst switches, see Cisco Catalyst switches configuration and troubleshooting consulting.)
Cisco 2500 Wireless Controllers are economical desktop appliances that streamline the provisioning and management of wireless networks for small and midsize businesses and branch offices. The 2500 Series wireless network controller can handle 5 to 75 wireless access points and up to 1000 wireless clients and can deliver sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
The Cisco 5500 Series Wireless Controller is a scalable 1RU unit intended for mid-to-large sized businesses and campus environments and can manage 500 wireless access points and 7,000 clients while delivering 8 Gbps performance. The Cisco 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device designed for mid-to-large campus environments with support for 1000 APs and 12,000 clients and providing performance of 60 Gbps to handle high wireless client densities and high amounts of video-intensive applications.
Cisco's Flex 7500 Wireless Controller is intended to manage massive collections of wireless branches from a single datacenter, avoiding the requirement for a Wi-Fi controller at each remote site. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 appliance allows you to build a private cloud to deploy, monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot up to 6000 APs and 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps throughput. Cisco's 8500 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU device engineered to monitor and control Wi-Fi networks for very large campuses or service providers and can be expanded to support 6000 access points and up to 64,000 clients while offering 10 Gbps performance.
To learn more about Cisco wireless controllers, see Cisco Wi-Fi controllers consulting and integration.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Access Points, LAN Bridges and Wi-Fi Controllers Supported by Progent
The 802.11ac standard for Wi-Fi effectively rendered obsolete the previous releases of Wi-Fi products for many environments that support high densities of wireless clients and high incidence of HD video applications. Even for businesses who do not currently require the performance of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, many of Cisco wireless devices have reached end-of-sale or end-of-support status, which can represent significant maintenance and regulatory compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consulting experts offer online and on-premises support services for a wide array of older-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can also assist companies to assess the financial justification for upgrading up-of-date wireless technology and can assist in designing and carrying out cost-effective, non-disruptive migrations. The following are a sample of Cisco older-generation wireless products that Progent's consulting experts continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Aironet 1000 or 1130AG family APs are intended for conventional workplaces and similar locations which have minimal environmental variability. These access points have built-in antennas that offer dependable omnidirectional coverage profiles. The Cisco Aironet 1130G Series device is designed for controlled domains that do not allow 802.11a/5GHz transmission.
Aironet 1230AG/1240AG Series wireless access points are intended for more challenging radio frequency situations like manufacturing plants and warehouses or above ceiling structures which often require flexible external antennas and ruggedized enclosures. The 1240G family device is available for controlled domains that do not allow 802.11a operation.
Aironet 1500 lightweight outside wireless mesh APs offer a cost-effective, expandable, protected outdoor wireless technology for enterprise campuses and for public sites that require access for portable phones or computers.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco Aironet wireless bridges provide a high-throughput and multi-featured solution for integrating numerous LANs in a metro situation or public wireless environment. Cisco wireless LAN bridges provide a versatile, easy-to-use solution that satisfies the security demands of WAN professionals. These devices handle both P2P and point-to-multipoint configurations with good coverage and the ability to handle data throughput up to 54 Mbps.
Cisco Aironet wireless bridges deliver throughput substantially higher than E1/T1 links for much lower cost, doing away with the necessity of expensive leased lines when linking separate buildings. Because bridges carry no periodic charges, the expenses saved on connection services quickly cover the initial equipment costs. Private lines and even leased lines using metal or fiber-optic cable can require high startup costs in cases where they are impeded by barriers like highways, railroads, or bodies of water. Cisco wireless LAN bridges can be deployed rapidly an offer a fast ROI.
Cisco Aironet 1300 family outside access points/bridges can be deployed as independent wireless access points, wireless bridges, or workgroup bridges. These products have a tough cover and offer fast, economical wireless interfaces between numerous fixed or mobile networks and users.
Aironet 1400 wireless bridges offer high-performance, reliable outdoor connections for line-of-sight (LOS) applications. They are housed in a ruggedized enclosure that can withstand harsh outdoor conditions and function within wide temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco WLAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers provide single-point management of wireless LANs by streamlining the control of common functions including intrusion prevention, real-time RF management, automatic configuration, and N+1 redundancy. Cisco WLAN controllers operate with small access points to offer enhanced throughput and advanced management capabilities.
Wireless LAN Controllers (WLCs) offer the control, expandability, protection, and reliability that system managers require to build secure, large-scale wireless environments, from satellite offices to small businesses to main campuses. Cisco's legacy Wireless Controllers can be configured together to provide accommodation for as many as 2400 wireless access points per roaming domain.
Cisco's WLCM or WLCM-E Module for Integrated Services Routers offers small-to mid-size businesses and enterprises an affordable solution to implement and manage protected wireless LANs at branch locations. These devices supervise up to 12 Cisco Aironet APs and are supported on Cisco 2800/3800 Series Routers and 3700 Integrated Services Routers. (To find out about Progent's remote and onsite consulting support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting services.)
How Progent Can Assist You with Cisco Wireless Technology
Progent can provide access to a Cisco-certified CCIE consultant to help your business to design, deploy, manage and troubleshoot a converged wired/wireless infrastructure incorporating a broad range of wireless technologies that provide the identical protection, extensibility, and manageability you demand from a wired environment. Progent can help you to support legacy wireless solutions from Cisco or migrate efficiently to the latest 802.11ac-comaptible products. Progent's CISM and CISSP security specialists can advise you about how to design protection into your wireless network and into your company's processes. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity consultants can help you to configure the high availability (HA) technology incorporated into Cisco's wired/wireless technologies so your converged infrastructure delivers significant return on investment.
Progentís Wi-Fi Site Survey assists you to design and deploy a robust WLAN optimized for your facilities, providing a Wi-Fi ecosystem that provides comprehensive coverage, high speed and capacity, Quality of Service features to support IP voice and video, enterprise-class security and compliance, and easy management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be delivered online to cut time and expense, or onsite for more challenging environments.
For a further look at Progent's wireless consulting services, see Progent's Wireless Network Support.
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