Cisco offers an extensive catalog of wireless networking devices and software tools designed to provide anywhere, anytime access to data and resources and to facilitate teamwork among workers, partners, vendors, and customers. Cisco's wireless product families include the Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of wireless access points, as well as Cisco's Wireless LAN Controller plug-ins and appliances. Progent's certified wireless experts can help organizations of any size to deploy Cisco wireless solutions to support the new paradigm of BYOD networks by integrating their tethered and untethered environments to benefit from easy deployment, predictable throughput, single-point control, uniform policy, fault tolerance, and across-the-board protection.
Cisco Converged Security Architecture for Bring-Your-Own-Device and Wired/Wireless Networking
The Cisco Unified Wireless architecture can scale to as many as 18,000 access points with Layer 3 connectivity across local or offsite locations such as business campuses, university lecture halls, branches, and home offices. Cisco's 802.11x wireless access points and wireless controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are designed to support the identical degree of security, throughput, and ease of management for wireless LANs that businesses expect in their wired networks. This architecture includes integrated mobile services such as VoIP, HD video, and secure guest connectivity. Cisco's Unified Wireless Network solution allows organizations to build wireless environments that improve the way they work and improve output via a mobile and connected workforce.
Progent's Cisco-certified network consulting services offers online or on-premises expertise to help you to plan, deploy, manage, expand, and repair converged wired and wireless networks of all sizes and for any venue. In addition, Progent offers economical remote and on-premises Wi-Fi site surveys to assist you to plan and install a Wi-Fi network with custom-designed access point clustering optimized for your specific work area layout, building structure, and intended application.
Cisco Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst lines of wireless access points enable you to converge wired and wireless networks to deliver the accessibility, density, performance, security and ease of management required to support virtually any scenario. Cisco's wireless access points range from bare bones, single-band 802.11b/g/n devices with throughput of 300 Mbps designed for very small businesses or telecommuters to Wi-Fi 6 APs suitable for handling hundreds of clients per access point and delivering sustained throughput in excess of 5 Gbps. Cisco's latest line of access points can be clustered to provide the capacity to support sites crowded with clients and with high usage rates of HD video application software.
Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Series of APs
Cisco's Small Business Series of wireless access points are Linux-based units engineered as entry-level wireless solutions for light workloads. Most versions in the Cisco Small Business family of APs work with Cisco's Single Point Setup system, which allows you to set up, control and troubleshoot a group of access points from one device through an intuitive web browser tool. All of the models include POE and feature QoS, rogue AP detection, and bridging for connecting to another Ethernet LAN.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 Wireless-N Access Point is a wallmount, single-radio 2.4GHz device able to support 16 802.11b/g/n clients, includes a 10/100 Ethernet port, permits up to 4 AP devices and 40 active clients per cluster, and can handle sustained throughput of 300 Mbps. Cisco's WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n AP able to handle 16 wireless clients per radio for up to 32 clients, includes a GE port, and delivers sustained data rates of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP131 does not support clustering. Cisco's WAP150 is an entry-level dual-radio AC/n access point that includes a 1xGE Power over Ethernet port and can handle up to 16 clients from each radio with 867 Mbps throughput for AC devices and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco Small Business WAP150 allows 4 APs for each cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP321 Access Point is a wallmount single-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11a/b/g/n device with support for 80 wireless clients sharing an 8-device cluster. The WAP321 features a GE port and can deliver throughput of 300 Mbps for the activated radio. Cisco's 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 on each radio for a total of up to 64 active clients, and deliver a sustained data rate of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP351 access point does not support clustering. The Cisco Small Business WAP361 is a dual-radio 802.11ac access point that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet LAN switch, allows 32 active WLAN clients per radio, and delivers 867 Mbps throughput for 802.11ac devices and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco WAP361 supports 8 WAP361 access points for each cluster. Cisco's wall-mountable Small Business WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-radio device that supports 802.11a/b/g/n and the latest 802.11ac IEEE specification. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a Gigabit Ethernet port, can handle as many as 32 wireless clients on each radio, and 8 APs for each cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP561 Wireless-N Selectable Band AP includes one 10/100/1000 Ethernet LAN interface and two concurrent radios that offer 450 Mbps performance for each radio, can handle 64 devices per radio, and allow up to 16 access points for each cluster. Cisco's WAP551 is similar to Cisco's WAP 561 but features a single selectable band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). Cisco's Small Business WAP571 and WAP571E (the weather-proof outdoor version) are dual-radio Wireless-AC/N APs that feature 2 x GE interfaces with link aggregation (LAG), and up to 1.9 Gbps throughput with 1300 Mbps on 11ac and 600 Mbps over 802.11n. Both access points support 32 active WAN clients per radio and 16 access points on each cluster.
Cisco's Small Business WAP581 Wireless-AC Wave 2 AP supports the 802.11ac Wi-Fi 5 specification and features 4x4 and 3x3 MU-MIMO to provide 2.8 Gbps data rates at 5 GHz and 0.6 Gbps at 2.4 GHz for a total top data rate of 2.4 Gbps. The Small Business WAP581 has a fixed 2.5G Ethernet LAN interface and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet interface with 802.3at Power over Ethernet. The WAP581 Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 AP supports up to 200 connective users, up to 50 active client users per radio, 16 APs per cluster, and 960 active users for each cluster.
To learn more about Progent's support for both current and older Cisco Small Business series of wireless access points, refer to Cisco Small Business wireless access points configuration and troubleshooting.
The Aironet Line of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Aironet family of wireless APs has consistently been the market leading access point solution. Aironet wireless access points range from value priced models to enterprise-class units. Cisco's Aironet family span multiple generations of devices supporting the evolving 802 specification. The current portfolio of Aironet APs support Cisco's Unified Wireless Network architecture and include 802.11ac technology, which offers triple the throughput plus superior range and density than the prior generation of devices. Cisco's latest dual-frequency Aironet APs can support 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients that do not have 802.11ac radios.
The earliest Aironet access points are legacy units that have come to end-of-life 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 assist you to manage and troubleshoot your existing Aironet Wi-Fi environment or upgrade cost effectively to current Aironet technology. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for current and legacy Aironet access points, refer to Aironet access points planning and support.
Cisco's Meraki Wireless Access Points
Cisco's family of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor access points include budget-friendly devices for general use to advanced units supporting as high as 5.9 Gigabit per second performance. Every Cisco Meraki indoor access point offers high-end features like self-configuring installation, in-depth protection, Bring-Your-Own-Device support, built-in traffic analysis, automatic over-the-web updates, and centralized cloud-based management for multiple sites. Each Meraki indoor AP also includes two powerful client-serving radios with boosted reception as well as a dedicated radio that provides intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) security for RF analysis and deep packet inspection at line rate.
Meraki outdoor APs are IP67 certified, built to withstand rugged outdoor environments, and tested to withstand dust, vibration and moisture. Meraki outdoor wireless access points include a Gigabit Ethernet port and deliver advanced features that include cloud management with multi-site visibility and control, 802.1X and native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan, single-click secure guest access and guest isolation firewall, application-aware traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with MIMO. To find out more about Progent's support for Cisco's Meraki APs and cloud management, see Meraki APs consulting services.
Catalyst 9100 Family of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 APs are designed for environments ranging from telecommuter homes to crowded enterprise campuses. Catalyst 9100 APs are compliant with the 802.11ax standard, known as Wi-Fi 6, which in turn builds on the preceding 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) standard. Unlike 802.11ac, Wi-Fi 6 is able to use both the 2.4-Ghz and 5-GHz radio bands. Headline technologies supported by Cisco Catalyst 9100 Series APs include OFDMA scheduling for high density deployments, dual NAVs for better dependability, increased device sleep time for reduced power usage in battery-dependent endpoints, adaptive sensitivity thresholds for better spectrum utilization, and dynamic fragmentation for reduced overhead. All Catalyst 9100 Series wireless APs support Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller (EWC), handle up to 200 clients per radio, and run on Cisco IOS XE Software. To find out more about Progent's support for Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Line of Wireless Access Points, refer to Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax access points system planning, configuration, and troubleshooting consulting.
Cisco 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6-compatible wireless LAN controllers help you manage advanced Wi-Fi environments that incorporate 802.11ax access points. The 802.11ax standard, referred to as Wi-Fi 6, improves on prior generation 802.11ac (referred to as Wi-Fi 5) devices by providing less latency and more reliable performance, supporting higher client density, offering enhanced security, conserving energy for battery-powered mobile devices, and allowing more flexibility for supporting the latest types of IoT endpoints. Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi controllers feature high availability with seamless software updates, hot patching, and the ability to connect additional access points with zero downtime. Enhanced cybersecurity technologies include Cisco Wireless Intrusion Prevention System (WIPS), image signing, and Software-Defined Access (SD-Access). Streaming telemetry allows you to track and understand infrastructure and client health.
All controllers in the Catalyst 9800 family are powered by Cisco's IOS XE Software and operate with Cisco's DNA Center or Prime Infrastructure network management tools. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 wireless network controllers can support Cisco Aironet 802.11ac Wave 1 and Wave 2 wireless APs as well as Cisco Catalyst 9100 802.11ax APs. For details about Progent's consulting services for Cisco 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers, see Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 wireless controllers system design, deployment, and troubleshooting services.
Cisco Wi-Fi 5 802.11ac Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers allow fast communication, configuration, control, analysis and troubleshooting for Cisco wireless devices and services. Cisco has developed both hardware and software-based Wi-Fi controllers for centralized management of WiFi environments, but networks with many Wi-Fi access points typically require hardware-based wireless controllers. Current generation Wi-Fi controller devices from Cisco offer major advantages in comparison to Wave 1 and older models such as higher throughput, concurrent support for 1G and 10G Ethernet, improved application visibility and control, and advanced, built-in security.
Cisco's 3504 Wireless Controller is a value-priced device available in a desktop body and designed for smaller organizations. You can install the 3504 in a centralized WLAN environment such as in lean branch and home-based offices managed across the WAN via Cisco FlexConnect, or in bridge installations where Ethernet cabling is sparse. The 3504 wireless controller supports up to 150 wireless APs and 3,000 client users, delivers 4 Gbps performance, and supports 4,096 VLANs. Cisco's 3504 WiFi controller includes a multi-gigabit Ethernet port and four 1-GB Ethernet connections. APs can be connected directly to the controller via two PoE ports. The 3504 wireless controller features subsecond failover for APs and clients, which allows uninterrupted availability for apps. Like other current Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers from Cisco, the 3504 device has the integrated capability to work with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WLAN controllers.
The Cisco 5520 WiFi Controller, available in a 1 rack unit (RU) form factor, is intended to support larger enterprises and campus networks and can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments. The 5520 Wi-Fi controller can handle up to 1,500 Wi-Fi access points and 20,000 clients, delivers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 model controller features two 10 GE interfaces and incorporates solid-state storage, redundant fans, optional dual power supplies, and rapid failover for high availability.
The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller, offered in a 2 rack unit enclosure, is a high-end wireless controller designed to support enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 Wireless controller can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures and supports up to 6,000 APs and 64,000 clients. The 8540 WiFi controller can deliver data rates as high as 40 Gbps and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller includes four 1-GB or 10GE ports and features solid-state storage, dual power supplies, redundant fans, and rapid failover.
Wave 1 Cisco WiFi Network Controllers
Cisco wireless LAN controllers cut the time and expense needed to configure, manage, and troubleshoot wireless networks by offering single-point control of functions like provisioning wireless access points, enforcing consistent policies throughout wired/wireless networks, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service (QoS) for IP voice and HD video, tracking and optimizing network health, activating wireless intrusion prevention system (wIPS) tools to defend against unauthorized access and Distributed Denial of Service threats, and handling IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless LAN controllers for organizations of any size and can provide standalone desktop controllers, modular add-on controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and Catalyst switches with built-in wireless controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 wireless LAN controllers include Cisco CleanAir technology to minimize signal interference and create self-healing and self-optimizing wireless networks for top 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Built-in Apple Bonjour Gateways permit discovery throughout the enterprise for Apple applications. For high availability, Cisco wireless LAN controllers allow access point and client stateful failover by enabling a backup HA wireless controller to synch with a primary wireless controller for AP license tabulation, CAPWAP keys, and access point CAPWAP state. In case the primary controller stops working, thousands of access points and wireless clients can failover in less than a second to the backup wireless controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for 2900 and 3900 routers used by smaller businesses and satellite offices. This value-priced and expandable solution can support from five to 200 access points and up to 6000 wireless clients. (To find out about Progent's online and on-premises consulting support services for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and management consulting.)
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches intended for small to mid-size businesses and satellite offices and have a built-in wireless controller with the ability to support up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity per switch and 25 wireless access points and 1000 wireless clients per switch. Cisco Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU rackmount switches intended for mid-size and large organizations and include a built-in wireless LAN controller supporting 40 Gb of wireless capacity per switch and the ability to handle up to 50 wireless access points and 2000 clients. The Wireless Services Module2 (WiSM2) is an add-in blade for Catalyst 6500 Series switches with an integrated wireless LAN controller designed 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 support for Catalyst switches, refer to Cisco switches deployment and management support.)
Cisco 2500 Series Wireless Controllers are entry-level desktop units that streamline the deployment and management of wireless networks for SMBs and satellite offices. The Cisco 2500 Series wireless network controller can handle from five to 75 APs and 1000 wireless clients and offers sustained data rates of 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Wireless Controller is a scalable 1RU appliance designed for mid-to-large sized enterprises and campuses and can manage 500 access points and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device designed for mid-to-large campus environments with the ability to manage up to 1000 access points and 12,000 clients and offering performance of 60 Gbps to accommodate high client densities and high amounts of media-rich applications.
Cisco's Flex 7500 Series Wireless Controller is intended to enable centralized management of massive collections of wireless branches from a single datacenter, avoiding the requirement for a wireless controller at each branch. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 lets you build a private cloud to configure, track, maintain, and troubleshoot as many as 6000 access points and 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 8500 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU device engineered to monitor and manage wireless environments for very large campuses or service providers and can be expanded to handle 6000 wireless points and up to 64,000 clients while offering 10 Gbps performance.
To find out more about Cisco WiFi controllers, visit Cisco Wi-Fi controllers consulting and integration.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Access Points, LAN Bridges and Controllers Supported by Progent
The introduction of the 802.11ac specification for Wi-Fi virtually rendered obsolete the previous releases of Wi-Fi products for environments that have high numbers of clients and high incidence of video-intensive software applications. Even for businesses who do not require the bandwidth efficiency of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, many of Cisco wireless devices have reached end-of-sale or end-of-support status, which can pose serious maintenance and compliance issues. Progent's Cisco-certified consultants provide remote and on-premises support services for a broad array of earlier-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can also assist companies to evaluate the financial justification for updating up-of-date wireless technology and can help in designing and executing affordable, non-disruptive upgrades. The following are a sample of Cisco older-generation Wi-Fi products that Progent's consulting experts still support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Access Points
Cisco Aironet 1000/1130AG Series wireless access points are designed for conventional workplaces and similar sites which have minimal environmental variability. These devices have built-in antennas that provide predictable omnidirectional range patterns. The Cisco 1130G family product is offered for controlled locations that do not allow 802.11a/5GHz transmission.
Aironet 1230AG/1240AG family access points are ideal for more difficult RF environments such as factories or above suspended ceilings which tend to require flexible protruding antennas and durable cases. The 1240G Series wireless access point is intended for controlled locations that do not allow 802.11a/5GHz transmission.
Cisco Aironet 1500 family lightweight outside mesh APs deliver an economical, expandable, protected outdoor Wi-Fi technology for enterprise campuses and for public sites that require connectivity for mobile phones or computers.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless Bridges
Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer a high-speed and feature-rich solution for integrating numerous local area networks in a metro situation or public wireless environment. Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer a versatile, easy-to-use solution that satisfies the security demands of public networking specialists. These bridges manage both P2P and point-to-multipoint deployments with good coverage and the ability to handle traffic throughput as high as 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer throughput dramatically higher than E1/T1 links for much lower expense, doing away with the need for expensive leased lines when linking different buildings. Because wireless bridges require no periodic costs, savings on leased-line services quickly cover the startup equipment costs. Self-installed private lines and in some cases leased lines utilizing metal or optical cable can require very expensive initial expenses when they are separated by barriers such as freeways, railroads, or bodies of water. Cisco Aironet wireless bridges can be installed quickly an offer a fast ROI.
Aironet 1300 family outdoor access points/bridges can be implemented as independent wireless access points, wireless bridges, or wireless group bridges. These products have a ruggedized enclosure and offer high-speed, economical wireless interfaces between multiple stationary or mobile environments and clients.
Aironet 1400 bridges offer high-performance, dependable outdoor wireless bridging for line-of-sight (LOS) applications. These devices are housed in a ruggedized enclosure that can withstand severe outside conditions and can operate in wide temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco WLAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers centralize the management of wireless LANs by streamlining the control of key functions such as integrated IPS, fast RF control, zero touch configuration, and full N+1 redundancy. These controllers work with small wireless access points to offer enhanced throughput and advanced management functions.
WLAN Controllers (WLCs) offer the control, expandability, security, and resilience that IT managers need to build secure, large-scale wireless environments, from branch offices to small companies to headquarter campuses. Cisco's first-generation Wireless Network Controllers can be configured together to provide support for up to 2400 wireless access points per roaming domain.
The Cisco WLCM or WLCM-E Controller Module for Integrated Services Routers offers small-to medium businesses (SMBs) and enterprises an affordable solution to implement and manage protected WLANs at satellite locations. These wireless controllers manage as many as a dozen Cisco access points and are installable in Cisco 2800/3800 Series Integrated Services Routers and 3700 Series Routers. (To find out about Progent's remote and onsite support for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting support.)
How Progent's Engineers Can Help You with Cisco Wireless Devices
Progent can provide access to a Cisco-certified expert to assist you to design, deploy, maintain and troubleshoot a converged wired/wireless environment incorporating a broad array of wireless products that provide the same protection, expandability, and ease of management you expect from your wired network. Progent can help you to manage legacy wireless solutions from Cisco or migrate efficiently to the latest 802.11ax-compatible products. Progent's CISM and CISSP security specialists can advise you about how to build protection into your WLAN and your company's processes. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity consultants can assist you to deploy the HA features incorporated into Cisco's wireless and wired products so your converged infrastructure provides non-stop return on investment.
Progentís Wireless Site Survey helps you to design and implement a state-of-the-art wireless network customized for your facilities, offering a wireless solution that provides seamless coverage, high speed and density, QoS features to support IP voice and video, enterprise-class security, and easy management. Progent's Wi-Fi Site Survey can be delivered online to reduce time and costs, or onsite for more difficult situations.
For a further discussion of Progent's wireless consulting capabilities, see Progent's Wireless LAN Consulting Services.
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